Women in their mid thirties or above who never married?

(30 posts)(21 voices)
  1. I know a ton of women in the 35+ age range who never married. For instance, at least half of my good friends from HS, I know for a fact they are still single. And they don't even seem to be dating anyone. I know some of them may be deliberately choosing this, they just don't want to marry, but what about the ones who aren't? The clock is running out of time for them to have genetic children. I have to wonder how they feel about this--is it like the despair many of us went through when going through IF? Is it hard for them to be around married women with kids? I am never sure how to handle it, since I don't want to be intrusive and ask them about it, or make insensitive comments. You don't come right out and say "So, why aren't you dating? Do you want kids? Do you want to get married?" Hard subject.
    One of my best friends from HS is living nearby now and wrote that she'd love to get together, then no follow through. She has never said that she never wants to get married or have kids so I am assuming she just isn't finding anyone. So is it really uncomfortable for her to be around me and see my kids?

  2. Lol Rachel, the first three topics I see on P.O.T. this a.m. tell me what's on your mind. I do think for many women not being married after 35 is very hard esp. if they want children. My bff is 38 and not married. It made her sad for a few years but now she's just accepted it and embraces it, trips to Europe at the last minute etc... For her, she's just not met the right person yet. She has no trouble dating but has not had the connection she's looking for. I'm sure the reasons why and feelings about not being married vary from woman to woman.

    Kris

  3. Lol Rachel, the first three topics I see on P.O.T. this a.m. tell me what's on your mind.

    Ha, well no one is really responding to this part of my question on the other question, just names on facebook, so I'm posting it over. This has been bothering me for a long time because I sometimes feel like my old single friends avoid me.

  4. I think some people who are single just have different interests than those of us with families. We do spend most of our time with couples who have kids with similar ages.

    Kris

  5. Rachel,

    Since that was one of your best friends who didn't follow through, can you contact her again and try to go out with her without your kids? Then you could feel out the situation and find out if she finds it hard to be around families w kids. She may just be busy and be happy that you reconnect with her.

    I didn't get married until I was 39. I did not find it difficult before that (or after I got married) to be around families and kids. That only started getting hard for me when I started doing IVF, and esp after my loss.

    fabio

  6. I also got married at 39 and it didn't bother me to get together with friends with family. Maybe on the rare occasion, it got me thinking about not having a family and I may have gotten a little sad. But, not sad enough to avoid my friends. I also don't get bothered by friends that are fertile and were able to have more than one child! Again, once in a while I get sad that DD won't have a sibling, but it doesn't take over my life.

    I also didn't date that much either. I was a successfull business women & traveled with my work alot. I wasn't avoiding marrige, just hadn't fell in love. I remember one of my business trips to Europe, I was on the plane with someone I worked with and he asked me if I had any regrets in life (he was a super nice, married guy, and we use to have alot of deep conversations, lol). At that time, I was 37, and my only regret was not having children (funny, I did not regret being single!).

    I think these feelings definately differ from person to person!

    -Pat

  7. I am married but I did not meet my DH until I was 40. This is my first marriage and my DH's second.

    Dating can be very tiresome! It can be difficult to meet someone especially if your schedule is busy and you stay in the same routine. There are good men out there but it isn't easy to find one at the right time when you are both on the same page for future desires. A lot of women in this age group meet guys that already have children and are divorced so many of the men have sworn off marriage or are done having children. The guys at this age that are still single and never married are usually of questionable worthiness.

    I always assumed that it would all just fall into place and happen for me. The DH, children... When I was 39 I suddenly realized that it was not going to happen unless I made it happen. I did date at that time but it has been a while since a serious relationship. I saw enough guys marrying women with small children to realize that I could find a guy later but if I was going to have a baby it had to be right away. So, I found a donor, and got pregnant. I miscarried and it turned out to be a molar pregnancy. I was not allowed to ttc again for almost a year. It was during that break that I met my DH. For the first time in my life I was really upfront and honest with a guy. I told him that I was going to ttc again as soon as I was released medically and while I was not asking him to help me get pregnant I thought that he should know my plan in case he wanted to run. He did not run, when I was released we tried together, married and eventually succeeded.

