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5 Problems You Only Face While Living Alone (and How to Deal with Them)

Remember that roommate you had that walked around naked? Or the one who clipped his toenails in the living room while watching TV? There’s a reason you now live alone and love it. At some point you decided it was time, could afford it, and today you certainly don’t look back. But, while great in some respects, there are parts of living on your own that are, at the very least, different, and at the most, a pain in the ass. Here are five major ones, and strategies for dealing...

1. ECONOMIES OF SCALE
Problem: Generally, the more you buy at one time, the cheaper it becomes. While a family of six cruises through a pot of chili, that much food can get wasted in a household of one. It's also more expensive to buy smaller quantities of toilet paper and other household supplies.

Solution: The Kitchn has some great tips for cooking on your own. For everything else, consider teaming up with a friend, family member, or neighbor to split that 24-pack of toilet paper. You’ll save money and space in the process.

2. HEAVY OBJECTS
Problem: You get an itch to decorate first thing on Saturday morning and find yourself stymied by your grandmother’s huge, six ton armoire.

Solution: Don’t hurt yourself by trying to lift things yourself. First, break the piece down in any way to make it manageable: empty contents, remove drawers or legs. If it's still too big or heavy, round up a friend or next-door neighbor to help you out on the fly. Otherwise, save up all your little odd jobs and hire someone one Saturday afternoon to knock out everything out on your to-do list that requires help.

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/5-problems-you-only-face-while-living-alone-and-how-to-deal-with-the...

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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@nyadrn 

Only see (2) problems with solutions, how do you see others?

 

Have a Blessed Day

Marylin

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I'm an only child.  a 71 year old child.  And I guess I've seen my share of ups and downs in my young life.  Probably the only thing that really gets to me is wanting to reach out to 1 or 2 family members and they're not really available.  Sometimes I need reassurance or just to discuss something.  Right now I'm in the middle of a major life change while involves a decision to stop driving altogether or purchase a better vehicle to replace one on its last legs.  (Like me?)  So much to consider.  I'm a Vietnam vet and I guess you could say I've been around the block.  I've had 2 or 3 episodes of mental illness and had treatment in VA, where I'm an outpatient as I've been since l976.  I live alone, I love my independence.  So does my cat.  He's waiting for me to move out.  I tell him we're in it for the long haul.  He says, Oh s---!!

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@m907706g - Thank you for your service to our country; I know that Vietnam veterans don't get the same respect, as veterans of "popular wars"!

 

71 is young these days; I hope you're really not on your "last legs"!

 

I've been researching new cars, to replace my 2005 Toyota Camry. I like that the 2018 Camry hybrid has many safety features, that the 2017 didn't have .. since I don't have eyes in the back of my head, and no one else seems to watch where they're going any more!

 

I'm feeding 3 feral cats; 1 has already been spayed, and I'm hoping to get the other 2 trapped too. The spayed one has become very affectionate, and runs into the house as soon as I open the door. Today I was very frustrated because she didn't want to leave, and with an open concept design, we were running around in circles for a while!


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I've mentioned several times that I remained in NJ, when I moved to the shore, because I'm very close to my geographically closest relatives who live in the NW part of the state. But as I was crawling along in bumper-to-bumper traffic Wednesday evening, for their Thanksgiving dinner, and even w/o traffic on the 80 mile highway drive home in the dark, I thought that I was nearing my limit for the trip. I don't enjoy those long drives at night, and especially when there's road work, and lanes are temporarily changed & there are cones all over the place! A friend recently told me that her new car has "smart technology" where it uses the high beams at night, and only switches to low beams when there's a vehicle within 5 car lengths ahead of it. So on a wide divided highway, my car might not register with a vehicle coming towards me, and its high beams stay on .. another reason to hate driving at night & some of this technology .. which allows people to avoid using their own common sense, about blinding other drivers on the road!


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Last Tuesday, I had an accident at home; a very dumb & avoidable situation .. and it reminded me of how even a "small" injury can affect daily life. I was in the bathtub when a large "bug" flew in; without my glasses I wasn't sure what it was .. but I hate bugs! When I got out of the tub, it landed on the floor, and seizing the moment, I threw a towel on it, and quickly hit the towel with what I thought was the strong butt of my hand. Excrutiating pain .. I'd jammed my right thumb against the tile floor! I saw stars .. literally .. as my BP dropped instantly from the pain.

