Are there any others here ...
... who truly do not want to date?
... who do not feel a need to date?
... who believe they can be content alone?
There's a vibrant discussion going on over in the "For those who have dated" Forum that I have enjoyed reading. I am genuinely happy for those who have found new loves or new friendships and have found new joy in those relationships. I'm one who doesn't believe there is a set amount of time before you can feel ready to allow someone else into your life. If it happens soon, then it was meant to be and it is wonderful. It has absolutely no bearing on how much you loved the one you lost. So this discussion I'm adding is not in anyway judgmental. It doesn't matter how long 'out' you are, how long you were married, whether you are young or old, have young kids or none ... it's a personal decision that is ours and ours alone to make.
HOWEVER, I'm wondering if I'm the only one here in Widville who just doesn't see myself ever dating and I'm ok with spending my remaining years alone. Just wanted to offer a voice for those who might have a different point of view.
@sunfeathers...I'm so glad to read your and everyone's thoughts on this. They help me sort out the unease I feel and define it. I think you said it all when you say "I miss my best friend who accepted me as I am" and referring to just the little things -- sharing a meal with someone who always eats the same thing. Laughing at the same things. Being in the same house and not having to speak, just knowing someone is there.
I often think, "I go out to dinner with friends, I have friends over for tea, I go to things with friends, so what does 'having someone' get me that I don't already have?" And you nailed it -- it's that easy familiarity, that person who is RIGHT THERE who you know so well, who knows you so well. Dating does not give you that. Maybe over time, if you meet someone and there is mutual interest, that develops. And certainly if you were in a long marriage (or often even a short one) you have that. It's the KNOWING. Someone you see once or twice a week, even if he's sitting with you on the sofa watching TV, is just not the same. Just "someone" is not the same.
I'm 62 years old. If I were one of those women who still looked 20 years younger, I could extend "age appropriate men" to what, maybe 55? More likely, I'm a "younger woman" to what, an 80 year old? Really? Sorry, but no. The man I mentioned that I see at a party once a year is 70 and that's mind-blowing enough to think that is "age appropriate" for me now. And no, I'm not interested in being a cougar.
It always comes down to wanting the one I had -- WITH all his baggage -- and I can't have that. That knowledge puts me into the grief mode that I have refused to allow to happen for four years. That's scary and terrifying...and when I let it come I just want to crawl under the covers and take a long nap.
And anyone who was enough like him -- as weird as he was, as quirky as he was, as accepting of me as he was -- to be similar would still be ersatz him. And that is what makes it impossible for me.
Thought I would weigh in here. Not dating again and being in my 60s was where I was at. But now after 4+ years my feelings have changed. I posted on the dating blog on 50s group that I was friends with someone and had gone out on a date but he pulled back at his wife's one year anniversary. We are again talking regularly on the phone and have gotten together for a movie. We do get together at a singles dance and I enjoy his company Not sure where this will go but it is enjoyable and I do not feel I could replace my husband. It is all rather confusing but feel at this point in my life I will enjoy each day. I did find that most men are looking for women much younger then them but I met someone a year younger then myself. My thoughts and writing seem to ramble because I'm not sure where I am at currently and did not expect to ever have an interest again. I will be going away for five weeks to escape the northern winter and it will be a good time to reflect on the changes in my life.
I had thought about going on a dating website but after meeting singles in person I realized you can't judge a person by picture and post. Talking to someone in person really makes a difference.
hugs to everyone on this journey.
wildflower, thanks for your encouraging story. One of the things that really bothered me about the dating sites was the number of men looking for significantly younger women. It's always been that way- I saw it in singles ads back before I married for the first time in 1984. If you're a 55- year old male, why are you looking in the 35-45 age range?
I agree that it's hard to judge by a static picture whether you're compatible- especially when we're at an age where we no longer have unlined faces and taut bodies. A lot of the attraction must be mental and that takes time.
I hope you figure out what you want to do while on your escape from the Northern Winter. :-)
Athena53 I read your last post & see you like to travel. Good for you. It's not selfish..it's the time in our life we need to enjoy our passions. Like you I have done quite a bit of traveling in the last four years. Probably spent half of the time away from home and plan on continuing my travels. Looks like you have some exciting trips in store for you. Enjoy every minute. I don't feel dating should interfere with my plans nor do I feel obligated to cover someone else's expenses
You mentioned covering someone's LTC expenses and that is a big consideration. But I don't see myself ever marrying again
Thanks Susan. I appreciate your comments.
Hello everyone - I've been reading the posts here over the last week or so, and have finally got my thoughts together.
My late wife passed in May of 2012 - we'd been together/married for just about 25 years. Kids are 23 and 19 respectively - the 23 years old is about 3 hours from me and just moved in together with GF (Very nice girl), and 19 is at school about 2 hours from me.
I'm now 50..we met when I was 22 and she was 21...in college. So we essentially became adults together...and that's the thing...I don't see how that can ever be replaced, and that's why I've sort of resigned to be alone..our friends were through her, family is in another city...so I'm here by myself when daughter is at school.
I will admit that two years after she passed I met someone online - through another widow's board - we hit it off and had...what I can say - an affair - a short one as it as a long distance thing. And I wonder - and keep wondering why I did that. How can I throw away 25 years of marriage...the best I can justify it as being desperate for replacing - or trying to replace - what one had before.
So since then I realize that relationship - as nice as that woman was and is - was probably a mistake.
