I promised myself I wouldn’t become glib on this blog, but sometimes what I’m thinking about is painful and difficult to admit. Glib positivity would be easier.
This past month I spent time with a peer, a never married and childless woman my age, who seems to have had her fair share of psychological struggles and who hasn’t always coped in ways I would deem healthy and proactive. She’s managed some impressive triumphs and is doing better now than in the past, but she still battles.
Here is the part that’s hard for me to confess: it is sometimes difficult for me to spend time with her because it feels like looking in a funhouse mirror as to what could have been or could still be (or maybe currently is without my knowing!) my fate. She shares many of the familiar frustrations of older single women– the lack of social outlets and difficulties of finding a partner– but her situation throws a shadow of doubt on my own, making me question my own psychological health.
Even more difficult to confess: my sense that I should have experienced a brighter outcome relative to my choices.