A Lesson in Aging

Looking back now, one of my most distinct age-related memories involves my two best friends. One evening, we decided to plan when we would get married. We did this so that in the future, our weddings wouldn’t clash. After all, we wanted to ensure that we could dedicate all our time into each others’ wedding festivities; so of course, getting married the same year was out of the question. And in our young minds, one more thing was totally inconceivable – getting married after 30. If I’m not wrong, I believe the ages we’d picked were 24, 25, and 26.

I’d like to take a second to point out that at the time, we were 15.

Fast forward 10 years, and none of us are married. We are all perfectly content with our independence and are happily pursuing our careers. However, this incident speaks to a larger issue – the fact that women place a lot of age-related pressure on themselves. This is a direct result of the fact that society expects us to follow a pre-destined path, and we are often looked down upon when we defy the status quo. So much so that these norms are drilled into our heads from a very young age. Unfortunately, no matter how successful we are, there is often a latent feeling of failure if we are not married by a certain age. This is especially prevalent in Asia.

SK-II’s latest campaign focuses on how four women chose to follow their dreams instead of succumbing to the pressure of marriage by a certain age. As a South Asian woman, I got chills watching the video (which you can find below) because of how much I was able to relate to it. Thankfully, I come from a family that is incredibly supportive of my career, but that doesn’t mean pressure doesn’t exist outside of my family. If I were given a dime for each time I’ve been asked ‘so when are you planning on getting married?’ I’d be a rich woman, indeed. My unmarried friends and I, who are in our mid-twenties, joke that although we haven’t yet expired by societal standards, we are past the ‘best before’ date.

This campaign by SK-II is incredibly powerful because it shows that women can choose to change the way they perceive age. Instead of feeling ashamed by our decision to not conform to societal norms, we can take pride in breaking gender norms. The change that we want to see in society needs to start with us. We have the power to break free of the shackles of external expectations. We have the power to change destiny. And most importantly, we have the power to spread the message that we never expire.

Ladies, are you ever victims to age-related pressures?

This post was created in partnership with SK-II, all opinions are my own.

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38 Comments

  1. Britta
    June 28, 2017 / 11:15 am

    I can totally relate to this issue. Where I live it is expected that we get married but a house and have children. Nothing else matters. And all this preferably before we hit the big 30🙈
    Well people often tend to forget that the times have changed and that is women are not only focused on having kids! We actually take pride in other things as well- like our careers.

  2. June 28, 2017 / 11:36 am

    I also thought I’d be married with kids by 25 and now I’m close and it’s like nope, not yet haha 🙂 xx

  3. June 28, 2017 / 1:24 pm

    As a kid, I thought I wanted I have kids by age 25. I am married but I don’t have and kids yet — I’m 31 — because I’ve been too busy living live, and I’m totally OK with that. All women should be.

  4. June 28, 2017 / 1:39 pm

    The moment I got engaged, people started asking “so when are you having kids” and I was like, “wait a second, Im not even married yet, can I just enjoy my life with my husband?!” The pressure on women is intense and insane and I hope it changes. We have the choice to live our lives the way we want! Whether that means kids or not. Thank you thank you Siffat!
    Xoxo, Serene

  5. June 28, 2017 / 2:02 pm

    What a powerful video. I can totally relate to this message. When I was in my early teens my friends and I all said we were going to be married and have kids by the time we were 25. Fast forward to my twenties and that wasn’t even on my mind. However, once I hit my thirties the pressure was non stop about getting married and having kids. I think the pressure that society places on women need to change. Times have changed and we should be allowed to have the freedom to choose how we want to live our lives. Thank you for sharing with us.

    xo, Jackie

  6. June 28, 2017 / 3:21 pm

    I can totally relate with this babe!! So so so true. We should just live our lives without anyone or society dictating what we should and shouldn’t do.

    Love this campaign girl!

    xxx

    Ashley

    http://www.missgunner.com

  7. June 28, 2017 / 4:03 pm

    Haha can definitely relate! I also picked out an age where I thought that I would have my life together and defined in my 20s and I’m nowhere near it haha, I enjoy my freedom! Xx

    http://www.thefashionfolks.com

  8. June 28, 2017 / 5:20 pm

    So glad you chose to talk about this and really love that campaign. I know how society pushes us to get married at young ages, but as you I am really happy the way I am, not married, and working on growing my business. Wishing you a great day! xx

    Andreea,
    http://couturezilla.com/

  9. Tamara
    June 28, 2017 / 7:23 pm

    When I was 15 I used to say I will never get married before 30. Yet I met my soulmate at around 20 years old and got married at 23. I was pressured not to get married because I was young. But we knew we wanted to be with each other and that it’s the right decision for us. I had got my degree before marriage and was working. Life never goes as planned. Marriage is something that should happen organically not by force. There ‘s always a pressure of some sort and you can never please everyone. Just do you!

    XoXo,

    Tamara – LoveofMode.com

  10. June 28, 2017 / 8:24 pm

    Oh god, I would have never guessed that following a career instead of marrying puts so much pressure on women. I guess I’m just too young to know all of this yes. Anyway I’m glad you discuss issues like this on your blog and that campaign is beautiful!