    I think it depends on the woman and how strong that desire is in her for children. I was so afraid that I might never be a Mom. I felt like I would have no idea what my purpose was if I was not a mother. I had been waiting for it to just happen to me instead of making it happen. I am grateful that I woke up just in time to take charge of my life. I am also grateful for modern science and the options available to become a Mom.

    A lot of women just do not want to do it without a partner. I can totally respect that too. It is a lot to think about at an AMA.

    Not sure if that answered your question at all!

    From a previous thread here I think that a great place to meet a guy is on public transportation. A flight, a train, I just wouldn't look on a Greyhound Bus!

  8. This is something I think about often because it concerns my sisters and is just one of my pet peeves. My younger sister is very beautiful, tall, intelligent with a very good job and her own house. It really distresses me that she hasn't married yet and has not dated for a number of years. Now, if she didn't want to marry or date I wouldn't care but she has told me how it has bothered her in the past. I do know that she made a conscious effort not to date for a time after she broke up with her last boyfriend who she said was abusive. Then she became an evangelical christian and wouldn't date a man who didn't go to church regularly. I did tell her that she was severly limiting her chances of dating someone and she agreed but wouldn't change her mind.
    Two of my older sisters never married(no kids either) even though they wanted to and have told me they have made their peace with it but it was very hard. I don't know but it really bothers me when I see or hear about people(ok I'll be honest mainly men) who aren't that good looking or smart or nice who have had many relationships and kids. I know my husband will tell me about the guys he works with who are divorced with kids and they never seem to go long at all without a new wife or girlfriend. I know this isn't fair and speaks to my own insecurities but men sure seem to have it easy when it comes to sex and relationships.
    I'm very glad to read that there are women on this board who have found love over 35.

  9. I just don't think there's a way to generalize about how someone in this situation feels - it really depends on the particular woman. I'm single, 43 and a mom, and when I hit 39, after many years of trying and hoping to find a man to spend my life with, realized I had to just move forward and have a kid on my own or else risk not having a kid (and then, grappling with infertility nightmares was like a double blow - bad enough that I had to do this on my own, and then IF?!). Many of my friends are other single moms who made the same decision. But I also have single friends 35+ who have decided that they prefer to focus on finding a partner rather than having a child on their own (unfortunately many of them seem to think they'll still be able to have kids easily at 42, 43, etc.). And I have single mom friends who are deciding not to try for a 2nd child b/c they feel like that will guarantee they never find a partner.

    And what every woman is bothered by depends on her particular issues around these subjects - for me, it's *much* harder to be around smug fertiles than it is to be around married/partnered people, although that kind of bums me out too. Pre-DD, I think it bummed me out more to be single than it does now - or maybe it's just that it bummed me out in a different way, b/c it was so tied to having a child. Now, although it saddens me that I don't have another adult to keep me company, share things that my DD is doing, do things with on the weekend, help me out, etc., thoughts about being single, and the quest to find someone, occupy way less of my brain space.

    That being said, I do think dating over 35 can be tough and most of the single women I know, while technically okay about being alone (in the sense that clearly they're not going to lay down and die from it), would rather be partnered, and if they do want to have a child and not do so on their own, it may be hard for them - but I don't think that means they are necessarily bothered by hanging out w/coupled people.

    I do also think that when you are childless, it can be kind of boring/frustrating to try to hang around with people with kids (single or coupled) - I can see it now, that I'm harder to schedule things with, that my conversations in person or on the phone are disjointed and frequently interrupted, and that much of what I talk about and am concerned about in my life relates to my DD, and that's just not all that interesting to people without kids. I know when I was childless, I just didn't get it.

  10. I know a ton of women in the 35+ age range who never married. For instance, at least half of my good friends from HS, I know for a fact they are still single. And they don't even seem to be dating anyone. I know some of them may be deliberately choosing this, they just don't want to marry, but what about the ones who aren't? The clock is running out of time for them to have genetic children. Oh, where to start! I have a lot of baggage in my past, including 1 very brief marriage when I was younger- but unlike most people, the thought of having children never entered my mind until I met DH at around 36. Since I had no desire for children, I didn't feel the need to settle, and didn't hear the clock ticking until then. I was very happy and care free.