 

Long story short, the finger swelled, and the 1st joint from the tip of the finger to knuckle turned black & blue, over the next few days. Even the tiniest pressure on the pad of the finger sent pain up through it. I decided to hold off going to a doctor, thinking it might just be a soft tissue injury, rather than something broken/fractured.

 

Do you realize how limiting it is not to be able to bend a thumb, or put any pressure to hold something between your thumb & index finger .. and on your dominant hand?! By weekend, the swelling had gone down & most of the black & blue almost gone .. but I still can't put much pressure on the tip or pad of the thumb. I tried to peel a quartered orange the other night, but finally gave up ..


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@ASTRAEA wrote:

 

Do you realize how limiting it is not to be able to bend a thumb, or put any pressure to hold something between your thumb & index finger .. and on your dominant hand?! By weekend, the swelling had gone down & most of the black & blue almost gone .. but I still can't put much pressure on the tip or pad of the thumb. I tried to peel a quartered orange the other night, but finally gave up ..


>

@ASTRAEA  

On top of the list of my fears about living alone if I was not near family would be injury.  Not just the injury itself ( God willing it was not major)  but lifestyle limitations, even if temporary, that would prevent you from being alone.  Glad your injury was not as bad as it might have been but it is a good reminder of just how easily something could happen.  

 

Two different friends of mine have had recent issues with their mother's becoming unable to live alone.  The first had to find a permanent facilitiy quickly and the other is utilizing companion services and having her mother stay with her.

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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@nyadrn wrote:

@ASTRAEA wrote:

 

Do you realize how limiting it is not to be able to bend a thumb, or put any pressure to hold something between your thumb & index finger .. and on your dominant hand?! By weekend, the swelling had gone down & most of the black & blue almost gone .. but I still can't put much pressure on the tip or pad of the thumb. I tried to peel a quartered orange the other night, but finally gave up ..


>

@ASTRAEA  

On top of the list of my fears about living alone if I was not near family would be injury.  Not just the injury itself ( God willing it was not major)  but lifestyle limitations, even if temporary, that would prevent you from being alone.  Glad your injury was not as bad as it might have been but it is a good reminder of just how easily something could happen.  

 

Two different friends of mine have had recent issues with their mother's becoming unable to live alone.  The first had to find a permanent facilitiy quickly and the other is utilizing companion services and having her mother stay with her.


These problems seem to be the same even when not alone. The problem we all face, I think, is what to do when we're through with life but life's not through with us.

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@dl73698250 wrote:


These problems seem to be the same even when not alone. The problem we all face, I think, is what to do when we're through with life but life's not through with us.

 


You may not have meant your comment that way, but it comes across as dismissive of issues singles who live alone face, that others don't .. unless they're caregivers for someone who can't help them.


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@ASTRAEA wrote:

@dl73698250 wrote:


These problems seem to be the same even when not alone. The problem we all face, I think, is what to do when we're through with life but life's not through with us.

 


You may not have meant your comment that way, but it comes across as dismissive of issues singles who live alone face, that others don't .. unless they're caregivers for someone who can't help them.


I'm really glad you brought this up. I hope you allow me the opportunity to explain; it's important. A big problem with health care is that too many people think that the same problem requires the same solution. If more people would understand the difference between being "precise" and "pollitically correct", then a more precise "problem identification" would result in a more precise solution, and more workable for that person. The problem with the new President-Elect, is that he has a low tolerence for "Pollitical Correctness" and will more likely dismiss "Precision" along with it (and he's not the only one). So, if the person in need presents the problem in a way that's easy to identify as being different, then a different solution will more likely be easier to obtain/harder-to-avoid. For instance, if you presented the "singles problem" as being "no help available for the same problem" instead of giving the same problem that non-singles give, then the problem of "no help available" would be addressed instead of being dismissed as "why is there a problem; nobody else has that problem?" By presenting the problem like everybody else, you catagorize yourself as everybody else; therefore, the person you're talking to will more than likely do likewise, and dismiss your special needs. Get it? If you ask the wrong question, you're 100% gauranteed to get the wrong answer. And if you present the wrong problem, then someone who's not as smart as me won't catch the real problem.

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I think that singles feel their aloneness..  you are responsible for everything yourself unless of course you have a supportive family and or friends which thankfully many of us do.  However as we age, so do our friends and sometimes family is far away and we may reach a point where we have to answer that question of "If something happened and I was house bound or needed assistance, who could I count on?"

