What we talk about in our conversations as we get older

It’s probably something a lot of younger people wonder… what do we talk about as over-60s? I was listening in

It’s probably something a lot of younger people wonder… what do we talk about as over-60s?

I was listening in on a conversation some women were having at a coffee shop the other day. Maybe I was eavesdropping, but I couldn’t help but be intrigued. They were, like me, in their early-mid 60s and were talking about the men they were dating. My God, I thought! They’re talking about dating? They are in their 60s! But then I realised, we’ve have practically come full circle in what we talk about as we age – our partners sadly die or leave us after many years, and we go and look for another with varying degrees of success….then we talk about it in coffee shops.

I have to say I was surprised as only a week before, I overheard a conversation in the lunch room at work. Two 40-year-olds were talking about their weekends – one had gone out on the boat with the kids and husband. The other enjoyed some Moet with her partner for their anniversary, as they watched some fireworks from a nearby celebration on the deck of their very big home in their very affluent suburb. The nonsense that was coming out of their mouths was unbelievable! They didn’t stop for a breath as they discussed their cars, fitness regimes, sex lives and most of all, the money they had. It was appalling and it made me wonder – is this really all we can contribute to society? Have we lost our personalities?

My son was telling me about the debate he’d had with his friends about who would or should win the Queensland election. Now, that is some interesting conversation. But isn’t it supposed to be the other way around?! The 60-year-olds should be talking about the election and the young ones who be talking about dating! I, personally, prefer to talk about a range of topics, but never about money, dating or politics. I don’t have a lot of friends per se, but when we are together, my mind tends to switch off. Sometimes I wonder if anyone my age wants to talk about interesting, thought-provoking things like science, spirituality and expanding one’s mind…! Are there people out there like me?

When people ask who their ideal dinner date would be, they usually say Oprah, or the Queen, or George Clooney. But I would just love to have a rousing conversation with someone in their 60s who has travelled the world and has had profoundly beautiful and amazing things happen to them. Someone who threw the bowlines in and sailed away from the safe harbour. Who never sat at their desks in a little box, typing away their entire lives. Someone who speaks richly and can teach me things. Sure, gossiping can be fun from time to time, but I crave meaningful conversations in my 60s – does anyone else?


What do you talk about with your friends? Do you agree with this writer? Do you have meaningful conversations or do you speak about surface-level things? Tell us below.

  1. Maria  

    This article is so true. I am 66 and still working . I find that having a conversation with people of my age quite boring at times, and not engaging. I Find that to have a meaningful conversation or an intelligent conversation quite rare, and so I lose interest . I am not a person to sit at home and crochet and having cups of tea! I enjoy being active eg Pilate , riding my motorbike, travelling etc.

  2. Helena Cornelia  

    I have moved to country Victoria, and although everyone has been welcoming and friendly, there is a definite lack of interest for anything outside the local area. Gossip it the main conversation, and if you do not know who was married to whom, their children, their family connections you could be listening to a soap opera that you have never watched. Conservative and stuck in a time warp of the 50’s that is also fantasized I find it hard to communicate with my country peer group. I’m aware that my life experiences are so far removed from the average 60+ in the area and have found that the best approach is to just be quite, but I miss talking on contemporary topics.

  3. Maria  

    Oh I do have to say Amen to this topic. We have just come home from 3 months away travelling wherever a train took us, mainly in Europe but we did manage Israel and some UAE countries (I wanted to see Petra) on returning nobody but nobody even asked if we had enjoyed ourselves, when we told people we had been away our only comments were, thought we hadn’t seen you around.!!!! Neighbours who we hoped would be watching our property in a high rise….. no chance. We were not left short of people and lively debates overseas even in another language to make it twice the fun, it was like culture shock coming home….

  4. In our 60’s, and beyond with my friends we discuss a wide range of topics, from family, travel, current events, the arts, our hobbies, some are dating again, sometimes sexlife or lack of, it does not matter, we are friends and enjoy the company of our friends, what others listen in on and pay attention to and think about is none of my business and also none of theirs either!

  5. Ronin  

    I find the conversation of most people, irrespective of age, mundane and boring. Only when I’m talking with my immediate family can I engage in discussion on current affairs, philosophy, history, ethics, geopolitics, spirituality, quantum physics, the meaning of life et al.

    The usual response I get from others? Either “I don’t know anything about that.” or “I’m not interested in those things.” Sad really.

  6. M Taylor  

    I’m aware that most folk in their eighties will have some health issues but I get tired of listening to symptoms, what the doctor said and how many pills they have to take. I also find that an ability to listen to their concerns rarely results in an enquiry as to how I am.

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