    Quote:
    I have to wonder how they feel about this--is it like the despair many of us went through when going through IF? Is it hard for them to be around married women with kids?
    No, and No.
    Quote:
    I am never sure how to handle it, since I don't want to be intrusive and ask them about it, or make insensitive comments.
    There is nothing to handle. It's their choice (most of the time).
    Quote:
    You don't come right out and say "So, why aren't you dating? Do you want kids? Do you want to get married?" Hard subject.
    The only person that ever asked me that was a guy that I was seeing. I assumed he asked me that because he wanted to know if the relationship was going anywhere, so I thought he had the right to an answer. But you think asking the question is hard-- try answering it to a guy your dating! The real answer was "I haven't met Mr Right yet, and I'm not sure there is just one", but that would have been insulting, and then he would have dumped me, which I didn't want, because I enjoyed his company. He just wasn't the guy for me long term.
    Quote:
    One of my best friends from HS is living nearby now and wrote that she'd love to get together, then no follow through. She has never said that she never wants to get married or have kids so I am assuming she just isn't finding anyone. So is it really uncomfortable for her to be around me and see my kids?
    NO! I never, ever found it uncomfortable one bit! I was happy with my life the way it was. I was busy with my career, traveled a lot, had a ton of friends. If I can be honest here, and I will come off sounding like a creep for saying this, but I thought I had it better than they did, even. I felt that more than 1 or 2 had 'settled' - for what, I'll never know. It's not like if you want to have a child you need a spouse anymore.
    The people I felt the very worst for where the husbands of those women who 'settled'. What a horrible thing to do to another human being.

    You know how they used to say that love would come when you weren't looking? I'm living proof of that. If DH hadn't come along, I'd probably still be single, and probably still happy, but not as happy as I m now with him in my life!
    Maybe I just didn't know what I was missing- because this Motherhood stuff is the BOMB!

  11. when I hit 39, after many years of trying and hoping to find a man to spend my life with, realized I had to just move forward and have a kid on my own or else risk not having a kid .

    Kuddos to you, you are so smart for going for it. Because of all these celebrities having babies in their 40s (many using DE/Dembryo, I am sure), women think that they will be fertile for forever.

  12. Quote:
    There is nothing to handle. It's their choice (most of the time).

    that's not what I see. I have 3 very good friends (1 bff from college, 1 bff +1 good friend from grad school) who are 37-38 and not married, not by choice. Actually 1 bff just got engaged, so she's in a diff boat now, but the other 2 have had a very hard time meeting/dating. They all 3 were in serious relationships in their early-mid 30s where the guy walked--devastating. And I agree, men seem to have their pick while women much less so. All 3 have PhDs so that adds to the baggage. I do know that many of my PhD friends who ended up single post-graduation turned to internet dating, which means that meeting men in the first place is v tough.

  13. Not everyone follows the same path in life. I'm 44, never married, and have a pair of 3 year olds. We're a happy little family.

    For me, I've just never met Mr. Right and there are probably a thousand reasons for that. I'm not very outgoing (just look at my number of posts), I'm an engineer - a field full of "traditional" type men who have been married forever, I can be very rigid, yada yada. That said, I love who I am, I love my children, and I'm still hopeful that someone resembling George Clooney will show up on my doorstep, but until then, I'll keep on living my life.

    I'm not uncomfortable around families, particularly ones I know well. I will say I was a little self-concious at pre-school meet and greets when I was the only single parent around, but I'm hoping I'll get over that.

  14. Good question Rachel

    I am meeting 2 friends from college this weekend. One got married at 40 and is now pg with no 1 at 41.
    The other is still single at 42.

    There were definitely definitely issues around them both avoiding smug marrieds for years.
    One of them I posted about her outrageous behaviour at a wedding last year (booking a house with 2 couple friends and then telling us that one of the couples had to share a single bed cos she had met a guy grrrrrrrrrrrrr)

    The newly married one mooted that all 5 of us go out for dinner, I responded that that won't sit well with single friend, she would prefer if just the girls went out...newly married one said *** her, she'll have to deal with it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Some of my dearest friends are single women over 40 who have always wanted to marry and have children, and yes, it is painful for them. One has given herself permission never to attend baby showers because they hurt too badly. All of them have spoken of how hard it is to have the longing for marriage and children. None of them choose not to date. The right opportunities have not come along.

