The Third Third
An online Journal for women engaging the third third of our lives.

The Political Circus

Written by Ann Sentilles on May 17th, 2015

These right wing candidates would be amusing -- if they weren't dangerous

At the End of a Life Well-Lived

Written by Ann Sentilles on April 21st, 2015

A death sentence means there is no time for anything inessential

Aging in Place

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 14th, 2015

A Village helps build into one’s home and neighborhood the services and personnel that can keep elders safe and actively engaged in the life they’ve made there.

Advertising Age(s)

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 23rd, 2015

It's startling to see significantly older women gazing out at you from glossy designer fashion spreads.  What are they doing there?

Seeking Intimacy in a Good Marriage

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 18th, 2015

Marriages can get old and tired, too.  Lots do.  But you don't have to settle for "good enough."

Your daughter is single. Don't say this!

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 13th, 2015

It's not Mom's job to help her daughter find that special someone.  

Are Older Women Invisible?

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 3rd, 2015

New NPR series explores "Invisibility" -- this time with an older woman

Dating Apps: Aging Algorithms?

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 28th, 2015

My 30 year-old daughter says online dating is hard.  She can't imagine trying it at 60.

Confessions of an Ageist

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 27th, 2015

Owning ageism  -- and using it to age more successfully

Grannie 4-1-1

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 27th, 2015

Our mothers were the "baby whisperers."  But times have changed (I'm told), and my daughter was not interested in the wise counsel I proffered after the birth of her first baby.  I was crushed until I realized she wasn't rejecting me, only my "suggestions;"  I could still be a loving Grannie.  

What matters in the end

Written by Ann Sentilles on December 16th, 2014

Gawande takes Old Age to its inevitable conclusion (Spoiler Alert: Everyone dies) and asks how we might better live -- and treat -- that final stage.

Grown up at 35?

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 6th, 2014

Isn’t it a little late? Or not? I remember 35 myself — and the feeling I was finally old enough to know better and still young enough to enjoy it and thinking that was, perhaps, the definition of “Grown Up.”

Passion in your Marriage?

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 3rd, 2014

I’m just asking . . .

Christmas cards to die for, make that live for

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 30th, 2014

Midst the many Christmas messages this year (achievements, grandchildren, retirement, travel) came several with sobering news of old friends’ untimely deaths. They’ve left me feeling diminished and particularly vulnerable.

Living is Aging; Aging is Living

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 21st, 2014

Academia is trying its hand at the study of successful aging from at least two different angles: the emotional and financial well-being of the aging cohort on the one hand — and the care taking market they represent on the other.

The Age of Medicare

Written by Ann Sentilles on November 17th, 2013

 It’s actually easy to sign up for Medicare Parts A and B.  And with appropriate guidance, much of which is also on the medicare.gov website, one can effect the necessary supplemental insurance programs, too. Yay! I did it!

Too Old to Run? Not so fast.

Written by Ann Sentilles on July 18th, 2013

Ageism and Sexism in Presidential politics? No kidding.

Grannie's New House

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 22nd, 2013

Have you read about the grandmothers who spend hundreds of thousands of dollars professionally redecorating their homes with nurseries and playrooms for visiting grandchildren? When did it stop being sufficient to borrow a Pack ’n Play?

Too Much to Ask

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 11th, 2013

Have we lost the battle to sustain a successful democracy before any meaningful debate -- about the economy, gun control, immigration, climate change, the cost of medical care, drones, or whatever -- even begins?

Insidious Campaigns

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 26th, 2013

The self-proclaimed opposition is not even coming to the table anymore; instead it is subverting the process with insidious campaigns designed to destroy rather than debate any ideal or objective with which it disagrees.

Why I Support Gun Control

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 4th, 2013

There are values that matter to me as much as gun “rights” matter to others -- quality education, for example, equal opportunity,  and economic and social justice.

Patterns of Care

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 21st, 2013

Caretaking is hard. Sick, old people are scared and will grasp at — or lash out at — anything and anyone to regain control over their lives. Don’t take it personally.

Small Town Values

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 15th, 2013

Given all that its people share in common, it’s little wonder a small town generates such strong values.

Curtailing Medicare Costs

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 8th, 2013

Effective cost-controlling reform could start by eliminating the 12 (count them!) different notices I have received from the SSA about my Medicare coverage.

Holiday Traditions: Blessings or Curse?

Written by Ann Sentilles on December 12th, 2012

How many family traditions are so profoundly sacred they can’t be changed. . . by the next generation?

