Is It Too Late?

I am nearly 67 years old (not quite decrepit) and have been widowed for exactly 3 years. I enjoy my own company... but I don't want to be alone 24/7.

I have two grown children and three young grandchildren. But they have their own lives; I do not want to intrude when not invited.

I have joined a book club (none of the members seems to want to meet outside of club meetings) and I do a little volunteer work. I read, wander around the internet, and watch tv.

My husband and I were both introverts/loners; we were perfectly happy with each other (and our kids) for much of the time. My one "friend" lives 3,000 miles away. I am now incurring the results of being a loner. I have done some traveling... but that can be expensive. Local "senior" groups consist of people who are 20 years older than I am and are just sitting around "waiting." I have even looked into online dating... very scary.

I find myself crying a lot, especially on weekends when I know my kids might be free, but don't connect. How long does mourning go on? My late husband was an exceptional person.

I realize that this is a self-perpetuating situation, but I can't quite kick myself out of my ennui and bereavement. One of my kids says that my problem is that I just don't like anybody! Perhaps that's true?
seniordreamer seniordreamer
66-70
3 Responses Dec 16, 2012

Hi. I see that you posted this a year and a half ago. I hope you are feeling better now. I know what you mean about lonely. I was married from age 20-45 and have been alone for 5 years now. Im terrified of dating. I see men my age and they look like my grandad....I feel no chemistry at all....so I guess I will live out the rest of my days alone. Its sad really, as I was a good wife and I am a good person. I only have one son and Im scared Im ******* up his life forever because he still lives with me....probably out of pity. Hes handsome, incredibly smart and kind...and hes alone too. Im starting to think thats just how the world is now.

I read your story, and I read your comment to Jenni. You are only 67 years young! There are lots of men and women out there to share your life with. I am 55, white, smart, and a Texan. If you are anywhere near Texas, let me know! Anyway, dozens of people want to meet you. I am one of them.

Keep joining clubs, but let me tell you, a book club is populated with people who are quite introverted, like yourself! It's hard to get them to break out of their shells, especially when you need to break out of your own shell at the same time!

Travel is fun - with a friend or lover. Not much fun for people all alone.

Do you enjoy crafts, sewing, anything like that? Join those kinds of clubs, too.

Get a dog and walk it daily. We have dog parks here in Dallas area, and a dog is a great friend, as well as a great ice breaker. Everyone likes dogs, and the folks you meet at a dog park are nice. You never know what will come from such a meeting! Plus the exercise for you is good, too.

Join a wine tasting club! Now there is a group of people who are usually extroverts, and the wine loosens up bad attitudes. You can learn a lot about wine, meet some people who are fun, and who knows what will come from that? Intelligent conversation, travel, friendship.

Go to church, and help out.

Go be a volunteer at the local hospital.

Go read at the local elementary schools. The teachers and kids will adore you, and you WILL meet nice younger people to hang with - and all those folks have parents your age. Sly how that works, huh?

Anyway, get out of the house, get off the computer, and get your life started. I know you loved your husband, but are you doing him any honors by pining for him these three years later?

Tom

Thank you for your advice Tom! I might just look into a wine tasting club... and I'm considering quitting the book club because, in addition to not making "friends" there, I don't particularly like the books they choose to read! In 2-1/2 years, they haven't taken one of my suggestions ;) I have volunteered at the local hospital, in the pediatric unit. I just wasn't tough enough. I had no problems dealing with the kids (which was minimal). I got upset by the understaffing and lackadaisical attitude of the caregivers. Until this minute I was volunteering with wounded warriors at a large local army base. Alas, they are now closing down that program. I need to find something else to actually make myself feel good (I think I got more out of that than the soldiers did). I also considered that to be payback for the GI Bill sending my husband to MIT and for my army widow's pension.

I've looked into online dating... very scary. You're really putting yourself out there. I despise crafts, etc. I moved into my downsized condo with a dog and 3 cats... and brand new furnishings. For several reasons, I no longer have any of the critters. I made sure that they would be at good homes. After 30 years of dogs, cats, and bunnies, I no longer wanted black tumbleweeds all over my house and clawed upholstery. I used to live in "the woods." My dogs could actually walk themselves. I am just too sensitive to extremes of weather to walk a dog 3 times a day. I also don't want to be tied down with pets if I just want to pick up and go. BUT, I would LOVE dog/cat(s), if only to have something to talk to and cuddle. Boarding is expensive.

I am attempting to get more involved in community politics (HOA). I love living here, but it is a rather guarded, insular community.

I am nowhere near Texas. I am in Northern VA, the DC suburbs... lousy winters and summers. I stayed here because this is where my kids are. But I truly appreciate your invitation. (Funny story: the only one on an internet hookup site who actually "appealed" to me and wanted to get together, was 33 years old! I might try to check back with him ;) I find that men my own age do not even match up to my husband, who was 83 when he died!)

How about adopting a senior cat? One who is mellow and just wants to cuddle? I couldnt live without my buddy Jack, the siamese cat!

O.K.! Most of the things I have suggested you have done, and you got rid of the dog! :)

I have a son in the Marines stationed in DC and you are right - the summers and winters totally suck! But, spring and fall are nice.

If you are lonely for a "hookup" - and who is not - you might as well enjoy the younger guys if they appeal to you. The day and time where you had to be worried about the difference in age is past, and if you are emotionally healthy as well as physically and sexually healthy, then enjoy. Most women are not as comfortable with the age difference as you apparently are. And again, if you are interested in a trip to Texas - or meeting a nice guy the next time I head to DC to see my son - let me know!

In my opinion, a local HOA is just a bunch of busybodies making everyone else's lives difficult! I recognize that there are tasks to be done, but it doesn't have to be me doing it to my neighbor! Not sure you will make a lot of friends there! Some enemies, for sure, but not a lot of friends.

Add me as a friend! Would love to chat with you directly.

I feel for you and am so sorry for your loneliness. I am much younger than you but have always been a bit of a loner too, but am usually content. I have a few good friends thankfully, but sometimes see them rarely. I have always been attracted to people who think deeply about things and take little stock in the superficial and I find these people hard to come by. Personally I do a lot of volunteer work (human rights), and even if I'm not very close to most of the people I've meet through that, we have some of the same passions and beliefs and so it is comforting to be around them. Maybe you can think of what you want to do to help others or the world and get involved. I find that helping others makes me feel very happy, no matter how alone I may be. I also meditate daily which helps me feel peace, irrespective of external factors. I practice Falun Dafa (meditation/ qigong) which is always free and practiced world wide. www.falundafa.org
Best wishes to you and I hope that you can take a little comfort in that one person, though a stranger, is thinking of you and wishing you happiness.

Thank you Annabelle. My husband was very intelligent and a voracious reader. We were often content to read nearby each other. (I had to watch tv alone :))

My daughter says that he "spoiled" me for other men. He was also very attractive. We had one of those weddings where the groom is better looking than the bride... and he was 20 years older than me! Sometimes I wonder if I've had my quota of happiness.

It's nice to know that you're thinking of me. Thanks again.

He sounds wonderful. You must miss him. I hope that you have more happiness coming your way! Happy holidays! :)