    Ironically, some of these friends were the most compassionate to me and my husband when we were going through IF and multiple losses. They suffer from involunary childlessness and they get it. I try to be as sensitive to them and the losses they are dealing with. I keep hoping the right men will come along for them and that they will get a chance to be mothers. They would be wonderful moms.

  16. I have a gorgeous, smart, funny, nice rich friend that has never married (41 yo). She told me that she was feeling sad that she may never have children. I told her to harvest her eggs...I am not sure if she did or not.

    I have another friend getting a divorce at 41 with no kids. She was always ambivalent about kids but seems to be freaking out a bit about losing that option. She loves my daughter and I can see her adopting, but who knows.

    I do feel for them, because as I was always beeyotching about IF, I also had a great hubby beside me...and we were always a "family" even before DD.

  17. I have a friend who is 35 and is not married and until recently was not dating (more on that in a bit). She wants to date, get married and have kids so bad she can taste it. Problem is she has does nothing about it. I mean she doesn't put herself in any situations to meet people. She relies on friends to set up her up. Not a bad strategy, just that all of us are married and our friends are married too. So no, she didn't avoid married couples or families. She actually surrounded herself with them, probably too much. I think she felt the opposite of what your asking. Meaning she didn't have a boyfriend/spouse or children so she chose to be around all people with families.
    Well... a few months ago an opportunity happened to present itself and I kind of picked up on someone for her (it is a great story, very innocent on my part). They are really happy together and apparently he is 'the one'. But had I not been with her they never even would have spoken to each other. She fully admits that she just doesn't have it in her to meet new people men or women.

  18. I think the greatest gift any married or otherwise committed couple can give to a single 30-something woman is to help her find a mate. Or at least try and let her know you're trying. It's a huge compliment to a single woman.

  19. Some of my dearest friends are single women over 40 who have always wanted to marry and have children, and yes, it is painful for them. ... All of them have spoken of how hard it is to have the longing for marriage and children. None of them choose not to date. The right opportunities have not come along.
    I have about 6 male friends who are successful, fit, good looking, smart, funny- that have never married either. They are not happy about it, they would like to meet 'the one', too.
    Is it because it's too hard for us to date and have a career at the same time?
    I know I spent many years on my career, and once I got where I wanted to be, the hours were grueling. My day started at 5 a.m., when I woke up to get to work by 7:30; and I stayed until the work was done. Once in a while pulling all-nighters.
    I noticed some of the other workers were starting to pair off and date, and I couldn't blame them. We really didn't have enough time to go out and socialize all that much. The guys that I dated I met at airports and such going to and fro for business, or while doing my job- and I met DH by walking my dog!
    The years between college and 36 flew by. One day I woke up and realized I wasn't the youngest kid on the job anymore. And while I was working, about half of my friends were like me (single workaholics) and the other half were old friends who either hooked up with their spouses at college or soon after. I used to tease some of them about the reason they attended college was to get their MRS degree, because a lot of them never worked after college; but we all fall in love in college, right?

    I will admit that I might have been influenced by the celebrities having kids in their 40's. They NEVER said anything about DE. I knew nothing about that. And, I had been warned in my mid-twenties that it would be hard for me to conceive a child anyway, so I did have a few years to mourn that and put it in perspective.

    I think we live in very strange times. We put ourselves through college, we get jobs, go straight to work and before you know it, our generation waits an average of approx. 10 to 15 more years more than our parents did to marry/start a family.

    When you Ladies talk about the friends you have that are single and want to be in a relationship and have kids, I get the same amount of friends saying the same thing.
    How are we going to fix them up?
    How DO people usually meet these days? Is it by introduction by friends, the internet, or what?
    How did you guys meet your spouses?