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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@nyadrn wrote:

I think that singles feel their aloneness..  you are responsible for everything yourself unless of course you have a supportive family and or friends which thankfully many of us do.  However as we age, so do our friends and sometimes family is far away and we may reach a point where we have to answer that question of "If something happened and I was house bound or needed assistance, who could I count on?"


This is a very important problem everybody faces. Even people who are not alone. Sometimes people "kick the can down the road" and put that problem onto their children. But then their children will face that same problem. Eventually an alternative answer will have to found. And this is also the problem that Social Security faces. Eventually the problem cannot be solved by "throwing more children" at it. I think I'd better stop here before I get into trouble.

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@dl73698250 - This is the "Singles Perspective" category of discussions. We singles DO feel that we experience things differently, and those of us who live alone don't have any "built in" housemate to assist us. It's getting a little annoying that you're a "guest in our house", and have repeatedly posted that we don't have unique needs being singles living alone.


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@ASTRAEA wrote:

@dl73698250 - This is the "Singles Perspective" category of discussions. We singles DO feel that we experience things differently, and those of us who live alone don't have any "built in" housemate to assist us. It's getting a little annoying that you're a "guest in our house", and have repeatedly posted that we don't have unique needs being singles living alone.


Sorry, but I, too, am single. I do understand. I just don't want to start a fight with those who aren't by saying that having children is not the answer. There needs to be a better way.

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@dl73698250 wrote:

@ASTRAEA wrote:

@dl73698250 - This is the "Singles Perspective" category of discussions. We singles DO feel that we experience things differently, and those of us who live alone don't have any "built in" housemate to assist us. It's getting a little annoying that you're a "guest in our house", and have repeatedly posted that we don't have unique needs being singles living alone.


Sorry, but I, too, am single. I do understand. I just don't want to start a fight with those who aren't by saying that having children is not the answer. There needs to be a better way.


Families are the traditional individual support..  so I don't feel that there is a "better" way.  There is no type of support that I nor my siblings would not and did not offer our parents.  But if I did not have a family still able to help me then I would have to join a support group with friends or find another network of support.

What type of better way do  you see?

 

What type of better way do you see?

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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@nyadrn wrote:

@dl73698250 wrote:

@ASTRAEA wrote:

@dl73698250 - This is the "Singles Perspective" category of discussions. We singles DO feel that we experience things differently, and those of us who live alone don't have any "built in" housemate to assist us. It's getting a little annoying that you're a "guest in our house", and have repeatedly posted that we don't have unique needs being singles living alone.


Sorry, but I, too, am single. I do understand. I just don't want to start a fight with those who aren't by saying that having children is not the answer. There needs to be a better way.


Families are the traditional individual support..  so I don't feel that there is a "better" way.  There is no type of support that I nor my siblings would not and did not offer our parents.  But if I did not have a family still able to help me then I would have to join a support group with friends or find another network of support.

What type of better way do  you see?

 

What type of better way do you see?


Well, that's the million dollar question. I don't have one. But, if we allow that question to fester in the backs of our minds, somebody might come up with one. Anybody else have any ideas?

 

Here's another similar question to ponder: When your parents tell you "grow up and leave home and get a job", what does that really mean? How far away can you really go? If we're to take space-travel seriously, who goes and who's left behind? If anyone collonizes Mars (or another galaxy), they will face the same problem. And a new definition of what a family is will be needed. Until things like this are worked out, another "Declaration Of Indepence" will be problematic. After the Moon-landing, we've never been back. That's a long time ago. I'm sure that some people still want to try. The only way to make progress is to think outside-the-box. We don't seem to be very good at it. We can't even solve the problems right in front of our nose. That's depressing. Are we really stuck in this "Space-Time Non-continuum"?

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@ASTRAEA wrote:

@dl73698250 wrote:


These problems seem to be the same even when not alone. The problem we all face, I think, is what to do when we're through with life but life's not through with us.

 


You may not have meant your comment that way, but it comes across as dismissive of issues singles who live alone face, that others don't .. unless they're caregivers for someone who can't help them.


What I meant was that people who are not alone face those same problems; they're not unique to singles. The solution might be different, but the problem is the same.

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@nyadrn - I think that being single & living alone (successfully) for years, makes us very resourceful & independent!

