How do I get a life for myself?

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I'm not sure how to make a very long story short. I'm 50 and my mom's 73. Divorced, kids and I lived with my mother. We share expenses because she can't afford to live on her own and frankly it worked. However, my kids are now grown and on their own. I never dated on a regular basis when the kids were growing up because I didn't want men in an out of their lives. Now however I would like to have that company, but I now spend more time watching over my mother. And believe me the men out there don't want to hear that you live with your mother and I'm not a friend with bennifit type. I feel so guilty because I want a life of my own, or such to have someone special. What suggestions are there.

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I know how you feel! I am 49 and living with my folks as primary caregiver, trying to make a frugal living and deal with the overwhelming sadness and general fussy-ifcation that reigns here! A date? OMG, that would be bliss! But you are right, girlfriends may think we are doing this wonderful thing and shower praise, but men, in my experience, do not find someone in our position attractive. Our family originally thought I would be here 2 years and get them into a different situation, but that is not going to happen. I know that trapped feeling!

Blessings to you all!
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I am so glad you asked that question! :) And it was beautifully answered by those above me here. I too wonder...what's to become of me? I'm 56, and divorcing after 25 years. I tell myself, "Later, after Mom is gone maybe", I'll have the where-with-all to approach thinking of a partner again. I do miss the closeness of a relationship that is possible between 2 loving people, and do not relish being alone...I really appreciate all that Ann wrote. She is one wise lady. You've all opened my heart. :)
How does that saying go? "All that you need, to have all that you want, lies inside of you, right now. EVERYTHING." :)
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There is NOTHING wrong with wanting a life of your own. I'd check into church groups or care giving support groups too. If you don't want to leave mom home alone, see if your local social services has respite volunteers.

There are assisted living facilities for people on a limited income. You need to take advantage of this now before your mom is sick and really needs your time and attention.
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Take the chance now to involve yourself in more activities outside. The day will soon come when your mom is 83 and will definitely need you around if not all-day, then most of the day. I find this difficult for myself to do also, but it's the advice I'd give to myself -- if only I'd get myself out more.
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Are you asking about "getting a life" or dating? The reason I ask this is because you need to have a life before you can meet anyone who wants to share it. I know it is easy to feel blue or like your life is over when the kids leave & you care for a parent. These suggestions are not frivolous - they work for others, maybe you too.

Go for a walk. Find out what volunteer, or part-time paid positions are open that will let you socialize (Starbucks & Trader Joes have good cultures & extend benefits to part-timers, to mention a few of the many companies that don't discriminate on age & caregiver status). Find something you enjoy doing that stretches your brain and your body. You might even join a senior center, faith based org and also take your mom with you to places - many free or low cost things to do if you hunt.

Some men also care for family members and are looking for companionship as well. You would be surprised the number of men who are attracted to a woman who is self-assured enough to have fun on her own terms, and take her mom with her. Or as one man who asked me if I was single the other day when I was out with my mom said - - - Lady like you is a keeper. I was at an evening YMCA yoga class with my mom, who is in a chair but likes the breathing exercises and mediation.

Be a keeper - live like it is your last day, laugh when things are funny, dance by yourself and with a little joy in your life, you will begin attracting what you wish for.

Although it is not easy, it will keep you sane, grounded, and you mom in a better mood too.
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