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First Time Living Alone

I am in my mid 50s and finalizing a divorce (next week).  It was a very emotionally devastating event for me, even though at this time I realize that I can't go back.  (still think about it, though).  So, here I am in my very nice apartment, the very first time I have ever lived alone.  I had roomates in college, got married to my first husband before we graduated, and moved in with my soon to be ex husband before the first divorce was finalized.  Along the way had two lovely children who are now grown.

So, how do you live alone?  I was very isolated while married to my soon to be ex husband, we really had no friends (another story).  So, no friends.  My children and sister live close by but they are busy and I do not want to be clingy.  So, I sit alone in my apartment alone.  I could go out, but where?  What are my interests?  I have spend my whole life being either a daughter, mother, or wife and while I am still a mother, my kids are grown.  How do you bread out of this?  How do you find out what you are interested in? 

LovelyLibrarian LovelyLibrarian 51-55, F 69 Responses Apr 30, 2010

Your Response


I have never lived alone. It terrifies me. I feel lonely now and I have my second husband who lives with me. I miss my kids sometimes and worry one day I will be alone

This is me too. Everyday I struggle with loneliness. I have 2 sisters within 3 miles and like you I dont want to be there so limit my visits once a week. Although I go Down to my local pub one night a week on a quiz night I am very conscious of the fact I do not want to be the Guy who's spend half his life drunk and the other at Work. When I'm not working I feel so low and struggle to figure how to pass my time. SO when you find the answers please share.

I've just moved into my own house. I'm soon to be 24. 75% of the time I really like it but then 25% of the time I feel overwhelmed with loneliness. Like, there's no one out there that would rather be here with me right now rather than what they are doing. I hope I can combat this

This is soo sad, I dont think you should have to worry about being clingy, your children should know better and be there for you in your time of need. Reach out to them so they know how your feeling.

OMGoodness ! you sound like me. I've been divorced this May 2014 for 6 years and I live an isolated life as well.

Make it your mission to figure out why you aren't comfortable alone and what part of the unhappiness that led to divorce was something you may have had control over. Otherwise, you will go on being excessively lonely, and as a result may get into yet another relationship or marriage that ends up too much like the others. Without a concerted effort to learn and change, we all tend to make the same mistakes over and over again. Best of luck!

You do things you enjoy like hobbies, you also use those hobbies to socialize with others...... You take care of the mind and the body with simple things like music, walks, and remember to breathe.. Hugs for you

It's really important, they say, for your health not to isolate yourself. I know. I worry about that myself. I myself never married but my siblings did and now with both parents gone (my father died in 1989 my mother this year) I am truly alone in this house at the age of 64. When I go to work that is part of my social life. I do not plan to retire any time soon. I talk on the phone. I take walks. I write letters, send emails, read, do my artwork, garden. People have suggested I get a pet but I'm a little nervous around animals. Anyway, I take my social life wherever I can find it, even talking to people on the bus. If you isolate yourself it could affect your overall not just emotional but physical health. There is a higher risk of heart disease and other conditions. Even, according to the latest study, if you're happy being alone! I want to keep my health. In any case, don't cut yourself off from people. If you want to you can join groups, but you don't have to. And just plunge right in and find an activity you might like. I discovered I like doing miniatures.

Hi, i know how you feel and its not easy but you learn to live alone and now its been 12 years and i do`nt know how to get out of this, i do everything for me today and i do`nt or can`nt shear anymore. I have 3 grown up kids and only on and her family live close to me, my own brothers and sisters live in another country and over the years we have moved further apart.I do`nt like the way i live today but i do`nt know how to change things.!!!!!

Hope things are getting easier for you. I myself have always seemed to have been alone, compared to other people. Even with family and friends it never seemed to be the same kind of connection as some might say they should have been. Perhaps it's just perception. Well best of life to you.

Being alone. It's when we are forced to confront reality and the truth. The truth of our own impending death. The truth that we don't know our purpose in life and neither does anyone else. The truth that life is absurd anyway you slice it.

Hello, being alone is something that starts out as you describe. I was married and divorced like so many people and it was a shock for for some time, but like anything, it gets better. You are not alone and I can tell you that you need to go out and sing Karaoke. The great thing about this is that you will meet people from all backgrounds that just want to have fun and this is what you'll be surprised. What will you sing?

Welcome to the world of being alone.

I am a good guy. I was married for 14 wonderful years and then found out that my wife was cheating on me. This has rattled my foundations in every sense. I am now divorced and feel disposed of.
I have my kids every 2nd week which is great and now have a nice girlfriend that i see only once a week due to distance but I still feel so Lonely.
I am feel lucky as I can count my blessings but I just feel pretty sad.
I feel alone because I just don't feel loved the way I want to feel loved. I hope that I find that special person who will love me. I hope you find that special person.
Love one another.

I'm there, too. I suggest that it can be helpful sometimes to think in terms of "dating" yourself. Take yourself out to a movie, dinner, theater, concert, mud-wrestling competition (or... not...), or whatever. Go someplace you might not typically go on your own, and treat it as a chance to see what your date (you) thinks of it. Learn about yourself as you would learn about someone else - gradually, in a relaxed, non-judgemental, "no pressure" sort of way. Laugh off the less-than-spectacular experiences, enjoy the good ones, and learn more about this special person through all of them.

