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wundayatta's avatar

When you've reached a certain age, how do you cope with the possibility you will be alone the rest of your life?

Asked by wundayatta (58581points) April 27th, 2010

Is it possible to lose the feeling of wanting to be with someone, to be in love and to be happy that way? If you knew for certain that you were meant to live the rest of your life alone, would that enable you to stop thinking that you will meet the right guy (or gal)? Should you just figure that anyway and try to be happy alone?

Life is uncertain. Maybe you haven’t had a date in three years. How do you deal with it? Do you keep on hoping and trying? Or is it time to throw in the towel and prepare for a single life the rest of your life? How can you throw in the towel?

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31 Answers

frdelrosario's avatar

Outgrowing the myth of “being in love and to be happy that way” is one of the best byproducts of being “a certain age”.

free_fallin's avatar

I do very well on my own. Sometimes people are too damn complicated for me to enjoy being around. I never actually “throw in the towel.” I just live my life normally and if someone comes along, then fine. If they don’t, that’s ok too.

ChaosCross's avatar

It certainly is copyable, I do feel lonely at times, but that does not stop me from enjoying life. We are creatures of companionship, but we do not need it necessarily.

wonderingwhy's avatar

With others or without, your happiness comes from within.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I think some people never reach that point and remain hopeless romantics till the day they die – which is awesome, imo.

marinelife's avatar

I think I could be happy alone, but I don’t think I would ever give up on the possibility of love.

Trillian's avatar

I went nine years between physical contact with my youngest daughter’s father and my now ex SO. I felt no lack at all. I’m already a complete person without the need for another to “complete me” (Stupid Hollywood).
If I am destined to be alone, I will mostly miss a good conversation and the companionship of an equal while watching a thunderstorm or a good movie. But I realize that I am a difficult person to be around and that most men cannot cope with my quirks and foibles, my intellect puts more off and I’m a huge bitch. I can cope with being alone. I enjoy the solitude. And I always have you guys when I need some conversation.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I could handle being alone ;)

Pandora's avatar

Not really speaking from experience but I was in love once before my husband and I thought I would find someone else. Well the next guy wanted to marry me but I thought I wouldn’t get over the first guy and almost settled. But then I figured it wouldn’t be fair to either of us and decided whether I ever fell in love again or didn’t it didn’t matter. I could make my own happiness along the way. Shortly after I met my husband but I had pretty not chosen to give up or wonder if love was still possible. I didn’t give up on maybe finding love nor did I let it hold me hostage. Figured I only had one life and wasn’t going to waste it on what if. Best thing to do is never close the door but don’t check it either every 5 seconds to see if someones knocking. Just leave it unlocked and if someone comes through, fine. If not also fine.

netgrrl's avatar

At 51, I’m pretty much there. Yes, I’d love to be in the right relationship, but I’m not holding my breath in the meantime. All I can do is be happy and remain open to the possibility. There’s times that’s easier than other times. Ask me again when I’m sick in bed with the flu and I might give a different answer.

chyna's avatar

I would hate to think that at this point in my life I will never be with another man. I enjoy being with the right guy, but right now, it looks like that isn’t going to happen. I would love to be able to just throw in the towel, know that there will never be someone out there to share the journey with me, but I’m a hopeless romantic. It would be easier if the desire to share my life would just leave, but it hasn’t. This is not to say that I am less of a person without someone else. I have lived most of my life alone, so I guess that is why I would like to have someone now.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

It hasn’t happened to me yet that I’ve given up hope. I actually have more hope than a lot of people because of family experiences. I have grandparents who divorced but then went on to have other spouses and ended up well matched to spend the rest of their lives with just one person, I want that and hope for it to be that way for me too. It seems strange to me this hasn’t happened yet but I’m impatient by nature.

YARNLADY's avatar

What with aons, grandsons, and ‘coming soon’ great grandsons, I don’t envision any such thing ever happening to me.

loser's avatar

I’ve accepted the fact that I will probably be alone for the rest of my life. I cope with alcohol.

Cruiser's avatar

As much as I enjoy to be alone I do feel you can always find someone to relate to if just to share a cup of coffee and talk about whatever. Plus you don’t always have to assign yourself as a S/O in order to have the benefit of companionship.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Everyone, Please, Please, don’t throw in the towel. There are too many nice people out there.
Just look at the responses above. I wish I could set you all up on blind dates with each other.

Am I just being a hopeless romantic?

