August 16, 2022 at 10:09 am #1112955hfantodsParticipant
Hahaha good on you for looking at the website!! I hope it works out for them. Thanks for the book recommendation. I’m trying to get back into reading so that is good.August 17, 2022 at 10:33 am #1112962TheLadyEGuest
Welp, happy thread-aversary everyone! I will be 40 in November and while I’ve dated a TON since this thread started (and detailed much of it here), I am currently very single and am not even really looking for a partner at this time. Since my breakup after 2 years during Covid, I’ve had a ton of health and family struggles and for the first time in literally my entire life, I do not have the “spoons”/emotional availability to date or make room for another person. Especially since, by and large, straight men (or at least the men I apparently happen to find) require quite a bit of emotional labor even in the early stages of dating.
I honestly never thought I would be “still” single at 39. It used to be my absolute worst nightmare. In the past 4ish years, though, I’ve seen several of my friends who married young (like right out of college) go through divorces or near-divorces, and my parents are also really really struggling in their marriage after my dad had an affair for 4.5 YEARS. Soooo IDK. I also realized recently that I’ve never had a relationship where the man really just loved me for me and didn’t try to fix or change me in some way. Even my ex of 2 years, who was arguably the best relationship I’ve had, became very critical and “fixit” with me toward the end.
I’ve definitely become very set in my ways. I don’t have to worry about what another person wants to eat, or their morning routine, or cleaning up after someone else. I do what I want when I want, as long as bills are paid and my job gets done. It’s pretty peaceful. It feels almost uncomfortable thinking about living with another person at this point. Maybe that’s a defense mechanism I’ve built up, or a way that I can emotionally deal with the fact that I’ll most likely turn 40 single, but it is what it is. It hasn’t been for lack of trying, I’ll tell you that.August 17, 2022 at 12:57 pm #1112965
I felt like that too about it being pretty easy and peaceful being single, and like how on earth could I share a home with someone. Even now, when my husband goes on work trips, there’s some sense of relief to be able to work longer hours to get my work done, eat whatever food is in the house (rather than going out and eating high-calorie food or cooking a meal) etc. Even though he does everything around the house when he’s here! Only being responsible for yourself definitely has a lot going for it.
I think at some point you’re going to find a partner, but even if you don’t you’re going to be okay.August 17, 2022 at 2:44 pm #1112968TheLadyEGuest
Thanks Kate 🙂 I’ve had my parents here off and on (one or the other) throughout the year to help me because of my health struggles, and goodness, just the constant trying to figure out the next meal is mentally exhausting. When I’m on my own, I literally decide 5 minutes beforehand what I want- whether it’s in the fridge or whatever – and that’s it. And there’s zero negotiation. I’ve been living alone for so long that I’m just so not used to cleaning up after anyone except my dogs: like if my dad leaves crumbs on the counter or a K-cup by the sink or dishes in the sink, omg, it sends me off. I guess a partner might be a bit easier to live with, though, lol.
Interestingly, my best friend (she’s been married since we were 23)’s twin sister got married at 37, is pregnant now at 38 and will be 39 when she has her first baby. It all happened super fast. Now, her husband voted for Trump at least once (perhaps twice) so I’m not *jealous* of their relationship, even though he does treat her very well, but yeah no…but it’ll be interesting to see her/them as parents when I know she’s a thousand times more fastidious about cleanliness than I am. My best friend and her husband were one of the couples who were very close to divorce; they actually separated last year for almost 2 months at their counselors’ advice, and it took a ton of behavior change and commitment to improving for them to get back together. My best friend became a shell of herself in the year preceding that split. Not to mention the absolute hell on earth that has been the last almost-year since my mother discovered my father was having an affair.
ANYWHO. I still want a life partner, but suffice it to say my standards/dealbreakers/knowledge of myself have all changed/increased since even when this thread started.August 17, 2022 at 4:38 pm #1112969
@TheLadyE I’m glad you updated us! I was wondering how you’d been. It’s okay to be 40 and single. And also okay to love your freedom and space while simultaneously hoping to meet someone. If I’m ever single again, I suspect I’d eventually want companionship again, but not sure I’d want to do the apps again. They were exhausting.
It’s good to have standards and know your dealbreakers, too. Sometimes I think back on the garbage I put up with in my 20s. I excused a lot of dusty-ass behavior that I wish I hadn’t.
ETA: Some of the guys I dated in my 20s I know are married now, and I’ve wondered if they’ve changed/grown/matured or just found a spouse who doesn’t push back on bullshit. Like one boyfriend from when I was in school, he was chronically jealous. Became a bit controlling. Cheated, too! The last few months were pretty bad. When I found out years later through a mutual connection that he’d gotten married, my reaction was, “Who on earth would marry him???” Curiosity got the best of me, I did some Googling, and while neither has much of an internet presence these days, I laughed aloud when I saw she has a PhD in psychology. Like she theoretically counsels women who end up in relationships with crappy guys like him!
August 17, 2022 at 5:20 pm #1112971ktfranParticipant
- This reply was modified 3 months, 2 weeks ago by Copa.