Medicare and Me

Written by Ann Sentilles on November 13th, 2012

At least a dozen, or 50 insurance companies and the U. S. government have mailed me booklets about Medicare and Me in the last 90 days. Would that I had written the booklets. Then I might have understood them. . . .

My Daughter Takes on Mourdock

Written by Ann Sentilles on October 31st, 2012

In the fight against misogyny

I'll Keep You Posted

Written by Ann Sentilles on October 29th, 2012

 It is one of my core beliefs, nay, fears, about this aging process: that I will be irrefutably old and irrelevant if I fail to adapt to change generally, but specifically to technological change.

A New Take on Dementia

Written by Ann Sentilles on July 1st, 2012

Here’s a new residential facility that redefines quality of life for that aging parent or loved one whose mind -- and very identity -- is eroding.  

Aung San Suu Kyi at Oxford

Written by Ann Sentilles on June 23rd, 2012

A remarkable woman offers a remarkable perspective on “all that is best in human civilization.”

A pregnant woman walks into a bar. . .

Written by Ann Sentilles on June 5th, 2012

You never know who’s going to need a giant Coke — or why. Which is why Mayor Bloomberg’s efforts to ban over-sized sodas is, well, misguided.

A Peaceful Death

Written by Ann Sentilles on May 9th, 2012

A friend says her father’s “peaceful death” was a gift, a final parental admonition: “Be not afraid.” O.K. But it’s still death. And that’s a lot to think about.

End-of-Life. . .Emotions

Written by Ann Sentilles on April 16th, 2012

There are no easy decisions. Every single one involving end-of-life for a loved one also involves the whole of your relationship and the family dynamics that played out over his or her lifetime. Take care.

The Boom-A-Longs

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 31st, 2012

Dad's Demise

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 13th, 2012

The demise of one’s parent, no matter that it’s neither unexpected nor tragic at age 89, is still powerfully sad.

Faith in Technology? Not mine.

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 13th, 2012

Should we be posting miscarriages, divorces, deadly diagnoses, lost jobs, failed relationships, concerns about our children, or end-of-life decisions on the church’s Facebook page?

Change, Encore

Written by Ann Sentilles on March 12th, 2012

Aging is, clearly, a work in progress. Sometimes, even at our age, we will need to change our minds about what it is, exactly,we want to be when we grow up.

12 Books After 60!

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 25th, 2012

Meet Sybille, my neighbor one year in England, who “volunteered” at the British Museum overseeing Etruscan art and artifacts and then, upon “retiring,” wrote and published 12 scholarly tomes!

Skin Deep, And . . .

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 25th, 2012

Wrinkles are one thing. Those age spots? Quite another indeed. What the cosmetics industry wants us to worry about now.

The Lessons of Demographics

Written by Ann Sentilles on February 7th, 2012

Rethinking Social Security — and retirement and the role of an aging population in today’s society.

What if I were 80?

Written by Ann Sentilles on January 30th, 2012

What can any of us do to better prepare ourselves -- and yes, our families -- for that last inevitable decade of decline?  

Away From Home

Written by Ann Sentilles on November 2nd, 2011

At this age, what makes a house, or in this case a flat in England, Home? Even just for a little while?

Debit Card Debacle

Written by Ann Sentilles on October 7th, 2011

Breakfast for Dinner

Written by Ann Sentilles on September 30th, 2011

About retirement: Sometimes it is truly strange to discover, now that you have the time, that the person you know and love most in the world is so different -- from you and from what you thought.   It is -- to employ the British art of understatement -- a bit unsettling.

Living to 100 and Beyond

Written by Ann Sentilles on September 19th, 2011

Even if it’s an achievable goal, is this really what the Good Life should be about? Or where medical care resources should be spent?

A Successful Vacation?

Written by Ann Sentilles on August 12th, 2011

What does a great vacation look like post-retirement, like when a beach and room-service just don’t cut it anymore?

My Mind's Miasma

Written by Ann Sentilles on June 30th, 2011

How it wanders. . . on any given night.

My sister is a widow

Written by Ann Sentilles on June 29th, 2011

My brother-in-law’s death tells me this: We’re all getting older, and this phase of life when people we know and love will die is upon us, ready or not. My dread is as profound as my grief.

Come whine with me!

Written by Ann Sentilles on May 24th, 2011

I mean, really, it’s just not fair: We took good care of ourselves, and we’re still getting old.

A Thank You Note to my Doctors -- AND to Blue Cross Blue Shield

Written by Ann Sentilles on April 25th, 2011

Please keep up the good work.  After a rough year, I am back to taking care of myself so others don’t have to, but I am deeply appreciative of being both well cared-for and well-insured.