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Wednesday, 23 February, 2000, 13:59 GMT
Does life begin at 40?





The Duke of York has commemorated his 40th birthday by publishing an internet interview in which he reveals that life at 40 couldn't be better.

"Life is a series of successes and failures," he said.

"One must learn from the failures and build on the success.

"I am becoming increasingly convinced that life does indeed, begin at 40."

Do you agree?

Does life really begin at 40?




Your Reaction

Life starts at any age, and doesn't end. You can renew your spirit, cheer up, run on the beach like a child, enjoy youth music, fill your lungs with deep laugh, and harvest great achievement. I lost my job, and started looking for a new one, but I discovered the bitter fact that younger applicants come first in selection, so I started renewing my qualifications, until I felt of great wind of change blowing my spirit open. So that every time I fail, I go back home with more determination to regain my self-confidence, and self-qualification, and I could finally find the job I was looking for. Therefore I say to those who passes the age of 40: try to fill your time, dream, start climbing to the summit, yes go ahead, it is entertaining.
Nasif Rafiq, Palestine

If life begins at 40 then what are we for the other 39 years?
Steve Tinky, UK

My first marriage lasted from 20 to 30. After that I found another love, another job, another life. Yes, for me I started to really enjoy life from 40. So for all those pedantic's, no life does not begin at 40 but it sure feels like it does!
John C, UK

At 40 I had a well-paid management job and a happy family life. Now, nearing 50, after a long spell of unemployment, I have a badly paid menial job and my family life is falling apart. Is there any chance that I could now begin my life again?
Peter Catchlove, UK

It depends on how you look at and define the term "life". It is a fact that at 40 adults has learnt a lot in life and has lived for forty years. At 18 a teenager has only lived 18 years and has learnt a lot up to that age. Depending on what your age is, life is different for each and everyone of us. For me life begins at any age and it depends on what life and circumstances you are confronted with at that particular age.
Aloysious, Isles De Salomon

Life does begin at 40. Until 40, we spend our life, wishing, trying to fulfil the wishes and looking around. But by 40, we get the idea that the only place to look at is ourselves. Most of the successful men and women give their best in late 30s and after 40.
Shardool Vyas, US/India

People, in general, go through a period of depression after 40 thinking that their time is almost up. I think that at that age, they finally know what they want and still have a chance to achieve it.
Jessica Skinner, USA

Life is truly what you make it, at any time in your life. Each stage is important and can be the best or the worst depending on your input. A really happy and fulfilling life starts whenever you want it to.
Susan Hodges, UK/USA

For the individual, it begins at conception, unless you are "born again", which is more twaddle. It would be good to see our greatest Royal of modern times find a new role worthy of his contribution in the Falklands.
David de Vere Webb, UK

I turned 40 last November and my best birthday present was the blue line on the Home Pregnancy test to say that I had conceived! So, yes, life literally begins at 40!
Sue, Germany

Of course life begins at forty. I am well over that age, and I don't mind admitting I look it as well. I have a well-paid responsible upper-management position in a successful company. I have a good company car, a luxurious apartment. I enjoy a hectic social life and have the pick of pretty young women. I am quite content. Thank you.
Mark Verth, UK

Only people who have wasted the first four decades of their life say it begins at 40. My life began when I was born, and I'm making the most of it all.
Andrew Dowle, UK

"Life is what you make it" - at any age! You only get one chance, so the secret is to make the best of it! You're as young as you feel!
At 40, you can still have many aspects of youth, and this along with experience on your side, always helps. I was surprised to find that I was able to outrun some apparently "fit" teenagers. I'm 44 and training for a Marathon!
Phil W, UK

As a man approaching 30, I can only say one thing. I HOPE SO.
Nathan, USA

If it wasn't for modern diets and hygiene we wouldn't live much past forty anyway, so it's a wonderful opportunity that we should grab with both hands. Life is constantly beginning, if people choose forty as a good time to hit the refresh button then so be it and good on them, but equally remember that tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your life.
Jack, UK

As a person in his late 30s, I feel that you get quite confident by this age to either accomplish more in life or just resign yourself to fate.
Femi Ayoola, England

As I approach 40, it makes me look at life slightly differently. I can now anticipate that this represents the halfway point in my life - do I really want the second half to be like the first?
Jenni, UK

