A Woman Alone at 60

“If I leave him, I will be sad. If I stay with him, I will be sad…..It is like I am meant to be sad….no matter what I do…..”

She is 60, divorced twice and her current boyfriend insists on paying his ex-wife’s bills. They have not had sex in months and he doesn’t initiate any intimacy. She has tried to initiate closeness, tried to talk with him about the distance between them, his relationship with his ex-wife, their future. He doesn’t listen, walks away or gets mad.

She made a promise to herself she would stay with him for the next 6 months to save up to get her own place and move out. We were discussing her life and what the future holds when she commented (above).

This is a classic and heart-wrenching situation.

I empathized with her…..but told her that her conclusion was wrong.

While yes, currently, she is or will be sad if she stays or goes. But will she stay sad? That will be up to her and her choices.

I asked her what singles do when they retire….she struggled. “GRANDKIDS!” I practically yelled (She has 2 grandkids she lamented not spending enough time with.). She looked at me. “…or travel (yes, by yourself or find a girlfriend you can stand), or volunteer, or take up watercolors or read and join a book club or buy a motorcycle!” We both laughed.

“This is not what I expected my life would be when I was 60.”

“Me neither… I am a ‘good little Catholic boy’ who got divorced, with a motorcycle, 9 tattoos and 17 Norfolk Pine trees in my house and office, 7 of which are 5 ft or higher.  Have a 59 years old girlfriend…that I describe her as a “younger women” since I am 60. I have a 16 lb dog that thinks he weighs 106 lbs, is constantly getting in my spot in bed when I get up to pee at night and who sits on my back porch and looks in at me making me feel guilty for not taking him for a walk! I didn’t plan on any of that and I deeply appreciate and love those parts of my life all of which occurred since I turned 48. Since when did anything in your life turn out the way you thought it would be like?”