Like I said I'm 50, need to lose about 50 lbs, and frankly I'm financially not in a good place because school (even with max loans) is expensive! All my $$ goes to daughter.
At any rate, one of you guys wrote that it's easier for men than women - I disagree - or would probably - should say - that it depends. But I've got no time (well that's probably not true) and certainly no spare $$ for relationships.
And the other reality is that what my wife and I had, I cannot get back with anyone. But at the same time, I'm not thrilled about being alone either. Yet the other sad thing is that the longer that I am alone (kids not withstanding) I'm getting more and more used to it. Not like it - just used to it...and honestly I'm terrified of growing old alone. Not...what comes after...just growing old.
At any rate...thank you all for listening.
This: " the longer that I am alone (kids not withstanding) I'm getting more and more used to it. Not like it - just used to it...and honestly I'm terrified of growing old alone. Not...what comes after...just growing old." Yeah, pretty much.
When I said it is easier for men I was referring to quantity, not necessarily quality. And men are not judged by looks as much as women are. Unfortunately, men are often judged by money more than women are. So maybe it evens out. I don't know. The numbers in the older age groups favor men, especially when you expand the age range that is "socially acceptable" for men to pursue. You will rarely see a 60-year-old woman advertising for 25-40 year old men, but it not unusual for 60-year-old men to look at that age range. That range does tend to be limited to high-income men, though and is part of the "money = power for men, beauty = power for women" equation that so often seems operative.
I think that those who are able to handle being with someone else are those who are either able to "replace" what they had and think of it as a true replacement...and put the past away, or those who manage to find a place for both the spouse that is gone and the new one, and are lucky enough to find someone in the same position...and have the confidence to have what is in essence a polyamorous relationship without the complications. I respect and admire people who can do that, alas, I am not one of them.
I think I can say "Ditto" to everything said here. The first 7 years, I was convinced that I did not want to date. Then I met someone; I was content being friends but he wanted someone to take care of him. I'm trying not to ramble but like I said I can echo what all of you have said so far. He told me he had never had his pick of so many women. His ego was STROKED; he said I had to consider marriage or he was moving on. I told him count me out and stopped taking his calls. Then he became like a stalker. Bad experience.
Anyway, when the dust settled, I do miss having an occasional dinner and a movie with someone.
But then I read and watched, Our Souls At Night. It put a lot into perspective for me. Diane, like you said and Katpilot too, I'm going to be open to the idea of someone in my life but not going to actively use any sites.
I really am pretty content. I am busy starting companies and coaching young entrepreneurs. It's coming home to the empty house.
I won't say silence since 19 months ago I went totally deaf (on a Sunday evening). Physically beauty lacking now I have a HUGE disability... So I think my chances are slim to none. I just need to keep moving and keep busy.
I went on a 60 mile (3 day) pilgrimage to Europe this fall searching for peace. I am grateful for all I have. I pray to remain independent for as long as I can and pre plan for when I can't. I have more than so many; health and family. One step at a time, and as Anne Lamott says, "In the end, we are all just walking each other home." It would be nice to have a steady someone to walk with...
Timelord, please don't be so hard on yourself- you didn't "throw away 25 years of marriage". Even the most orthodox of religions believe that someone who is widowed is no longer bound by marriage vows. Most of us feel the loss of deep intimacy and unrestrained full-body hugs. For some, that lack is almost a physical ache. One woman posted a few months ago about how, at age 74, she'd gotten into a sexual relationship and realized too late that what she really wanted was just the intimacy. I'm almost 65 and hope I'm not done with sex forever, but I'm gong to be very careful in finding and developing a new relationship.
Funny outcome of all this- after all the discouraging talk about the dating scene, the liars in the dating sites, etc. I had a nightmare last night that I ended up in bed with an acquaintance from my church- a guy who's been perfectly nice to me but I know from other sources, mostly during his ugly divorce, that I want nothing to do with him. Boy, was I relieved to wake up alone!
Timelord, NoLongerInBergen & GG Rose I enjoy reading your thoughts and experiences on dating since I am just dipping my feet in the water & don't know where it will lead. I know I will not find someone to replace my husband but do miss having someone in my life. Also as some of you have said the thought of growing old alone is hard. Hard as it is for me I am trying to live in the present, enjoy current experiences and not write my future be fore it happens. Easier said then done.
GGRose I also watched the movie Our Souls At Night which as you said put things in perspective.
When I posted yesterday to bring this discussion back into view, I really hesitated to mention the feelings that had surfaced. I recall when I first started this discussion nearly 6 years ago (!) it was because I believed I couldn't possibly be the only WV member who did not want to date. And I wanted to give those who felt that way a space here in the Village amidst all of the dating discussions. But reading these recent comments makes me happy that I shared my feelings.
No one is more shocked than I that I'm even considering the idea of dating. And to be truly honest here, this only came about because I met someone who brought these feelings to light. Caring about him is what sparked this. I hadn't realized how much I missed having someone to care about. It's a treasured friendship but, unfortunately, dating him isn't an option.
Katpilot's response about just letting fate lend a hand really resonates with me. It's how I've been living my life since Vern's death ... listening to those little whispers and nudges directing me to activities and trips and classes and even my new little business. I can continue living this way and if a nudge includes the spark of a new love, then I guess I'll need to follow it. It's what happened with Vern & I, so I do know it's possible.