 

Shortly after my Mom died & my 88-year old aunt moved in with me, I fractured the heel bone on my right foot while cleaning up around my Mom's house so it could be put on the market. My foot/leg was in a non-load-bearing cast, but I had to make things as normal as possible, for my aunt. I got around the house using a walker, rather than crutches, so I could put things in a small basket & still cook & take care of things. I even took the garbage down the shorter outdoor stairs, hopping backwards down the steps, with my walker folded up & slung over a shoulder! I didn't want to risk my aunt doing it & losing her balance .. you heal faster at 50 than 88!


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@ASTRAEA wrote:

@nyadrn - I think that being single & living alone (successfully) for years, makes us very resourceful & independent!

 

Shortly after my Mom died & my 88-year old aunt moved in with me, I fractured the heel bone on my right foot while cleaning up around my Mom's house so it could be put on the market. My foot/leg was in a non-load-bearing cast, but I had to make things as normal as possible, for my aunt. I got around the house using a walker, rather than crutches, so I could put things in a small basket & still cook & take care of things. I even took the garbage down the shorter outdoor stairs, hopping backwards down the steps, with my walker folded up & slung over a shoulder! I didn't want to risk my aunt doing it & losing her balance .. you heal faster at 50 than 88!


I do agree that we become resourceful and independent..  esp if you like living alone which I do.

 

My injuries included an injured muscle and tendon in my lower back which hardly allowed me to get up for a week or so and limited my movements for a few weeks.  Without help it would not have been good.

 

You were a real trooper!  

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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@nyadrn - I had my accident in the kitchen of Mom's split level (with stairs all over), while I was waiting for the estate sale people to come over & talk about running a sale for me. I had to crawl to the front steps (inside), and go down on my rear end, to unlock the door for them .. and sit there until they showed up. The woman called the local volunteer ambulance group, to get me to the hospital, and her husband was good enough to drive my car home for me!


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I don't really know how to comment on this one without being "artificial". After all, being "civilized" is being artificially pollite. Growing up in poverty with a single mom is not easy. Not for me or her. When my parents got divorced, my dad wanted to give up his part of the house (he no longer wanted any part of it). He offered it to my sister (the oldest), then my brother (the next oldest), and it began to dawn on me that he was not going to offer it to me (the youngest). So I waved my hand and said, "I'll take it, I'll take it!". And if it wasn't for that, I would be homeless today. So, in that sense, those 5 problems for singles aren't even on my radar (I never had the luxury to be troubled by them). I am single, but not troubled by it.

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@dl73698250 wrote:

I don't really know how to comment on this one without being "artificial". After all, being "civilized" is being artificially pollite. Growing up in poverty with a single mom is not easy. Not for me or her. When my parents got divorced, my dad wanted to give up his part of the house (he no longer wanted any part of it). He offered it to my sister (the oldest), then my brother (the next oldest), and it began to dawn on me that he was not going to offer it to me (the youngest). So I waved my hand and said, "I'll take it, I'll take it!". And if it wasn't for that, I would be homeless today. So, in that sense, those 5 problems for singles aren't even on my radar (I never had the luxury to be troubled by them). I am single, but not troubled by it.


Thank you for posting.  Everyone's reality is different and we all have different perspectives on life and problems dealing with it.   It is good to remember that. 

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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I have come to love living alone, which I've done for over 25 years.   I tried the condo route, but prefer a small house because I am master of my own fate this way, rather than waiting for a board of sometimes inept directors to get things done as I prefer them.  

 

Even when our road flooded last fall after over 22 inche of rain, we neighbors helped each other.

 

A pet helps, as does a good and trustworthy handyman as I get older.  If I can't fix it, he generally can.  The money for lawn care and handyman work is also lower than my former condo fees. I also make sure that I have deadbolt locks on my doors and that they are engaged when I am home.  The most important thing in my house is me.

 

I am careful when it comes to climbing ladders inside or outdoors. Sometimes I call someone to say I will be on a ladder and will call back within the hour to say I'm done, the idea being that if I don't call back, they should check.  

 

Friends and I get togther reguarly for dinner, movies and chats.  My life has never been better.

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Hi!!!

 

I agree with you.

 

I lived with my parents for 55 years, in same house and first my mom passed away and then my dad died in 2011 and I inherited the house.

