Friday, December 05, 2008

Have Her Chances for Love Passed Her By?


You are so fortunate to have found your life partner and have a nice life. I am almost sixty years old and have waited patiently all of my life for my life partner.

A college graduate from a private women's college, I returned home to find my classmates married. I live in a small town and have worked in a variety of fields and eventually worked my way up from teller to vice president in a local bank. I currently am a caregiver to my 93 year old father. Have always been the caregiver to my parents and siblings. Also take care of an animal shelter by myself.

Do not get asked out because most of the men are married (they flirt a lot). The single men are divorced and too scared to get into another relationship (they can barely talk).

I really expected to have a husband and family, but no one ever chose me. I am approachable and speak to people. People whom I don't know even speak to me for advice when I am out shopping. I have worked with women who got divorced and the next day there was a line of guys wanting to date them. Meanwhile I was totally ignored by men.

About three years ago, a guy who I have known for twenty years made his move. He is a very intelligent doctor who has a practice nearby but lives an hour away. He seems to care about me but never asked me out or gave me any flowers or gifts. He has been divorced three times but that was before I knew him. He told me about his parents and siblings (he has no children) but didn't show me his house or introduce me to his family.

Two years ago I broke my collarbone and he was the first doctor to treat me. Then he never checked on my progress - no calls, did not come by, no soup, nothing. I was shocked that he wasn't concerned. He also treats my family and wants to make sure I can reach him and have all of his phone numbers.

Well, this relationship is hopeless and in the past two years I have aged a lot. It is the holidays and once again I must go through them alone.

I have prayed to God for years and sat in church with all of the married men and jealous wives. Just think that God forgot me. I don't get anything for Valentine's Day and I usually buy my own birthday gifts. Don't get to celebrate anniversaries and go on nice trips. Mainly just work all the time. This past Spring I did make an effort to go to several concerts by myself for a change of pace. Just have a lot less energy now. It amazes me how so many people found their life partners.


Dear D.-

You didn't ask for any advice, so I won't give you any.

I will say this, though: I don't believe God forgot you (I don't believe he forgets anybody). I do believe that age is irrelevant. If you're in good health, age doesn't matter. (My husband's aunt is vital and healthy at 104; my husband's brother, an athlete, died of an aneurysm at 20.)

As far as finding my life partner, it was less about finding someone to choose me and more about determining what I wanted in a man, and then deciding that I "had" him.

This took concentrated effort. It meant acting as if, thinking as if, believing as if the guy truly existed on a daily basis in my life, house, and car. For example, I stopped sleeping in the middle of the bed to make room for him.

This may sound like hocus-pocus, but I conditioned my subconscious mind to believe this man and our relationship existed. What the subconscious mind accepts as reality, it brings to pass. There are lots of good books on this subject, including Positive Imaging: The Powerful Way to Change Your Life
by Norman Vincent Peale.

Just so you know: Prior to meeting my husband of 16 years, my longest relationship lasted nine months. And it was a disaster.

I don't believe for one minute that love is out of the question for you.


Anonymous said...

Dear D. Your letter was heart-breaking for me. I try and live a full and kind life and try not to dwell on being alone; but it doesn't take away that loneliness.

Best of luck dear. I will keep hoping and sending you good thoughts because I hope I am not too old as well.

All my best for the holidays. I truly know how difficult it is. I really do. Have a Happy Holiday and a great New Year!

Anonymous said...

P.S. On the subject of the doctor man. My guess is that he comes into your life when it works for him. I know you want to keep those little glimmers because when he is around he probably makes you feel great, cares about you in his limited way and you feel less alone...but in the long run it is sort of clogging you from finding something more fulfilling (this is advice I should follow myself by the way and I am currently not which I why I can feel this situation so well).

The little bit that he is giving you may actually be increasing your feelings of loneliness because of everything is his not...while still under the guise of "boyfriend."

Best of luck with that one. It takes a lot of courage to walk away from something like that; especially if you let yourself see it as the only option.

Don't let it be hopeless...let it be the situation that has run its course that you now must compassionately let free. It is aging you because of the stress of trying to shape something that simply isn't in the same place that you are.

Terry said...

