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I am not a kid anymore I am 66.   The last time I dated was 45 years ago.  I am not sure that I want to date yet but am thinking maybe in the next year or so.

In the meantime I need a lot of help in HOW to date at my age. In the '60s as a late teen and in my early 20s I met most of those I dated at dances, I went on Friday and Saturday night around a country dance circuit.  Now if I meet men it is mainly as part of a couple and not as singles.

I don't want to go into online dating or go to a meet up I am not ready for that. But I would like to find someone to go to the movies etc with. 

Tell me your own experiences or where did you find that someone special?

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As someone who is over four years into this journey now (hard for me to believe, but true), I thought I would share the conversation I have with myself repeatedly.  I have moved to a new home, I have made many new friends, and I am really quite happy with my life.  I just held a Christmas potluck and everyone had a good time.  I am surrounded by smart, interesting women who I see often and they always leave me feeling energized.  So I ask myself sometimes, "What would a man add to my life?  What would having someone give me that I don't have now?"  And here's how it goes:

"Well, it would be nice to have someone to go to the movies with."

"You enjoy going alone, and you have friends to go with.  And you didn't like the same kind of movies he did anyway."

"Well, it would be nice to have someone to go to dinner with."

"You go to dinner with your friends 2-3 times a week and you always have a good time.  So it's not like you never go out. to dinner."

"Well, it would be nice to have someone sitting on the couch, who's there when I wake up in the morning."

"But you LIKE your alone time.  Are you unhappy when you wake up?"

"No."

"So what are you missing?  Sex?"

"No, that ship sailed a long time ago."

"OK, so WHAT is it that  you're missing?  Someone to change the light bulbs?  To help wrangle that cat into the carrier?  You always did all the house stuff, hired the contractors, called the plumber, anyway."

"Well yeah, it would be nice to have someone RIGHT THERE."

"Someone?  Who?"

And then I realize that no matter who I met, that person would never "get me" the way my husband did.  That at 62 it is unlikely that I could ever build that bond with someone else.  That I don't want to deal with dating and the games and the phony stuff and the being judged and being found too fat, too short, too old, too weird, not pretty enough, or whatever....to have to deal with the sex thing and trust issues and everything else.  And it comes out that the only one I want is the one I had (WITH all his faults) and since I can't have him, I just need to keep remembering that my life is fine as it is.  It's different from what it was, but it's fine.

Pretty much how I feel...I've moved to a place I like, have a few new friends, keep fairly busy. But I still feel the missing, the longing at times. And like you, no one else will really do....just not enough time or energy now to work for that relationship again. 

I had an advantage when I moved, as I already knew a few people and my ex SIL moved with me. One new friend I met volunteering at the hospital and another new one I met through my SIL ( her friend). Plus my other ex SIL lives very close as well. No men though, but I've never been looking for that. The hardest part for that is they never want to remain just friends. Men are just different, I guess. 

But even with friends and activities, I still get lonely. I still miss my husband and the long life together we should have had. I still feel some guilt and regrets and even anger  in looking back that will probably never be resolved. I'm at 4 1/2 years now. I can't say I'm happy, but feel content most of the time. Content enough, that is considering.....

And the past is fading somewhat in my mind and I don't like that, but it just happens. I'm 71 so I also feel my life shortening and the fears of aging alone and old begin to surface. So far I'm healthy, but for how long? And no children.

Its gloomy here today, so I'm feeling a bit gloomy myself. Just rambling on.....

Just thinking how good it would be to have a relationship again where there was no need for explanations every time I said something. That can still happen with old friends but the married ones are busy this time of the year and the singles often away. I find without a routine I am lost any the loneliness crowds in on me again. How do you overcome that in your summer?

Slick I have found the best way to meet new people is to get involved in activities you enjoy. I have joined my Y and take classes in cardio and gentle yoga. We also have social activities for older adults. Just had a dinner dance for the holidays. I have also joined a 55+ club that has weekly activities.I have made friends including some men. Most of the single men I have met in my age category are looking for caretakers. I will help out a friend temporarily, but have no desire to become a caretaker. At times I think it would be nice to have someone to spend quiet evenings at home, but in reality I do not want to share my home with anyone. I prefer occasionally going out to lunch or dinner without any commitments. I had a good marriage but I have accepted the fact that part of my life is over. Bob and I enjoyed cruising for many years. I decided to try cruising solo and have gone on several cruises. It felt sad and strange at first, but now I look forward to it. I have found that there are many people who are also looking for friendships. Try exploring what activities are avaible in your are that interest you. Peace to all.

