Friday, September 13, 2013

30-Something And Single

Today Kelly's Korner Blog is having a link up for women over 30 who are single to connect with each other.  And I thought it might be a great time to touch on this subject again.

I have a lot of issues surrounding this topic.

Part of me is working on coming to terms with being single forever.

I mean, there just comes a point when you have to accept things.  I don't want to be this pathetic woman existing in a fantasy, who thinks that everyone can achieve anything in life.  That's just not true.  You can't have it all.  What a ridiculous notion!  I have no idea if it's because we don't all earn the same blessings or the world just needs balance or dumb luck or what.  But I do know that we cannot all have the same things in life.  And we certainly cannot all have everything we want.  I'm working hard on accepting that this life won't likely include a partner.  It isn't what I hoped for or dreamed of, but it's not the end of the world.  Or that's what I'm trying to tell myself, anyway.

Part of me is tired of trying.

I find first and early dates to be exhausting at this point.  I go through phases of going on a lot of them and the excitement just isn't there for me right now.  It's not that I think they are going to be bad.  But a first date is about selling yourself to some guy.  I think I'm super boring at the moment.  I'm just so over me.  And therefore, have zero energy or motivation to put on this song and dance self-PR campaign.

Part of me feels like I'm sitting on the Target clearance rack.

Am I damaged goods because I'm unmarried at this age?  Because many days I feel like I should be half price given my age and lack of children.  I feel dented and inadequate and so last season.  A mean girl recently asked me, after asking my age, what I was doing about getting married because I needed to hurry up.  As if I am not aware with every beat of my heart that I am 35 and my window is rapidly closing on the life I want.

I hate the double standard.

This feeling like life is over if I am unmarried is overwhelmingly a girl thing.  No one would even think to ask a 30-something guy what he was doing to hurry along getting married, implying that his time was almost up to be socially acceptable.  Sowing oats, focusing on career, embracing bachelorhood, and just not interested in marriage are all valid reasons for a guy to be unwed.  But a girl...well she needs to hurry up!  I resent this double standard, and so many others, in life.  It just adds so much more stress to the matter.

I have no single girlfriends.

Well that's not exactly true.  I have a few.  But it requires less than one hand to count them up, and they are not all local.  Even my friends who are a decade younger than me are attached.  It means that all those times that I was the recipient of 2 AM phone calls after friends had bad break ups or crazy dates or wedding planing crises were one way.  Because I would never dream to even call my friends at 2 PM knowing their kiddos are all taking naps or coming home from school.  I missed that boat to call in a return on those favors.  I mostly date in secret.  Not as in I keep it a secret.  But who am I going to tell?  Who really cares at this point?  Everyone has these lives that are bigger and fuller and more involved than mine.  Which isn't a real issue.  Or rarely.  So that's not as much a complaint as it is me pointing out something the more socially acceptable married gals never realize.  When you are this age and single, you're sort of out there alone.  Gone are the days of the group dates and group outings or over analyze the date phone calls with girlfriends.  They just don't exist at this age.

But life must go on.

I don't walk around in tears every day, so please don't get that impression.  I mean, I live my normal little life.  I'm busy and involved and working hard on a variety of projects.  I have hobbies and favorite pastimes.  I have a fur baby.  But there is never a moment that passes when I am not in tune with my age and marital status.  I don't want this to define me.  I don't want to be seen as the last single girl standing.  That's not cool.  But getting to the point of acceptance, something for which I beg God daily, has not been an easy process, with many set-backs along the way.


Elizabeth said...

I wish I could reach thru the laptop & give you a hug!!

Have you ever heard of Lynette Lewis? She spoke at my church's women's night last year & she was AMAZING! She has an awesome story how she herself didn't get married until she was 42...check it out if you have time.

Hope you have a great Friday! :)

Lindy D. said...

I am 57 years old and have never been married. I've had a few long term relationships that didn't work out. When I look back, I think I missed out on a lot of nice guys that I thought were too staid. I am especially sad that I never had children and if I had it to do over again, I would adopt as a single parent.

That said, I think that any lifestyle has its pros and cons. Some of my married friends are very happy but just as many have boring or miserable marriages. So remember that being married, per se, is by no means a ticket to happiness.

I don't have many unmarried friends either. In fact, three of my single friends have (re)married in the last several years. And yes, they were all in their fifties - one woman had never been married before and the other two were long divorced. So despite what you read, marriage can happen at any age. They all married nice guys with great jobs ... two attorneys and one investment banker.

I never feel that I am "damaged" or "inadequate." Some part of being married is just luck ... meeting the right man at the right time. Some of it may be that you are ambivalent about marriage, perhaps because of your family of origin.

And it really IS a lot of work to find someone. I just read an article about Katie Couric who just got engaged 15 years after her husband died. She said for all these years she asked everyone she knew to introduce her to eligible men.

Here is a link to an article I find interesting about reasons one might not married. (Ignore the headings.) I see some of myself in this, specifically that no man is good enough for me. Just some food for thought.

Alex said...

Keep your head up! It's so awesome you still get involved and keep your life busy! They say love finds you when you least expect it. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Katherine said...

I feel like I wrote this. I have 3 years on you! I keep telling myself ok I won't have kids past 42 so I need to get busy and find someone. But the thought is exhausting. I feel exactly the way you do.

Katherine said...

I feel like I wrote this. I have 3 years on you! I keep telling myself ok I won't have kids past 42 so I need to get busy and find someone. But the thought is exhausting. I feel exactly the way you do.

Katherine said...

I may be posting twice not sure. Something weird just happened. Lol. I feel the exact same way you do. You are not alone. It gave me comfort to read your thoughts and feelings.

AJLinBoston said...

I wish we lived in the same state and could hang out! I understand what you mean about not having many single friends--I was lucky not to experience that until recently: the average age that people in Massachusetts get married is somewhere around 30!

Brenda said...

Hey, thanks for stopping by my blog and for sharing this. I can relate. :\

Ruth said...

This so applies to me too. I wish we lived closer. I don't have anyone to really go do anything with here.

MCW said...

The double standard does suck, unfortunately our bodies make it a little harder for us!

I don't really know what to say about this post. You know that I am your age and single, and yes it can suck at times. Every once in awhile I think "why me." Then I quickly kick myself in the ass. Feeling sorry for myself gets me no where and no one wants to be with a girl who feels that way. And men can sense that attitude from miles away! I will never ever give up on finding someone. There is someone out there for everyone. I believe this with my whole heart. Maybe I met him a few weeks ago, maybe I will meet him in 5 years, but it will happen. You have to believe that too. As far as damaged goods, I don't feel that way either. In fact I feel lucky that I am not in a bad marriage and that I have lived an amazing life. There are plenty of good men still out there, who would think you are a great catch. It does suck you feel like yo cannot talk to your friends about guys you date. I bet they do want to to hear and are happy to be a sounding board from you. Mermaid hears about all of my dates, the good, the bad the ugly and is supportive and a real cheerleader. You can always call me! I'll listen!!!

Anonymous said...

I hear you loud and clear about no local single girlfriends - it's not that I don't adore my friends but sometimes I wonder if that's what makes some days harder than others.

Andrea said...

I am with you. (found you through Kelly's blog and your comment on my blog)


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