Dear Anonymous-

Thank you for sharing your very wise and compassionate insight. I appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

The problems of women "of a certain age" finding partners is not to be taken lightly. I'm 50 and can tell you, it isn't easy. BUT, I think the comment that most stood out in this letter was " one ever chose me". I don't have the magic bullet, but finding a partner is more about choosing than being chosen. Visualization is all well and good (I don't deny the power of positive thinking, but I'll withhold my comments on whether this really works or not), but taking an active role in your dating life is very important, maybe even more so as we get older. Try online dating and expand your range outside of your own town. There are Meet-ups and organizations for people with all sorts of interests out there. Try them. Finally, it's tough to have a lot of energy when you are a caregiver to aging parents and other family, etc. You MUST make time for yourself. If that means hiring help, do so. If nothing else, you'll be able to say that you TRIED. If nothing else, you may make some great friends. Hopefully, along the way, you'll meet a man. But whatever you do, be proactive and don't sit around waiting for a man to find you. You have much to offer the right person, so don't sell yourself short.

Anonymous said...

One more thing: a man who has never asked you out isn't interested in more than a friendship. (Read "He's Just Not That Into You"). It's important to know when to move on. As I said, if you're truly serious about finding a partner, put yourself out in the workd and don't sell yourself short.

Terry said...

Hi, Anonymous-

"...finding a partner is more about choosing than being chosen."

You're absolutely right.

As for visualization, it works but it has to be done consistently and with feeling. It's free, too, which is a nice bonus.

Please check out this post for one woman's experience:

If it worked for her, I imagine it can work for anybody.

Frustrated said...

I don't know where to post this question.
I don't really want to talk to my friends about it because it's kind of embarrassing.
The girl that I'm dating I love very much. We get along really good.
But when we fool around she can get really physical.
I'm in pretty good shape. I'm about 5'7, I box and I also help teach boxing courses at the gym.

Well, the girl I'm dating is a bit taller (5'11) and alittle bit bigger than me. Not fat, just thicker. I'm only about 145 and she's about 160. Maybe I'm saying all of this to justify my question so it doesn't look so dumb.

When we fool around I can tell she's a bit stronger than I am. That alone kind of bothers me. But it is what it is. I have a pretty small waist and lean muscle while she has pretty big hips and bigger leg muscles.

This wouldn't be that big of a deal if she didn't get too physical. It's like she enjoys trying to hurt me.
Like if I'm on top she'll wrap her legs around really tight at times. I tell her to stop. But sometimes she'll actually get mad and want to stop. But I don't know what else to do. I can't even catch a deep breath and it feels like my ribs are going to crack in. I'm really not trying to exxagerate this. But it's not any fun for me. And it's nothing I can talk to my friends about. They would think I was a ......... a really weak guy.

She gets mad if I ask her to please me "down there". But I do that like 10 times to her 1 time she ever does it for me. Many times she'll make us stop fooling around completely. Again, I'm not exxagerating about this. And, to make matters worse she has me lay on my back with her straddling over my face. Opposed to her laying on her back. But then she grinds so hard.
Sometimes pushing down so hard that I can't catch a breath. THEN she'll get upset at me for "squirming" too much!!

When we are not fooling around it's GREAT. THat's so odd to say. You'd think that I would like to fool around with her. I do and I would more. But it seems that the longer we've been together the more this element has been coming up.
Then there's the embarrassing factor. I want to be a boxer. I don't need to think I'm the toughest guy in the world. I'm clearly not. I can live with her being physically stronger. But when she's in the mood and in that particular mood I get intimidated.
I would never hit her. Never ever ever. But, she's squeezed my ribs so hard at times that I have had to miss sparring. I'll even tell her before fooling around that I have sparring over the next couple of weeks (I can make okay $$ being a sparring partner). There have already been 2 times when I couldn't do that because of her acting like Kathleen Turner in War of the Roses.

Is there any chance she'll lose interest in doing this/acting this way? Is she trying to show me that she's in charge when we fool around? Should I end the relationship? But if I do that, I could see her telling people about her hurting me and me being weak, not able to 'handle' her. That would be embarrassing.

Sassy said...

Wow. I'm so sorry about D and that her life is lonely. But I have to say that I heard a lot of self-pity and inaction on her part.

D, I know it must be hard for you with all your responsibilities (such as your father and job). But you can either use them as a "excuse" or you can accept them and work a good life around them.

One comment was to look for some help so you can spend some time for you. As a VP of a bank, you may certainly have the means to do so.

Also, I (and this is some tough love here) think that if you are starting with a defeatist attitude, you will be defeated. I heard no joy or fun in your life. One of the things my sweetheart (I'm 48 and have been married and divorced) say that he likes about me is that I'm fun. I'll go try something, laugh when I fail and put time into my friends and family in a fun way.

You said you went to some concerts. Well, good start. Now, enjoy that time. Don't just go to say that you went. And if you want to go on a trip, go. Even if you have to go alone. Or find a singles trip to go with.

I will keep you in my thoughts. Good luck. Only you can make yourself happy. No one, not even the perfect man, can.

Terry said...

Sassy! So good to hear from you. Thanks for weighing in!