Since When Did 40 Become Old?

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Since when did 40 become the cross over to old age? Now that I am well past my fourth decade, hearing that 40 is old seems pretty ridiculous to me. But, I do remember when I was 45, feeling like I had stepped over the aging threshold. I think that all the negative spin about reaching middle age threw me into an emotional slump. Of course now, with the benefit of hindsight, it seems pretty silly.

Things have changed so drastically since our mothers were our age. Women today are incredibly fabulous into their 50's, 60's, and 70's. We have great role models. Look at Diane Sawyer, Sophia Loren, Raquel Welch -- still beautiful, still vivacious, still very sexy and working at what they love to do.

Unfortunately, the media has not given any realistic insight into the lives of women over 40. Shows like Cougar Town portray women as desperate and willing to do anything just to catch the attention of a man. I have been waiting to see a more realistic portrayal of what happens to real women in real life, and last night I got a glimpse of that.

On ABC's Brothers and Sisters, Nora Walker has won the attention of a younger man. She did not set out to do this, it happened -- just like in real life. It was great to see the insecurities behind such a pairing -- just like in real life. Nora was truly surprised and a little embarrassed by the attention -- just like in real life. After all, she's in her 60's, which would justify her hesitation -- but how nice to see she didn't have to squeeze into a pair of skinny jeans to attract a man.

Nora's hesitation to flaunt her relationship in public is something a lot of women are going through. Even though Simon is 47, successful, worldly, and very handsome, it still caused a lot of tongues to wag. That's why so many women are nervous about introducing their younger guy to their friends and family.

I don't know where this particular storyline is going, but I do hope it continues to unfold. It would be great for people to see the truth about a Real Cougar Woman.