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I'm on a roll with the posts today.

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Tiny,
It’s hard to accept that there is no one person who can make you happy. As women we are seldom told this growing up. More like “Find the right man and life will be great, secure,exciting, and romantic!”
You can tell that that is bull. The letters here give you a more realistic picture.
You are taking back your life, seeing more people, beginning to identify who you are and what you want. When you get your own happiness, contentment, and joy, you will be drawn to others like you, and choosing friends and companions from your place of happiness, rather than neediness.
I did not know this at your age. I also never guessed I could have a fulfilling, happy life as a single person for almost 30 years.
I know now that friendships with other women can be supportive and loving. There is such strength in women for one another.
So keep moving on, do things you want to do, be patient with life, reach out to other women, enjoy the moment. It may end up with you finding a mate,
But if not, you won’ t be sad and lonely because you will know that life can be good because you will have been living it.
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Hey Tiny, I'm also in my early 40s and just wrapping up with 6.5 years of very intense, life takeover, caregiving to grandmother and then father. I wasn't able to date during the caregiving years. I tried. But... it is a weird place from which to come to a relationship, where all of your time and energy is already being allocated to someone else -- your charge/dad.

It's not impossible, though, to find a male friend for some company. Have you tried online dating? (For all I know, that's how you met Mr. Miserable.) It's hit and miss, but it did/does give me opportunity to meet someone if I want to.

It's funny, now that I'm out of caregiving and more focused on rebuilding my own life, now I'm not very interested in dating! Go figure. I definitely WAS thinking about that aspect of life during caregiving, but now, not so much.

I agree that caregiving can be a very lonely experience, and I remember how I would get a crush on every male doctor or home repairman that came within my lonely radius... simply because I didn't have good adult companionship. I've been driving ride share service for a month now and I have all the adult conversation I care for! It's been really interesting to see how I feel after this prolonged period of not interacting with many people, to where now I'm interacting with a dozen people or more during the day/eve. I feel a sense of basic confidence coming back into me, a better sense of balance and understanding... of myself. There is no more skewed take on myself, my life, my abilities due to the isolation and exhaustion of caregiving.

So when you relate things that sound like you are feeling forlorn... I attribute that to caregiving life.  It made me feel that way, too.

If you can't relieve yourself of your duties to your dad (I don't know your entire situation, but I'll assume that caregiving will go on for a bit for you), then you must take care of yourself better, take care of your emotions better. How to do this? One of the few things that helped me during depression/caregiving was watching and listening to any positive motivational talks on YouTube. They're a bit sappy but it does help. And... it helped me to realize that IF I wanted a relationship with a man, then I had to put the effort in to accomplish that.

I'm not going to say whether you should or shouldn't want a boyfriend. You do, and you deserve a nice one, so set about to meet some men... via online is probably best way... and don't let one or two baddies deter your path. Most of us kiss the frogs before we get to the prince. Don't let some jerk discourage you, if you want a relationship, you can find one. I get it that you don't feel especially pretty these days, but I do think that someone out there would see the value in your being dedicated to your dad.

Keep trying -- that's what I'm saying. :-) Keep trying! What do you have to lose? And don't you worry about feeling lonely and unattractive, because that's just caregiving life affecting your sense of self confidence.  You're still a wonderful person in there, with a lot to offer to someone else.  Keep looking for a nice man to spend some time with if that's what you want. There are more single men in their 40s in 2017 than ever before. I'm sure quite a few of them would love to meet you. Put your best foot forward, put on some lipstick, smile, go on some dates. :-) And don't tolerate anyone who is anything but supportive and kind.
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((((((Tiny)))))) You have tons of life ahead of you. I had more guys interested in me in my 70s than ever before. Not saying they were all good catches, but some of it was fun. Sneak a little time in for yourself, buy a new lipstick or some earrings. Have that wine in front of the fire. Don't ever shut the door on having a relationship if that is what you want. It's never too late!!!! ❤
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Tinyblu, out the blue [pun intended] go onto Classmates.com and roam around your old high school classmate list. Was there anyone you thought was really cute, or you had dated while in high school. Check to see what he is doing. Classmates has it set up where you don't need to give out your email, you go through Classmates to communicate. You can break the ice by signing his guest book and see if he responds back.

I found it very interesting. A fellow whom I was engaged to right after high school but who got cold feet, dropped communications, and I had moved out of state... he found me decades later. We communicate every now and then, just catching up with time. You never know who you will find :)
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Tiny blu--
I am so sorry you are feeling low this time of year..or any other, for that matter.

You are doing a wonderful service for your father, whether he appreciates it or not. I just returned from a "session" with Mother, and it was heartbreaking, she's so needy and tired and depressing to be around. Today she said she just wanted to die. Well, we all kind of hope she does pretty soon, she's miserable and there are SO MANY things wrong with her...but for some reason, she just keeps on going.

I can say this about being "alone" --although I AM married, 99% of the time, I may as well be single. My hubby has long since lost interest in me or anything about me. He won't remember to get me a Christmas gift, he will wake up on Christmas morning and the kids & g-kids will all come over and MIRACLE OF MIRACLES..there will be a full Christmas day planned, wrapped and ready to go! He doesn't even acknowledge that I DO all this, I think he believes in Santa--so sometimes, well, always, being married isn't a solution to anything unless your problem is that you WANT desperately to be married. I wouldn't leave my hubby for anything, but wow, I wish he acknowledged my existence once in a while. Sometimes we are better off alone---DH travels A LOT and I do not miss him when he's gone. Any romantic notions I had about marriage being the end all-be all were quashed in the first year of marriage--and we're going on 42 years now.