Hi Slick, I know what you are going through, because I am in your situation too! I live in a rural small town that over the years has become a superb to the nearby cities. I have all I can do, on my current income after the loss of my husband and his income, trying to maintain a roof over my head and all the expenses that that entails, with little left over for "extras". It is a burden that I carry everyday. I found it very interesting that you were thinking of moving out of your huge metropolitan city for lack of affordable activities, because I was just thinking about selling my home and moving to a huge metropolitan city. My thinking was that I would have more opportunities to find cheaper forms of entertainment and more opportunities to meet new interesting people. I could use the change in my life right now, as it has become stale and stagnant. After reading your post, I am going to have to think long and hard about what it is exactly that I am in search of, before I pick up roots and regret my decision in the long run. So thank you for that!

As far as the Y goes, it is very expensive, but it does offer a lot of opportunities. My husband and I joined a Y near us many years ago. The Y  near us did offer income based memberships, of which we didn't qualify, but we did do the monthly payment plan option that made it more affordable, and if I remember back then, it was around $30 a month. I don't know if that is an option for you, but it may be worth a looking into. 

@Bobbysgirl:  What you just said is advice my mother gave me in my 20s and for all that she was wrong about almost everything else, she was right about this:  The way to meet people is to do things you enjoy.  I would add to this "Be the kind of person you yourself would want to hang out with."  I spent much of my youth seeing the dark cloud behind every silver lining, and I'm not going back there again.  

I moved to a new community in a new state.  I'm fortunate in that I moved to a great neighborhood where they invited me to join the book club immediately.  I joined a bunch of meetups -- movies, ethnic food, progressive politics, walk and talk -- a bunch of them.  Then a group started up in my area for women 50+ aging alone, with an aim towards forming a social circle to make friends and have mutual support.  There are about six of us that are hoping we can find a way to form an intentional community when we get older.

Like you, I've accepted that the partner/marriage/man part of my life is over.  Every now and then I find myself thinking I would like to meet someone, but the truth is that the one I want is the one I had (even with all our problems), and someone new would fill up the space, but not the place in my heart and soul.  I find it liberating to for once in my life not have to worry about whether men find me attractive.  

I think it is up to each of us to find the silver lining.  The revelation to me was that the more positive I acted (and sometimes one has to start as "act as if" until it becomes natural), the more people liked me.  That people LIKED me was a revelation.  Today I have more friends than I've ever had.  It is not the life I would have asked for, but it is a good one, and I don't make myself nuts comparing it to the old one.  

My mother became a negative buzzkill that no one wanted to be with, and she was miserable after she was widowed for the last 12 years of her life.  I vowed not to be the same and for me it is working.  For you too, it appears.  I have not done the "vacation alone" thing yet, but you're helping give me the courage to try it.

Solo vacations are very liberating. You do what you want, when you want, without consulting anyone. We are responsible for our own lives.

Bob and I always did everything together and I never imagined that I could do solo traveling. I am fortunate that my sons encouraged me to try it. 

 

 

I've enjoyed my solo vacations, too, and didn't expect that I would.  I've done a few trips with friends and found that I have the bad habit of always being the one to "give in" when we each wanted to do something different. When I go alone I get to do exactly what I want ... or I can choose to do nothing at all. It works for me. 

I wish I could do that. I loved sharing vacations with my husband.

Solo vacations were strange (and expensive) at first, but have become more enjoyable/interesting as time has gone by.

I figure I'll continue doing this for as long as I enjoy the experience. I've been to places in the US and abroad.

I have done some solo travel and some with friends as my destination. Single supplements is expensive but once you accept that and see it as the cost of not sharing with someone who is incompatible you just make the decision. In Australia distance is a problem as I have long waiting periods alone in airports but a good book helps. I belong to a few organisations and kept a few friends from the past but still spend a lot of time alone. I do however indulge in wishful thinking. That imbues the past with a rosy Glow and makes the present less attractive.

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