 

My dad would always say to me, when I am no longer here, I want you to sell all the extra land and sell house and move to someplace that is easier for you.

 

Well, I just turned 60 and still in family home.  I have no brothers or sisters, but Idid make some changes to house, to make it my own.  Yes, landscaping can be expensive, as I have alot of land, but I just have them mow my lawn, trim bushes and put down fertilizer for lawn.

 

I plant the flowers and tomato plants.   

 

I am also fortunate to have a handyman, who comes over whenver I call.

 

Condo living is not for me.     You really don't know who is living next to you, could be a drug dealer and I would feel unsafe.    You can't trust anybody.  I can picture someone falling asleep with a list cigarette, not a pretty picture.

 

I like where I am for the privacy.   Yes, all neighborhoods have problems, drugs everywhere, but I just mind my business and put my alarm on at night.

 

Jitterbug Cellphone is great.  They have this 5star button and if ever I don't feel good, just hit it and ambulance comes.  Also handy for any kind of emergency or danger.   Would recommend this phone to anyone that lives alone.

 

Sorry for this long chat, but I finally found a group that I can respond to.

 

Talk to you later.

 

 

Silver Conversationalist

I finally sold the house in NO after it was on the market for 2 years.  Made the move from NO to the Texas Hill Country and love it!!   I'm still in touch via FB friends as to what is going on in NO.  If you're unhappy living there as I was, just take the first steps to being where you want to be, but do the research first re the more desirable communities.  Check out the post in this forum "Aging Gracefully....." and the link Astraea gave.  Not my thing the 55+ communities, I'm too independent!!  I visited Texas a couple of years ago and bought some land here.  Beautiful country!  

 

One of my kids lived in CA, but moved to NV b/c of high taxes and cost of living (Silicon Valley has become the playground for millionaires who made big $ in the Apple, Google, and Ebay industries--housing is overpriced).  Trust me, it's never too late to make a move!!    

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What a great bunch of self reliant people! 

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Hi,

 

Not always easy.

 

It really helps to have handyman around.

 

This goes, especially for help with computer issues.    I just don't have the patience to figure out why computer is slow or just doing strange things.

 

I'm fortunate that person who helps me around house is only 19, but very knowledgeable on alot of subjects.

 

Have a great weekend, all!!!

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@bj445 wrote:

I have come to love living alone, which I've done for over 25 years.   I tried the condo route, but prefer a small house because I am master of my own fate this way, rather than waiting for a board of sometimes inept directors to get things done as I prefer them.  

 

Even when our road flooded last fall after over 22 inche of rain, we neighbors helped each other.

 

A pet helps, as does a good and trustworthy handyman as I get older.  If I can't fix it, he generally can.  The money for lawn care and handyman work is also lower than my former condo fees. I also make sure that I have deadbolt locks on my doors and that they are engaged when I am home.  The most important thing in my house is me.

 

I am careful when it comes to climbing ladders inside or outdoors. Sometimes I call someone to say I will be on a ladder and will call back within the hour to say I'm done, the idea being that if I don't call back, they should check.  

 

Friends and I get togther reguarly for dinner, movies and chats.  My life has never been better.


Wow  a great positive post!!

 

I am happy that you are happy with your choices and I hope that you will be able to continue there for as long as you choose to.  Do you have plans in case it becomes too difficult?

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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When I am no longer able to live alone--if that happens--I will probably move to an apartment or assisted living nearer to my siblings.  However, my father was 95 before he did this, so it will likely be a long time off. The proceeds from selling my home will help fund assisted living if needed.

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I enjoyed reading your post about joys of living alone. I am no longer caregiver to anyone for the first time in fifty years. I do have my two dogs Kizzy and Peanut. I too enjoy living alone finally, but maintenance is an issue. I would like a companion for dinners, movies, drives, and short trips. I still have Katrina contractor fraud PTSD, and don't trust easily. I have been saying I do not want to be a homeowner, but your post has me rethinking that. I suppose what I really don't want is to live my golden years in Louisiana. Moving will require me getting an apartment, condos and more house out of the question, as properties are high and I would not be taking on that expense at age 68, but I was reminded that rents are variable, my house paid for.  New Orleans is becoming a tourist town, and  since Katrina older homeowners are being taxed out of their homes. Anyway I'm here until I decide, in the meantime I travel, love to travel. My 48 year old niece in California is the best travel mate for now.Thanks.