You are still so young--your life is still a lot of what-ifs and possibilities. I hope you can enter the new year with resolve to make your situation better, however that is possible. Therapy opened my eyes and made me realize that I had to love myself before anyone else's love could be felt. I have made peace with a friendship-only marriage. I work hard to maintain friendships and get out and do things. (My hubby was never my soul-mate. I am not sure that even exists.)

Love yourself. Care for yourself. Let yourself feel sad, if you need, but don't wallow in it.

And come back and vent all you like. That's why we're all here. We GET it.

(((Hugs)))
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((((((((Hugs)))))))))))
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Dear Tinyblu,

Thinking of you. Sending you love and hugs.

Please don't ever let anyone tear you down. You are such a good person. You keep going when most people would want to give up. It is hard. And it is lonely. I hear you. I feel it too. We are the same age and my dad passed last year. The time really got away from me and I don't know where the last 20 years went. I really think katiekay said it best. There is so much more life ahead of us. I know its hard to see right now, but we will get there. Please know we are all here for you. XO
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There is nothing wrong not having a mate. In fact, for many, it can be rewarding.
Dateline NBC has been full of stories of couples killing for love, money or both. If you love yourself, you're not lonely.
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There is nothing wrong not having a mate. In fact, for many, it can be rewarding.
Dateline NBC has been full of stories of couples killing for love, money or both.
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How are things going now, Tinyblu?
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Forget the men, find some good women friends! I'm single, never married, now 67 and I'm very happy with my life. I regret I never had children, but I'm happy on my own. I have good girlfriends who kept me centered and involved through my 15 years of caregiving. A few of them have had similar caregiving experiences, so we could commiserate and be there for each other.

And just understand that this time of year is very tough on many of us, particularly singles who are childless. We're not the "happy American family" norm and it can be very isolating. So big {{{{hugs}}}} to you, Tinyblu, from another single.
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I will re write your epitaph for you:

'Here lies Tiny Blue caring, loving daughter who was there for her father till the end. Who endured some very hard times but through the hard times she learned some very valuable lessons ... she learned to love herself, set boundaries, and live in the moment.. she learned to endure the hard times. She was there for her father until he passed and used all the lessons she learned during this very difficult time to forge a wonderful, adventurous and meaningful life for herself."
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Ditto what Erin said - I'm so relieved you saw the back of HIM!

And by the way, nothing is lonelier than being in the wrong relationship. Just as many dreams in the fire, just as much flavour in the wine when you're enjoying them peacefully solo.

Not to say that having an agreeable companion around the place doesn't also have its advantages, of course! But there are still blessings to count if you're short of one. Hugs to you x
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Erinm60 is so right. I, too, and 56, and have a lot of happiness in my life. One of which is a lovely, several years long flirtation with a FB friend. We've never met, and have no intention of meeting, IRL--so he could be anyone, of course. But it is very cheering. Perhaps you could find something like that IN THE MEANTIME, not for the of your life, but until things change for you.
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40 is young Tinyblu. I’m almost 57. The time flew. This will pass. The sociopath who told you how and to kill yourself is evil. Be very happy that relationship is over. Keep caring about your appearance. It does matter how you feel about yourself. You’re only 40! You have many hopefully great years ahead of you. Find you time. Date nights for yourself. Sounds like you had a very healthy self esteem. Don’t lose it. You are still you.
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It sounds very lonely and sad right now...hard to care for you Dad and work so hard; and to have been treated so horribly by two men. I imagine the idea of trying to take time for yourself is just a bad joke. I wish I had a helpful answer, because you sound as if you are going minute by minute.
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The closer the holiday gets, the worse I feel. I'm LONELY.

... and I don't have it as hard as some who have their loved ones at home. I HAVE "help" because Dad is in UN-Assisted Living, but I work two jobs to cover what his VA benefits do not. So, when I'm not working, I'm spending time with Dad or trying to catch up on the little things in life like ... sleeping.

I decided that it wasn't even worth it to try dating because it's just too hard. I had a BF when I started caregiving and it took its toll on the relationship. I remained single for a year then met what I thought was a great guy who was willing to help out with Dad. He turned out to be a manipulative jerk who ended the relationship by telling me what a horrible job I was doing caring for Dad and how no one would ever want me. He then told me to go kill myself and suggested ways to do it.

Needless to say, after that, I just shriveled up and gave up. I don't think it's fair to bring someone else into my burden, but it gets lonely.

I'm only 40 and I have been told on more than one occasion that I'm attractive. I used to be active and vibrant. I would even have date nights to myself. Now it all seems exhausting to even think of getting dolled up to go anywhere (not that I can afford to buy the clothes anyway).

I have resolved that I will probably not get married and though women are having kids in their 40's, I won't be one of them. I don't want to be an older parent and put kids through what I'm going through.

I feel misunderstood and sad, and would love to have someone to cuddle with in front of a fire with a glass of wine. I feel stuck and won't be free until Dad leaves this world, and not knowing how long that will be scares me.

Will my epitaph read... Here lies Tinyblu... Netflix binging, caregiving spinster while Dad's lists his adventures? I've given up my life to watch Dad endure a long, painful end. It's not fair.

Sorry about the gloom and doom today. I'm really in a horrible mood.
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