The expression “you are only as old as you feel” has taken on a whole new level of meaning in the Netherlands as 69-year-old motivational speaker Emile Ratelband is trying to legally change his age on his Dutch birth certificate and other official documents.
He wants to change it to 20 years younger because he says he “feels” around 49. Ratelband believes the younger age will help him avoid age discrimination so that he can succeed in his career, his dating life, and even father more children. So convinced is Ratelband that he really is years younger, he is even willing to delay his pension benefits for 20 years just so he can be 49 again.
In an interview with The Washington Post, Ratelband said, “[I]n Europe and in the United States, we are free people. We can make our own decisions if we want to change our name, or if we want to change our gender. So I want to change my age.”
In a legal environment in which there are no absolutes, we can expect these kinds of claims to become the new normal. A ruling is expected by the end of the month.
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