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by Abigail Van Buren

Signs Of Aging Are Hard For Woman To Face

DEAR ABBY: I've reached the point in my life that I can no longer hide fine lines and crow's feet. It is bothering me greatly. How do other women handle it, especially when the deep lines form?

I've talked to others my age and it doesn't bother them. I want to talk to elderly people and ask them, but I don't know how to politely broach the subject. I feel guilty for being vain and I hate that, but it's hard for me to accept. Please help. -- HATING AGING IN EAU CLAIRE

DEAR HATING AGING: I don't think anyone, male or female, relishes the idea of being old -- particularly in American society -- unless they consider the alternative, which is death.

Men and women handle signs of aging in different ways. Fortunes have been spent on beauty products, with varying degrees of success, although hope-in-a-jar springs eternal. Board-certified dermatologists and plastic surgeons can minimize the signs of aging with fillers, Botox, lasers and surgery, but they can be expensive. Others accept that beauty comes from within and opt to do nothing to change their appearance.

Talking to people in their 70s, 80s or 90s about the changes they have experienced and the lessons they have learned as they grew older is a good idea. I'm sure you'll receive some enlightening input. But if it doesn't change your feelings, talk to a doctor because a good one can work "miracles."

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