Advice from Elderly Women: Against.


By Chisom (@somxpression).

From Twitter banter on International Women’s Day, I found myself volunteering to write this. Ordinarily, I would have preferred to be on the other side, but I think the intention of this debate is not to ‘win’ but to put forth reasonable arguments for either side. I hope my points of argument are reasonable. Please if they are not, don’t vex, kindly throw them out (along with whatever device you’re reading with).


The word advice is defined as a suggestion worth following/an opinion offered as a guide to action/ a recommendation on the best course of action to take in a given situation. As such, by its very nature and concept, it has to be relevant both in time and situation.  Everyone (yes, even you) is a pro at dishing out advice and elderly women who have, in many cases, the least moral basis to be advisers have mastered the art of advising. It is my opinion that younger women shouldn’t take advice from older women. I’ll explain why with the following points:


1. The woman of yesterday is not the woman of today. They live in two different worlds and do not have the same thoughts, habits, experiences and access to certain necessary resources. The woman of 1995 did not have internet on her phone like the 2015 woman amongst other things. So, telling a younger woman what to do is like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. I do not have to point out to you that the times have changed. You already know that. Many elderly women, willing to give advice have lost track in the fast race of modern life, thought and experience and their advice, just like them, is usually wide off the the mark. Why should one attempt to give what she doesn’t have? And you, dear receiver of advice, why should you go to a person who doesn’t currently own a business to teach you how to do business? One cannot give what she doesn’t have and you’re safe if you do not let a person who doesn’t own a business teach you how to do business.


2. Advice, in most cases, is based on personal experience, and personal experience is almost always influenced by the personality, strength, quality of mind, thought, journey and capacity of the person involved. The young woman of today, being a totally different person from the elderly one, will rarely get a balanced and beneficial advice from madam elder.


3. While the content of the advice the elderly woman has to offer may include inspiration,many will be filled with negative experiences of things not to do. The sad thing about this is that these negative experiences are theirs, personal in all respect and a direct consequence of their past attitude (which may or may not have changed), what they did or did not do.The younger woman is certainly different in many ways. She is in most cases, better educated, possessing higher quality of thought, character and greater access to the resources she needs to make her life better and her dreams come true.


4. Many elderly women who are willing advisers of their younger counterparts do not have the mental acuity to advise the young. They probably have been hurt by failure or made lax by comfort resulting in mental inertia, and we all know that the faculties of the mind atrophy when unused. Another resultant effect is fear, for stagnant minds are the breeding places of fear. The elderly woman is full of fear and she will certainly pass it on to the younger one through her advice. Do you want to be full of fear, dear young woman?


5. We naturally unconsciously reinforce stereotypes. We tend to pass on the information we have based on the beliefs we hold without knowing or minding the correctness of such information. The young woman seeking to take advice from the elderly one is at risk here because taking such advice means she might be running with incorrect information which can limit or destroy her.


6. It is easier to direct your thoughts and effort along a desired path till you succeed when you have no references telling you that you might fail. It is already common knowledge to younger women and every other person, that failure just like success, is very possible. So, the more innocent, open minded and inexperienced you are, the larger your capacity for exploration of boundless possibilities.You are more likely to go out and experience the power of your ideas without the weight of the elders advice slowing you down or putting limits in your mind. A brave woman to me, still has more good breaks than the cautious one. It is also my firm belief that a younger woman, or any person waiting for, or relying solely on advice from the elderly is yet to unsure of his personal fight in the race of life.


Finally, if you must take advice from elderly women, make sure that they have built and retained, or are still building their own character, the quality of persistence, self reliance and the strategic ability to master obstacles, profit from their mistakes and develop strength out of defeat.

Thank you 🙂

Picture from here


Full Stop


  • Frank says:

    I don’t agree with the part where you said the elderly women have mental acuity to advice. I think they’re stronger beings generally, being people who have survived. Anwyay, I believe it all boils down to person – who you’re meeting. There are elderly women and THERE ARE ELDERLY WOMEN. You get me?

  • AMAKA says:

    Nicely articulated points. Sommie for President!!1

  • BShaba says:

    This has some good points but my life as a young lady growing up with an old mother has convinced me of the age old saying that ‘what an elderly person sees sitting down, the young might not even with the tallest ladders'(paraphrase)
    There is nothing new under the sun and though technology advancement and other factors have changed the world, today’s experiences can be very much likened to what my mother experienced in her youth.
    My point is I think it’s erroneous to assume that difference in generation thus exposure makes advice from elderly women obsolete or unnecessary for younger women to thrive or lead successful lives.
    The principal thing which I think was expressed in a subtle way here is that we should apply wisdom whenever we are asking for or being offered advice.

  • Chisom Ekechi says:

    Frank, like you said; ‘it all bols down to who you’re meeting.’

    Thank you Amy.

    Bshaba, thank you for noting and pointing out the prinicipal thing 🙂

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