One of my best girlfriends is 40+, single and thriving. She was supposed to host a big blowout for her 40th. Well, that would have been June 2020, so she did it last June and had a 40+2 party. It was basically a wedding reception without the wedding. She rented out a venue. Food truck. Drinks. Photographer. Cake. Music. Flowers. It was a blast!!
And as @kate said, I LOVE when the husband goes on work trips or a weekend trip with friends. I love the freedom it affords me to just be. I lived on my own from 2004 – 2017 (minus the one year I was engaged), so more than half of my post-college life.
And like @copa said, if anything were to happen to the husband (knock on wood nothing does), I wouldn’t be in a rush to find someone new. I like the idea of a long term partner, mostly someone to travel with, but I’d be fine without one.August 17, 2022 at 7:22 pm #1112972
I used to eat soup for dinner and take the dog for a really long walk.
My dog now just wants to wander down Massachusetts Avenue and talk to literally every single person. People on drugs, Jehova’s Witnesses, the homeless people who are into 5G conspiracy and steal from the supermarket and CVS, everyone. He was talking to a woman yesterday on my way to Walgreens and she told me that “the gentleman who walks this dog” won’t let her talk to him, and picks him up when he sees her, and she thinks it’s because she’s Black. So then I had to keep trying to assure her that my husband isn’t racist, he’s just busy. She asked me 3x if it’s because she’s Black and I’m like no no, but I could tell she didn’t believe me. Awkward. She’s like, “this dog likes me!”August 18, 2022 at 11:11 am #1112984
I also enjoy when the boyfriend goes out of town. I don’t even do anything particularly interesting while he’s gone and I’ve noticed I don’t even stretch out across the bed or even sleep in the middle. Last time he was gone for a long weekend, I went to a girls night with some friends, but I do that even when he’s in town.
I’d say he’s the one who adjusted more to how I like to live my day-to-day. I do more of the cooking, but I always get to pick what we eat and he’s happy to go along with it, even on nights he cooks. We’ve laughed about the things the other does that we found a little strange about the other’s habits when we moved in together. I do think I can be a bit rigid and have been working on that.
Also meant to mention that maybe a few months ago there were articles trending about research that said unmarried, childless women are the happiest demographic. That initially women are happier in a marriage but eventually end up less happy than their single counterparts.
I seem to be in some minority of women who never really thought about marriage or their wedding day or whatever when I was younger. Like I never thought I’d be married by a specific age or worried about it much. Even my friend who didn’t date at all until 27-28 knew exactly what she wanted her wedding to be like. The only time I ever felt that pressure was when I lived in an area where everyone was at least on their starter marriage (or at least pushing hard for a ring from their live-in SO!) by 26, as mentioned.
August 19, 2022 at 9:32 am #1113011
- This reply was modified 3 months, 2 weeks ago by Copa.
I went out for happy hour with two gal pals last night, one of whom ended her long-term, live-in relationship a couple weeks ago. I wasn’t sure how she’d be — she’s just shy of 34 and one of those friends who was very much dating with marriage in mind and always talked about wanting to start a family — but she seemed okay. She even echoed some of the sentiments on this thread: she doesn’t see herself rushing back into dating, doesn’t think she’ll try the apps again, and is reconsidering how important marriage and kids are to her after all. She’s excited to try her hand at new hobbies and be happily single for once. I’m here for that attitude. Meanwhile our other friend is engaged and currently wedding obsessed. Started drunkenly telling us that her ring fits her + her fiance’s brand as a couple – whatever that means.August 19, 2022 at 7:30 pm #1113014hfantodsParticipant
Hah fourth enjoying every my husband is out of town. True about staying later at work. I do like spreading out in the bed haha. My husband works from home whereas I’m at the office full time so I feel like he’s been in the house alone a lot more. Granted he is working but still.
I feel like my husband is an equal partner in terms of cooking and laundry and other choices. I couldn’t imagine something different. Even though my mom was a working professional, she did and does nu dad’s laundry.
On a different topic, what do you use as a work bag? For a while I’ve used a tote bag purse that can fit a laptop but I realize I could use a real laptop bag and carry a regular purse.August 19, 2022 at 7:56 pm #1113015
I just use a big pleather tote from target with a tote organizer inside that I can easily switch into my nice tote for weekends. I need a big enough bag for work to carry laptop, water bottle, cup for iced coffee, 3 pairs of goddamn glasses, contact tracer, badge, wallet, notebook, planner, and other shit. And be able to grab stuff easily out of it.
I have had a nice Tory Burch work bag in the past that I really liked, but eventually the straps on a bag always get wrecked if you’re carrying that much shit around.
I wouldn’t take anything nicer than a Kate Spade or Tory Burch to work.August 19, 2022 at 8:27 pm #1113016ktfranParticipant
I use a backpack. But I’m usually walking or taking public transportation. I’m too old and my lower back is too bad to walk three miles with my laptop in anything other than a backpack. I’d prefer a tote though.
I think my backpack is either from Everlane or Lo and Sons.