At Least One of Us Is Happy
This testimonial was sent to me by Jane (not her real name), a sixty-four year old childfree woman who is struggling to find connection with people in her community. I appreciated her honest, straightforward writing. Thanks for your submission, Jane!
I’m 64, retired, childfree by choice, married to a man who is also CF by choice. Our marriage is a good one and thank goodness for that because he’s pretty much my only friend. You see, we live in a mostly rural, religious, conservative, kid-centric area which for an atheist, liberal, CF by choice, non-outdoorsy type such as myself is boring and lonely. And I never have been good at making friends anyway–lack of good female role models growing up among other reasons. Then to have to live in an area where I *really* don’t fit in? Like being in prison instead of those “golden retirement years” I always heard about.
Should I move closer to a metro area where I’d have at least a chance of finding others like me to possibly be friends with (or at least more stuff to do that I’d be interested in)? You bet I should but Hubby refuses to leave; he loves it here, hates any area remotely resembling a metro area, says he’ll have to be carried out of here “feet first.” And since I know he’d be miserable leaving here and I love him, here I stay. (At least one of us is happy.) And yes, as people are always advising me to, I’ve tried starting my own groups of things I’m interested in but no luck. Since the groups weren’t to do with kids, grandkids, religion, or knitting, no one was interested.
So if you’ve been hearing lately about the studies of loneliness among the elderly (mostly studies done by the UK, for some reason; guess we Americans are supposed to be the “rugged individualists” who never get lonely, not even in old age), you’ve just heard from a real live example. And my advice to any of you younger CF-by-choice gals who are living in an area similar to mine? Get out and get to somewhere better (if possible, of course) while you still have a chance because it only gets harder (both the leaving and the staying) as you get older unfortunately.
I want to hear your story! Please send your submission to nokidwoman (at) gmail (dot) com.
Photo Credit: Lutz Staacke via Flickr.