events and the age an individual was when the event occurred that
influences communication preferences/skills (Baltes 613). Clearly,
the traumatic event of Robert and Sol’s affair and pending nuptials
has a different impact on every character and is a crucial part of
their identities and interactions moving forward. Throughout the
series, Grace tries to withdraw as much as possible in an effort to
avoid talking about her feelings and admitting her embarrassment.
Frankie, on the other hand, is much more open to discussing the
various emotions she has connected to the situation. Much like his
former partner, Sol is extremely sensitive and feels every emotion
that Frankie has, but his efforts to communicate with her are often
shot down because she is not ready to face the situation directly.
While Grace and Robert are very blunt with each other, Grace
frequently expresses her disdain for Robert’s lies; it seems as
though she is only comfortable articulating her anger with the
other characters. Robert is unapologetic in the way that he carries
on in his relationship with Sol. He refuses to hide his happiness
any longer, regardless of who finds his displays of affection to be
insensitive. The main characters’ behaviors also link to a specific
facet of the life span literature that describes how individuals tend
to communicate/act when they are at a later stage in their life span.
Later Life and Ageism
There are several characteristics of later life within the life
span; those most relevant to cultivating a deeper understanding of
Grace and Frankie, however, are social support, socioemotional
selectivity theory, and stereotypes. Socioemotional selectivity
theory (SST) works based on the assumption that as individuals
grow older, their social networks become smaller and their
priorities shift to focus on emotional wellbeing (Lockenhoff &
Carstensen 1397). Social support becomes crucial in these later
years because individuals do have less options for friendships,
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