MissAnthrope's avatar

I know I’m not really “old”, but I assess my past and my current situation, weighed with all the things I really hope for myself (marriage and kids), and part of me loses a bit more hope every day. It’s just the lot that the universe has laid out for me, being different and introverted and lost in my head all the time, and that for whatever reason, no one is ever interested in dating me. I’m trying to accept that I very well might not meet “the one”, ever. I am terrified of being old and alone, of dying alone.. but I have not had the best luck with relationships and I guess I’m generally better off when I’m on my own.

However, I don’t think I could ever totally squelch the part of me that is undyingly idealistic (sometimes annoyingly so), so while I guess I could resign myself to being single and independent, part of me will always be hoping I meet my ideal mate. I feel like all I need is one person who loves me for who I am, who believes in me, and is my partner going through the world for good or bad.

gailcalled's avatar

I’ve been married (twice), I’ve had and raised kids, I’ve had lovely boyfriends in between and after the second marriage.. Now I have no man in the house and I am thrilled. What a relief to try something different. No more endless negotiations, no more twisting myself into knots.

I get love and support from my daughter, other family members and close friends. And I find myself amusing and interesting. I almost said that I found myself entertaining, but thank heavens, I don’t have to do much of that anymore. (gerund or participle?)

It is bliss.

jazmina88's avatar

enjoy being…...

find joy within…..

there are many friendships all the way, but you are your best friend.

Coloma's avatar

I’m in the just fine as it is camp.

I’m open but not seeking, happy, mellow, love my space and doing what I want, find myself very amusing! lol

A good friend just got out of a 5 year relationship, has been married 2x and is one that will never give up wanting a relationship.

I’ve lost about 95% of my desire for comprimise!

It’s all good! ;-)

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

I don’t believe people should give up on finding someone with whom to share their life. Though I was previously married, I did not find my true love until I was fifty or so. I hope we will be together until we are both very old because I can’t imagine finding someone so perfect for me ever again. My worst fear is that she might die long before me. I don’t like to be alone and I adore being with my dear wife. I cherish ever day we have together but I don’t ever want to be without her.

Coloma's avatar

I think it’s very important to embrace ones own solitude, enjoy your own company, be happy and emotionally self regulating.

I think it’s sad how many fear their aloneness and look to others to keep their emotional equalibrium stable.

I sure don’t want anyone to want to be with me out of a neurotic fear of being alone, anymore than I want someone to stay because of an ‘investment.’ Gag!

Far too many people seek relationship for the wrong reasons, not as an enhancement of who they already are, a genuine appriciation for anothers unique triats, a desire to share, but because of some inner lack, fear, emptyness.

Thats a huge burden to place on another, the ‘make’ me feel happy, okay, safe, secure, comforted….OMG…noooooooo! lol

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I like what @Coloma wrote about another person being an enhancement to your life, someone you want to share all the best of what you know, someone who gives you some new perspective too.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

I agree that those we include in our lives can greatly enhance who we already are and the joy of sharing what we have to offer our friends and loved ones is very special. Entering a relationship because of our perceive deficits and needs for the support of others is an approach that diminishes who you are and ultimately devalues your partner as well. It is a kind of parasitic relationship founded on fear.

No one can fix you, or make you feel what you have been unable to feel on your own. Not even a professional therapist can do these things.

Zen_Again's avatar

Every other question I answer, this one appears to the right of my screen – taunting me…

wundayatta's avatar

Mwah ha ha ha ha ha hah

Zen_Again's avatar

I guess I am doomed to end my life alone.

Jabe73's avatar

@Coloma I agree with what you said. I think most people are in love with the relationships rather than the people they are with.

I will add one more thing, I’ve noticed from alot of bogus advice I’ve read from these so called dating “experts” that tells guys to “fake it till you make it” to get a girl rather than “being yourself” that this is the worst advice anyone can give. If being yourself isn’t good enough too get a guy/girl to begin with than how the hell is the relationship going to have any meaning further down the road, the relationship that starts this way is destined for failure to begin with. You also have to believe that no one is too good for you to begin with. That’s why I believe even when first meeting someone it needs to be EQUAL effort on both the girl and guy. NEVER show anyone you are bummed out about being alone.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Do not fret Dear wundayatta, just learn to be happy with yourself. And if you need a glimmer of hope, here is a link to my story. It is a bit outdated….must catch up. Just start at the bottom with the #1 post.

meagan's avatar

I’m only 21. I’ve experienced too much too early to fall into the shit of there being one person out there for me.
I’ve accepted the fact that I’ll be alone.

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