It is a little difficult being alone after having a partner for so long. My ex started going to gym classes and sosialize with many friends there.

i find that very interesting... i imagine many guys have 'librarian' fantasies, so it's very hard to imagine a 'lovely librarian' ever having to be alone or lonely...<br />
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when i was in college, i recall a very lovely looking librarian. i had a kind of crush on her, a nice looking lady in her 50s. always imagined her to be married w/ kids. it would suck to learn that she wasn't married w/ kids, or was ever lonely.<br />
<br />
anyhow... any lonely women that would like to chat, feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

Join a bridge club. It's a fun game, and you will get to play with several people from the bridge club....then there are will meet a lot of people, especially people your age.

Feel sorry for your situation, but things could be worse if you would jump into a bad situation to keep from being lonely. We used to refer to it as out of the frying pan into the fire. I think most of us want companionship and intimacy a bonus, but with 50% of marriages not working, the percentage for relationships must be much higher. Please take your time.

I am also a lonely librarian who is living alone for the first time in my life after my elderly mother passed away a few months ago. I was her caregiver for a long time and gave up my life to care for her. I don't want to be on the go constantly as I have two lonely cats and love my home. I don't like waking up alone and feeling so lost, like an orphan in my 50's. Rest of family either have already passed or don't live nearby. I need some answers too.

Hi,<br />
I am 53 and soon to be separated. My husband and I have had problems in our relationship for years. Moreover, I have been fighting cancer and depression for the last 4-5 years. In the meantime, my husband accumulated debts and it got to that point where I discovered we are losing our house. I am not working anymore. I am disabled, half deaf and still coping with the last surgery- Whipple- which is very hard. I certainly didnt want our life to go on as it was: financial irresponsibility, lack of communication and huge fights. All that in addition to my sudden illnesses and depression. I used to be a successful teacher, excellent student, had my BA and MA with honors, etc. I had a life full. Now I can no longer work, can hardly walk or hear. I cant find what to do with my life anymore and am devastated that my husband just wants a separation without even trying therapy. (We once tried it but he stopped believing in it so we did nothing about our relationship despite my constant plights).<br />
I feel sad and scared. He is my 2nd husband. We have been married for 23 years. I was happy to divorce my first husband whom I married at 19. It was a bad marriage.Really bad.<br />
What is sad is that my husband and I still have some love for each other. He says we will always be friends and he takes me to every dr appointment, hospital checkup etc. <br />
I feel as if he does not want to fight for our relationship, for our marriage. He says there's no way he sees it can get better so we just have to separate. We first have to sell the house, return debts and with what remains, find a suitable place for me (I'm handicapped).<br />
It feels as if I am a failure, as if nothing awaits for me, there is no future for a 53 year old invalid like me......I know it sounds depressing, but thats how I feel.

I am in the same situation and have done all of the above and yet still feel alone, especially when I wake up in the middle of the night. My parents are divorced and still alive and I realize how selfish my mother was and now feel the pain of her giving everything to ONLY my brother. I think that pain is worse than being alone. I have looks, the dog, no mortgage, 2 of my 3 kids love me, the first totally turned his back on everyone once he got married and I wonder if what we call loneliness is just created by spending too much time reflecting time on issues out of our hands...<br />
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I do not have a solution, but "feel" for all the people who have written in and just want to add that music helps, so does travel, always planning for the next adventure and entertaining people who are also alone. <br />
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I may just pick up, quit my profession, move to France ())which I love) and re invent my life. In our country, age is not considered sexy and that is part of the problem. <br />
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A walking city such as Paris with so many arts and visitors is so uplifting. In Paris, 50% of the people choose to be single but the government encourages people to share space to avoid loneliness and to save money. Many advertise a room on a website called Air bnb and I feel it just makes more sense. Here we work until we drop and just know that prayer is very comforting, pets are, life is not supposed to be perfect... so why set yourself up for feeling let down. <br />
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Look at a person in a wheelchair, a handicapped child or the mother of one and look into her eyes, then you will feel life is not bad and that smelling the roses is a gift you can and should enjoy. Love yourself and relax, live in the moment, plan for the next trip or holiday and just live the live you have been it can end without warning..<br />
<br />
.remember yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never be so take time to smell the roses and live in the moment. That IS life....refer to a poem called "The Dash" and you will feel differently. <br />
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Good Luck.

Really enjoyed your response. I was not feeling depressed and am not i this situation, but I your suggestions would help lift your spirits even if you felt good.

I would just like to say thankyou for your words, they were very thoughtful and uplifting

have you and ex tried retrovaille?

i am recently divorced also. can we hold each other for awhile?

OMG...I am a 51 year old woman.... i recently broke up with my ex husband of 26 years. Over tha years it had been on and off and abusive and not. Now we are completly done. I miss him so much and I often cry. I feel the emptiness and the lonliness is settling in. What am I suppose to do now? Can someone please give me some advice. By the way, he has moved on and in with a 66 year old woman. We have only been split up 2 months....

hey hun just go out and meet some people and learn some new things, you got nobody holding you back. please understand im not being unfeeling i just recently went through a divorce also but you cant live in a rut. it does hurt for awhile so find something to ease the pain and get on with life. there is still alot of happiness for you to experience, just go find it.

My biggest wish is to be able to live alone; to be able to explore on my own, eat what I want, go to school without grief that I'm not around enough, and to not have to have to please anyone. (Surprisingly, I am an extrovert!). Loosening the reins will be hard and excruciating. I have to wait, at least, until my son is grown...7-1/2 years. I'll be 58 by then.

I wish i could help you. My heart goes out to you. I just want to hug and cuddle with you to make you feel secure again.

join an community group evening class like salsa, drama, book club. Just anything to get you out the house and meeting new people it will also help you find who you are as a person. Just dont keep yourself isolated