  20. Not everyone follows the same path in life. I'm 44, never married, and have a pair of 3 year olds. We're a happy little family.For me, I've just never met Mr. Right and there are probably a thousand reasons for that. I'm not very outgoing (just look at my number of posts), I'm an engineer - a field full of "traditional" type men who have been married forever, I can be very rigid, yada yada. That said, I love who I am, I love my children, and I'm still hopeful that someone resembling George Clooney will show up on my doorstep, but until then, I'll keep on living my life.I'm not uncomfortable around families, particularly ones I know well. I will say I was a little self-concious at pre-school meet and greets when I was the only single parent around, but I'm hoping I'll get over that.
    WOW. You just described my IRL BFF! Right down to being an Engineer, a tiny bit shy (but you would have to know her really well before you knew that!). Very grounded, very focused. And she is a great Mom.
    She is very, very happy too. Same attitude- she likes men with beards, though. If Prince Charming knocks on her door, fine. If he doesn't, that's fine, too.
    I really admire her.

  21. How are we going to fix them up?How DO people usually meet these days? Is it by introduction by friends, the internet, or what?How did you guys meet your spouses?

    I met my spouse doing charity work.

    Being that I just helped my friend find 'the one' apparently. I can say that I did it by being a big mouth. I am married. What do I have to lose by talking to people. If I get rejected I go home to a husband and a son. I have taken the initiative to meet people and then eloquently sort of pass the conversation to my friend and the man I initiate the conversation with. (Yes, my husband is fully aware I do this. He has even been present). 'The one' guy was with a group of people we met skiing. We found out they were from the same town as us. I just started talking to them and found out what they did, who was single, married, kids etc. Kind of widdled down the options. There ended up being one single guy in the group. They invited us to meet them at the restaurant they were having dinner at and we exchanged numbers (I had the cell phone). We went for dinner only. Talked some more. The next day (we skiied with them) I had to be blunt because this guy was kind of shy and say 'remember I am the married one, X is the single one. you can talk/text/call her directly.' He did and the rest was history. There is more to the story which makes it great, but that is the jist of it. For my friend it was just being a voice for her and opening up the opportunity.
    I honestly have no idea how people meet these days? Friends and the internet would be my guess.

  22. HeHe.... you're a good friend, CB! And I'm guessing you've always been a terrible FLIRT, just like me. Being married doesn't stop me from flirting either. DH gets a huge kick out of it.

  23. My SIL is 35 and just got engaged. She did a lot of internet dating and this is how she met her fiance too. I am very happy for her.

    I met DH in college, so we were young (19 I think). I am so glad not to be in the dating scene.

    Jennifer

  24. I got married in my twenties and quickly got out of it. Bad match. The next time around I waited, worked on my career, had some bad love affairs, etc. Got married a second time at 34 -- so not late 30s, but no spring chicken. Much better for me going into a marriage a bit more mature....

    My sister got married for the first time at 41. They are not having kids. They decided they don't want them. She adores my kids and has no trouble being around them.

    I have a number of single friends approaching or over the 40 line. Most are sad that they haven't met the right person, but also pretty particular about what they want. I just treat them as I would anyone else -- although I give them free passes not to attend kids' birthday parties and such! One of my good friends likes to hang out for an hour or two with the kids, and that's it. They go to bed and we have girl time! Another one doesn't much want to see the kids -- she HATES the noise. It means I can't see her too often, but I get it.

    I guess I am of the school that if they are uncomfortable with it, they should say so, and if you think they are, you should ask them.

    Wanted to add that I have noticed a difference RE where you live. In DC, fairly normal to be in your late 30s and single. An hour away in smaller towns in Maryland, I was an oddball when I would visit, at 32 and unmarried, I was TOTALLY out of place.

  25. I guess I am of the school that if they are uncomfortable with it, they should say so, and if you think they are, you should ask them.

    I don't know if it's that simple though. When I was going through IF and thought I'd never have kids (it lasted about 5 years) I hated being around anyone with babies or little kids and I never would have brought up "Hey, I'm jealous of the fact that you have kids and can't stand being around them." It's just a really uncomfortable topic. No one wants to come out and say they are jealous or uncomfortable around someone else. I was so angry at the insensitivity of some people, couldn't believe they didn't "get it" at all and felt like they either shoved their kids in my face or they avoided the whole topic to the extent that it seemed like they didn't care at all. I don't want friends to feel like they have to "fake it" or that they have to spend time with me or my kids if they really don't want to, or like I don't care at all.

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