never married, over forty, a little bitter


I went to a holiday party the other night and had fun dancing with men of all ages and backgrounds, in opposition to a couple who were conspicuously “all over each other” and who remained in a tight embrace for the duration of the evening.

I’m open to experiencing again the intimacy and support of a relationship, but that evening I reflected on the drawbacks of the dyad.  I had so much fun meeting new people and feeling open to the party; they, on the other hand, seemed closed off, a party of two.


I too have felt the dread of babymania over the royal heir:

It’s interesting reading the comments, such as this one:

When my husband and I met, we were friends with all these other couples and we were all in the dating stage. All the couples ended up getting married, including us but we were the last to get married. We watched them all buy homes, have children, and, as my husband described it last night, watching them all acquire the things in life everyone dreams about. It was just us and this other couple that didn’t have children and we felt more normal with them. And, all those couples who had kids excluded us from their lives in all their parties. Now my husband’s friend and his wife are part of that group, and we are left out in the cold. He said he feels more alone in this than ever. It also doesn’t help that a childless couple we were good friends with moved out of State 2 years ago and we haven’t been able to find a replacement. You are lucky to have 2 other couples in your situation because it really can be a comfort. All the people we know who have children really don’t understand our emotions about this, they pity us and that’s the worst part of all. I understand your husband’s difficulty talking about this — most men can’t talk about their feelings to begin with. But even for me, as a woman and the infertility was all my issue, I couldn’t talk about it until recently. 

For the first time it has occurred to me that in some respects it is easier to deal with being childless as a single woman.  Of course, having the emotional support of a partner would be great, but being entirely outside the circle of coupledom keeps me removed from all the parent talk and in a different realm altogether.

the overshare

I’m a big fan of hiding people from my Facebook feed, and I do find photos of babies cute, but I think this writer missed one big point:

At first I felt a bit guilty about posting all these photos on Facebook – along with the status updates about his milestones and the occasional gush about how much I love him. I worried that I would be boring my childless friends who were out doing exciting things; achieving brilliantly at work, going to fun parties, attending concerts. They expressed intelligent political views, shared links of cultural significance, travelled to exotic locations. Meanwhile I was posting photo after photo of my son on his sheepskin rug.

Never once does she consider friends who might be infertile or otherwise experiencing difficulty having kids.  It has not occurred to her that they, or even women who have chosen not to have children, might feel isolated amongst the barrage of baby photos.


Yesterday I heard about a moderately successful celebrity (not a household name but if you really pay attention to the Industry you would know who he was), comfortable but not wealthy, who, in his early forties, has just taken up with a striking model, in her early twenties, from a prominent family.  Before this new girlfriend he’d been in a long relationship with an extremely attractive woman in his same line of work who is just a few years younger than him.

I can certainly imagine the new, young girlfriend being smitten by his charm and him being taken with her beauty and an attraction spontaneously igniting;  I can’t presume he will only date younger women from this point on.  And yet.  The whole thing feels so aggressive against women his own age who are his peers.  His former girlfriend seemed like a much more equal match.  I also have to wonder about the stability of this new arrangement.  Fast forward a few years:  she’s 30 and still young and beautiful, while he’s pushing 50.  But, I suppose he may not care that much about the long term.

Recently I heard of another older performer who briefly met and married a woman from the other side of the world, a woman who doesn’t speak English and who relocated her children to live with him here.  I just thought… really?  You couldn’t find an English-speaking woman in a city of millions and millions of people?

Then again, I live here and my own prospects aren’t great, especially when attractive older men, already in short supply, choose options like the ones above, options I personally wouldn’t be interested in.

I’ve been reading this book, though, called The Means of Reproduction by Michelle Goldberg and realizing just how much worse women have it in other parts of the world, so I’m feeling lucky all the same.





right and wrong

In my twenties, I went on a few dates with a man I suspected was gay, so I never let things develop.  Years later, in his mid-thirties, he broke off an engagement and came out of the closet.  Around that same time, while discussing my frustrating dating life, he said quite pointedly, “Did you ever think if none of these dates work out that the problem is you?”

It struck me as ironic for him, of all people, to ask that question.

I thought of that conversation again while reading this:

So naturally, you’ll be distracted, searching for clues in what I say, or don’t say… in my mannerisms and in my face. You’ll wonder how this happened to me… how I ended up single and without the children I always dreamed I’d have. If you’re younger than I am, you’ll either confirm to yourself that it could never possibly happen to you, or, now that you’ve met me, you’ll wonder if it possibly could.

If you’re married and a mom, you’ll pat yourself on the back for knowing better that I did. Knowing ‘what’ exactly, neither of us is quite sure, but you’ll let out a sigh of relief that you’re safe and sound, despite any hidden challenges you are facing behind closed doors. You knew better, and that’s enough for you.

And the gentlemen… well if we’re on a date, you’ll find a way to let me know that you’re OK with my age, notwithstanding your own. You’ll credit yourself for dating a woman who may no longer be able to have biological children — or be relieved for that very fact. Either way, you’ll let me know. You’ll tell me how you usually date younger women but find women ‘my age’ (often your age) refreshing. Or, you’ll tell me that your friends ‘warned’ you about my age, but you told them it didn’t matter. “You don’t look it!” you’ll say as if it were consolation.