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Depressed about aging

Until just today I have not really felt so bad about aging as I do now. I am 64 and just went to a seminar this morning on senior linkage line information sources. I have also been going to various medicare seminars to start learning about my upcoming options. Usually, in my life I have enjoyed problem solving and learning information was a way to feel empowered. But lately, I have felt terribly overwhelmed by problems to be solved and all this aging information seems to me a bit overwhelming as I navigate to try to figure out how I can care for myself as I grow older. I have no kids to help me out with this. As I was driving somewhere today, I suddenly just started crying, tears coming down my cheeks. I am starting to very, very overwhelmed with so many aspects of aging and all the upcoming changes. I think another thing that spilled over is the ongoing severe stress on retirement investment accounts due to the decreases the past year and now this horrible banking crises starting. I feel like I am on the edge of a cliff and my future is diminishing before my eyes. I've always lived frugally and been a good saver and I've tried to do the right things to prepare for a comfortable retirement - but now there seems to be nothing that I can do to protect myself from anything.

I don't want to have to go through all this energy to research medicare plans every year until the day I die. Oh my god. What if my cognition declines? I have no children to help out as I age and my siblings are pretty useless and have their own issues. The conventional wisdom I was taught is that we should plan on a 3-legged stool for retirement finances - 1. personal savings via IRA/401K, 2. Social Security, and 3. any pensions, if we are lucky enough. 

I feel like social security is in grave jeopardy and now my personal savings via IRA/401k is not doing well due to last year's inflation, interest rates, war, and now banking crises that seems to be only just beginning.  

I guess a happy, secure retirement was always just an illusion? I don't feel like I even have anything to live for anymore - I have no children or grandchildren to try to live for. Everywhere I look, I find messages from our culture that all the things I have learned throughout my life are not valued, respected or useful to the young people and are thought of as ridiculous, even. So what's the point? 

I hope this is just one bad day... and the metaphorical sun will rise tomorrow. But it is a bit unusual for me to feel this overwhelmed. 


Periodic Contributor

Your main concern is exactly what you said which is "there seems to be nothing that I can do to protect myself from anything.". The world seems like a scary place when we are unprotected from it. Think back to times in your life when you weathered a storm and I bet there is such a time. You clearly had the skills then to manage what life threw at you, even if you got hurt in the process. You survived. You are afraid of the "new" problems you fear life will throw at you at this stage in your life. New kinds of problems and the unknown is terrifying you. There is no one simple answer as to how to change your thinking so that you will go through the rest of your life feeling secure. The average person struggles with feeling insecure about things, even those with a strong support system. You are not alone with worrying about yourself and what will become of you. Like I said, this is a multi faceted issue, fear of life really. So no one phrase or bit of advice takes care of it all. With regards to insurance, start with getting a medicare insurance broker if you can. they are private brokers who sell insurance and their services are free. look up medicare insurance brokers 'near me'.  Yes, a  happy secure retirement is an illusion.


It's been a few months since you posted;  how are you doing?   It sounds like you hit a big patch of GRIEF about changes and losses.   I am hoping you got lots of support (like the beautiful responses from here, but in person), tapped into your resilience, processed your sadness and concerns, and found your way back to feeling like yourself.   And if not, I hope you reached out to a therapist for support.  (As a therapist on staff at CVS Minuteclinic, I have seen how having even a few therapy sessions can help people with their adjustment to whatever life is throwing at them; let alone the importance of therapy for addressing grief, anxiety, and depression.)   If you need a therapist, the CVS ones are in-network for Medicare and very accesible in person or by telehealth, so, please make sure to reach out and get what you need. Wishing you (and all those struggling with this new stage of life) all the best.   

Periodic Contributor

How doe one access CVS Minuteclinic? I have Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Advantage plan. Does this CVS Minuteclinic take it? Also what is covered besides mental health with the CVS Minuteclinic?


You said you hoped she had lots of support. she doesn't have support. she more or less said that in her post. It is a hope, a dream and an illusion to imagine that people have "lots of support" as you suggested. there is no evidence to back up that the average person walking around has "lots of support". if she had lots of support, she wouldn't be using an online forum to get support. her "lots of support" would have already comforted her and given her the support she needs. she wouldn't need a forum to get more support.

 I'm sorry you are having a hard time right now and hope it is just one bad day.  I can relate to what you said.  I am 54 years old, have declining health and have no children to help me as i continue to age.  I know for me it is scary feeling so alone and vulnerable.  I have felt content living on my own, doing things i want to do, when i want to do them until lately.   Aging is hard for me to process right now.  I'm trying to live each day as it comes.  Trying to find something good about each day.  Trying to practice gratitude each moment of every day.  I wish you the best.  


I am 54, turning 55 in September. I have spent most of my life treat my depression, sometimes not so healthfully, but it never truly ends. Now, getting older is adding a new layer to it. I am often stuck in regret and feeling the "why bother", too. I have two college age children, but I don't believe they are capable of adulting (as it were), nevermind adulting on my behalf. My mother is in late stage Alzheimer's Dementia and has been under hospice care since Feb. 2022. My father, although in decent physical health, is dying with her emotionally. And our socio-political and economic climates offer no hope. I often think that I should have never gotten married or had children, which was my mantra in my teens and early twenties. What have I brought these two young people into? They are anxious, depressed, stoned on legal marijuana every day, and rationalize all of this with their victim mindset with which mass media (internet, TV, music, even education) has indoctrinated them! All the parenting skills and love that I have and tried could not triumph over the daily indoctrination.from these devices on which we have become entirely reliant. We would have to live like John the Baptist to escape the evil influences destroying our joy.


So sorry you are feeling this way.  I hope it was just one bad day.  Take care.


Carolyn, forget about all the things you don't have, children grandchildren, and give thanks for what is working in your life at this time.  Start learning how to do new things, sewing, watercolor, crocheting, swimming, bird watching, growing Herbs for health or something else of interest.

I am79 years old, I live in a little country town of (200) with my husband, yes, I have children, grand children and great Grand. Trust me, they are all off doing their own thing. Unless they need financial help from you. My Christmas present to myself was a 5 string Bass guitar . If you'd like to learn, I would be happy to show you how it goes. Have a great one!

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