    Xx, Lora | Cherry Cola Style

  11. June 29, 2017 / 4:15 am

    Thanks for posting this. It’s so true! I often find myself feeling like a failure because I’m almost 29, single, still living with my mother, no kids, never been married. About 75% of the people I graduated with have already bought houses, settled down, and started a family.

  12. June 29, 2017 / 2:10 pm

    When I was about 10 I used to think that I would be married and with kids by 25, I’m 25 now and I have no need or desire to be married with kids hahaha. Time is a funny thing, I used to think that 25 was so old and mature.

    xo | Cindy Elena
    http://www.boringclothes.com

  13. June 29, 2017 / 2:42 pm

    Wow! Amazing! Totally feel it!

  14. June 29, 2017 / 7:57 pm

    love this! I’m 32 and I’m not married. I have a boyfriend and I feel no pressure at all to get married. While I’m sure we’ve both thought of it, we’re not in any rush. I always make a point to tell my younger friends that there is no rush to get married. It’s important that we ourselves and our careers first.

    The video was amazing too!

    Love your honest point of view 🙂

    http://www.luellapearl.com
    Caitlin

  15. June 30, 2017 / 1:03 am

    Very relatable post! I have asian parents who are constantly telling me I need to be married soon, which can be frustrating and make you feel like there’s something wrong if you’re not married by society’s recommended age of marriage.

    ephemeralfox.blogspot.com

  16. June 30, 2017 / 8:24 am

    Such a powerful yet simple concept and video isn’t it? My own freakout at the age of 30 was not something I am proud of. What I expected to have happened at that age and what have happened are two very different things. It took a lot of convincing to change my mind on what timeline I ‘should’ have versus, what is real. I love SK II even more for this project.
    xx Jenelle
    http://www.inspiringwit.com

  17. June 30, 2017 / 3:48 pm

    It’s totally ok! I think people back in the days, people used to get married so young but now that we have careers to focus on and our life expectancy has increased, we feel like we do have more time before tying the knot! Love the post as always and I still need to give SK-II a try!

    -Didier
    http://www.didieryhc.com

  18. July 1, 2017 / 10:53 am

    Amazing insight into your story!
    Thanks for sharing babe

  19. July 1, 2017 / 4:06 pm

    Thank you for sharing and shedding some light on this topic. I think that many of us can relate to societies age-related pressures on women the biggest ones being ~ Marriage and when to have kids.

    Xx
    Nikki
    http://www.nikkilivinglife.com

  20. July 2, 2017 / 12:55 am

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this campaign so much!!! Even here in the US we put pressures are ourselves, and maybe it’s our own desire to be married and such, but, I wish we could all just be ok with our lives turned out. Married, not married. Kids, no kids. I know being single and well over the “prime,” there are days that are just really hard. I always get the sad looks, or the people who mean well but say things like, “Oh, it’s ok, there’s still time.” Ugh. I just want to say, “thank you for your sympathy and making me realize that I am in fact, still single.”

    Thank you for sharing this:)

  21. July 2, 2017 / 9:06 pm

    I’m constantly astounded by how well written, beautiful your posts are. Not only are you stunning, but you are an amazing influence within the blogging and female community. Thank you!

    Imogen // http://www.faux-silk.com

    • siffat.h91@gmail.com
      July 3, 2017 / 2:26 am

      Comments like yours is the reason I keep blogging. You’re so kind, thank you!

  22. VVEEKEND 101
    July 3, 2017 / 6:24 am

    Loving your laidback outfit with the pyjama top and comfy shoes. Love the video! <3

    VVEEKEND 101

  23. July 3, 2017 / 10:20 am

    This post and video resonated with me so much, I can relate I am turning 36 this year and I can relate to that pressure so much, I LOVED the message you brought XXX

  24. miri
    July 3, 2017 / 8:12 pm

    Hi Siffat,

    I really love this video. It is touching and so real. I love that idea that we can change our destiny if we change our thoughts. 🙂
    X
    Miri

    http://currentlywearing.com

  25. July 3, 2017 / 9:21 pm

    I couldn’t agree more with this message Siffat, and as I young woman in my late twenties I have to say that it’s so easy to feel that pressure coming from all sides of society. The truth is that I look at myself and I still see a kiddo, still figuring my life out, with a defined set of goals, but sometimes lost on how to achieve them. Thanks so much for sharing the positive message, beauty, and have a great week ahead! ♥

    Saida

  26. July 4, 2017 / 11:37 pm

    This is so inspiring! I do believe that this pressure is indeed real, more so in women than in men! The idea of an expiry date is harsh but it does reflect reality. It’s like your body is a ticking time bomb. Thanks for your thoughts on this – truly something to reflect on!

    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

  27. July 5, 2017 / 1:25 pm

    Your posts always make me reflect and think after I’ve read them! Thank you for that.
    I must say, I had my twins later in life but the timing was right for my husband and I and that’s all that matters!

    xo
    S
    Grey Canvas

  28. Filipa
    July 6, 2017 / 2:59 am

    I love this babe, I don’t want society dictating what I have to do. I don’t want kids for instance, that doesn’t make me less of a woman. This is an important message that needed to be shared

    Filipa xxx
    PlayingWithApparel.com | Instagram