Life begins at 40?? No way.. I don't want to wait another 7 years for life to begin. My life began when I left home.
Bharat Bhushan, India/Germany

I bloomin' well hope so!
John, UK

When you are a child you are told that life begins at 18, then when you turn 18, the magical number is 21. At 21 you are told that you don't really become an adult until you are 30, now that I am 30 I hear that life begins at 40, but I sent my Mum a birthday card telling her that life begins at 50 recently.
I am beginning to think that life does not begin until you are elderly and frankly (to me) that seems like the time when your life is about to end. I prefer that old saying, "today is the first day of the rest of your life".
Kate, UK

1) You earn lots of money by then so you can enjoy life; you relax.
2) You gain respect from others.
3) With all these problems behind you the mind and the physical body relaxes and the person can look upon the younger ones with pity.
Selena, Hong Kong

I don't know if I agree life begins at forty; but it sure gets alot better. I know from my own experience and that of others, there is a calming down and feeling of peace that can take place. This doesn't necessarily have anything to do with money, but, with acceptance of where one is and going. It also has alot to do with maturity and getting a good idea of what one's priorities are or should be. Becoming a parent finally at 42 sure helped me alot(it was a long awaited miracle). Now, I appreciate everything so much more. Thank you!
Jan Johnston, U.S.A./UK



The Prince is correct. Age 40 is when you realise that life is not a rehearsal. It's the only one you get, and whatever you still want to do, you have to get on and do it.
Jon Livesey, USA



Life at 40, can be very fine if one has unlimited amounts of other peoples' money to spend.
Turandot, United States and united kingdom



Good grief - Life really does begin at forty - my bust has caught up with my age! YIPPEEEEEE
Dee Zagurski, UK/USA



It did for me! I lost my job just after my 40th Birthday, but this made me leave a boring profession - accountancy - which I hated, a dead-in-the-water relationship and a town in which I had no set roots. I moved to somewhere I was happy, into work I liked and found an new relationship I enjoy. So Prince Andrew, enjoy it. Maybe you'll get back with Sarah Ferguson.
Steve Foley, England

As Satre said, life begins when you can exactly say where and what you are. The sooner the better.
Jean Francois, France

Since turning 40, nearly six years ago, I have certainly become more patient, tolerant and wiser. And while I do not work as hard as I used to, I work smarter, thus achieving the same or even better results (admittedly, from my own perspective!). But I have also learned that success in life is all about knowing when to lead, follow, or just get out of the damn way. One of the tricks I do, when presented with a situation, is to ask myself how important my decision will be one year from now. To see how important that thinking is, just look at a decision (any decision) you took one year ago. Gaining perspective, and being honest about it, is the most important thing I got out of turning 40.
Mark M. Newdick, USA/UK

I hope not. I am only 21, does this mean that I have to wait 19 years for my life to begin?
Emma, UK

His highness is correct in that life does begin at 40 providing that one has the funding to support that life.
Rich Miller, USA

Absolutely, yes! As a nearly 46 year old man, I agree totally with Prince Andrew. I find that I am in a continuous process of incorporating my successes and failures into my life and living. A balance that transcends the idea of success or failure continues to emerge, with an emphasis on life as a living unity of learning. Happy Birthday, Prince Andrew!
Reverend James C. Lovette-Black, USA

I think that I tend to agree with the sentiments voiced by Prince Andrew. Forty frequently marks a signpost on the path of life. It is a time to reflect on where one has been and where one is going. Most children of a 40 old parent are reaching beyond early childhood to young adulthood and can participate in family discussions. The role of a parent changes around this time, to reflect this milestone. Hopefully, by age 40 we have gained some knowledge of our own strengths and weaknesses and because of the modern life span, can look forward to more relaxation and accomplishments based on this self knowledge.
Pat van der Veer, Nova Scotia

Although I am younger than 40, I agree with the Prince that life starts at 40. The most important human being in my life is the Prophet Muhammad and he started receiving the Quranic revelations at age 40. Forty is the age of maturity.
Sam Bazzi, USA

Well - to be honest; life begins at birth!
G. Adams, USA

The same old story! The older we get we coin high sounding phrases really signifying nothing. It, I am afraid, emanates from one source. The desire to be forever young. Life begins at 0.
Name Withheld, USA






Does life really begin at 40?

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See also:
19 Feb 00 |  UK
Wheel treat for Duke's birthday

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