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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 31 of 57

In Response to RE: Are you happy living alone? by kaytoy

Since all of us can only speak from our own experience, in listening carefully to what you've said, it is not my intention to tell you what to do, but to lend supportive encouragement, as a woman who has been in your position. Choosing to end a long term marriage was the most difficult decision of my life, and required weighing the pros and cons for not only months, but years. Do you have friends and family who will be there to help you through the emotional turmoil that is an inescapable element of this transition?

Most important is your own inner conviction. At some point we reach that place where faith in ourselves (and hopefully, something greater than ourselves) replaces fear of the unknown. Do you have a plan of action? Can you visualize yourself living independently? Depending on what state you live in, divorce (and separation) laws vary. Consult with an attorney; but don't "hire" anyone by paying a large retainer, until you've thought about the results of that consultation for awhile.

It's possible to shift the way you live now, without leaving the marriage. Years before my marriage ended, I stopped allowing my husband's preferences to over-rule mine. I'm not talking about how to spend money, but how to spend the most precious commodity we have, our time and energy.

I do highly recommend ordering Carolyn Myss' set of four CD's on "Self Esteem". In listening to her discussions on that topic, I grew to understand the ways in which my own self-esteem had bottomed out. My spirit had become diminished and deflated over the course of time. I came across those CDs recently, and am listening to them again now, as true words of wisdom are timeless. If you're a reader, innumerable books have been written on this very subject. You're not alone!

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 32 of 57

 Hello Friends:

 

 It is not going to be easy to make a decision that can change the rest of your life.  Not when you know in real time that you are doing such.  But, everyday, you make a decision to get out of bed.  The trick is this.  Each day is a new day.  You presume that it will be like the day before.  We safely live this way to remain sane.  What if, on next Tuesday, you get out of bed as usual, but, oops, you slip and break your arm, leg etc.?

 

 

 

Future time is before us, present time is the now which lasts but one second, and past time is all that time that is not before us or in the now.  I can tell you a great deal about my past time.  I can tell you I am typing this entry right now.  I cannot tell you about my future time, except that second by second, it is coming at me, I type, and it is in the past.

 

 It is far easier to worry about what has not happened than to worry about what has already happened and cannot be changed.  One, you are still waiting on.  The other, you had your one second chance and it is over.

 

 

 

Some people actually enjoy stressing over something.  It gives them a sense of power over time and their lives.  The most difficult thing to do is to accept things as they appear to be, decide on how you feel about them, and then, with certainty, make the decision to act on them for better or worse.

 

 Remember, life has three sides, like a coin.  Heads, tails, and the ridge of the coin.  Think about this.  Heads is the future coming at you.  Tails is the past.  The ridge is where you walk and the coin of life turns.  When you stop, the coin keeps turning.  If you do not start walking, you will fall off eventually.  If you walk to fast, you can fall forward as well.  So, you need to keep a balance in your life that affords you the opportunity to keep in balance with events as they pass through your life.

 

 

 

Another consideration.  Everyone has a life string.  Cut a piece of string about 18 inches long.  Hold that string with the left and right hands out in front of you stretched to it’s length.  Your life and all of your days are on that string.  Left to right, you are born, you live, you die.  Simple.  Well, as simple as this idea might be, people over the ages would use such a concept and put little knots or larger knots in the string to mark small and big events.  To remind them that they happened and at the same time, are in the past, always part of their life string.

 

 If someone right now came into your life and said, I will be there for you till the end, you might feel more compelled to make a change in your life.  You want a guarantee that you will not die alone.  That you will have a “date,” for parties, and holidays.  That someone will take responsibility for you.  We all want that at some point in our life.  But, by playing it safe in this manner, we miss out on living.

 

 “All humans die, only a few really live!”

 

 One life to live.  One life to experience reality of this form of living.  The clock is ticking.  Will you always regret not having lived?  Some live as a prisoner of their mind.  Unable to make the changes that lead to a better life.  I think the problem is simple and complex at the same time.  Nature solves such problems by creating a “balance of nature.”  Do not hang on to life, live it, because there is an absolute guarantee here.  You will meet your end, when you do and not a second before.  That really is the only future bound thing that I can state with any certainty.

 

 Many trains will pass through your life.  If you wait for the “perfect” train, you will miss out on living!

 

 Hugs

 

 

 

Daniel

 

 

 

 
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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 33 of 57

In Response to RE: Are you happy living alone? by marcianoren

Thank you for your reply Marcianoren. You make great sense. I think I have realized the problem.  I am so afraid that if I get out of the marriage and wind up all alone, or lose my job and be broke, that I will have to live with the fact knowing I put myself in that predicament, that it would be my fault because I left.  However, I keep thinking if I caught him running around, or if he walked in and told me he wanted out...then whatever happened to me in the future would be okay, because it wouldn't be my fault.  Does this make sense, and what do you do with this???  If I walk out and fail...I don't think I could live with the guilt that I did it to myself.

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 34 of 57

In Response to RE: Are you happy living alone? by dan62iel

Daniel, thank you so much for taking the time to post your thoughts. Somehow I find the fence safe. Doesn't make sense, I know. I hope you are moving on now in a healthy way.  I, too, watched my mom pass away just like you described your dad. And you are right....we are simply on a journey.  The things around me are all insignificant. Suppose your father didn't have you around, or anyone else at the time of his death. That is my fear...being old and dying alone. Stupid, I know. And all the things you mentioned...money, lawyers, settlement, find a place to live.....I almost don't have the energy, he's worn me down that much. It helps to talk to someone. Thank you for replying. I will read your post many times.

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 35 of 57

 Hello Friends:

 

I am not one to really engage in telling someone else how to behave or what to do.  As an Electrical Engineer, I know all too well, there are too many variables in social science, to permit me or anyone outside of the relationship to “design” a workable answer that will satisfy all concerned.

 

In November 2009, I came to my father’s home (brother was taking care of him), because of the upcoming dissolution (divorce) after 40+ years.  Short and too the point.  I had not been home to see my mother or father since 2000, and before that, 1975.  My mother passed without me present, February 2007.  My father turned 92 in June 2010 and we had a really good summer together working the 3 acre yard, killing weeds, trimming trees that had not been trimmed for about 8 years and such fun.

 

Where is this going?  To the end.  He passed on December 14th 2010.  I was right here.  Right in his presence.  This is what I saw.  Dad had deteriorated to the point that he could not eat and would not take water.  He lay in his bed, for the last time over a 7 day period.  On the morning of the 14th, around 7:30am, he was no longer really conscious of me in the room with him.  He slowly breathed in and out.  In and out.  Then, one last time, and closed his eyes, with his mouth agape!  The chest stopped moving.  The end!

 

No music playing, no crashing cymbals’, no drum roll.  The end!  Dad went quietly and without any indication that it was coming.  Regardless of what you may think or believe, this is what I know, he is gone from this place and that is all I can verify!  There is simply no form of science that can define any more or less than that.

 

The reasoning here.  You take absolutely nothing with you.  When you go, not if, you go as you came, taking nothing with you.  You will need no pockets.  A shroud as no pockets as such.

 

How to apply this here.  Choice number (1).  Stay in the relationship and say nothing.  Time will take care of that in the end.  Choice number (2).  Do as I said before, have a meeting of the minds and see if he is wiling to meet you half-way.  Choice number (3).  If you are convinced at this time that there is no hope, the hope rests inside of you.  You can simply choose number (1) and do nothing.  Number (2), taking some type of reasonable action.  You can see how choice number (3) becomes circular.

 

Choice number (4), risk what you know and have.  Make a plan to exit the marriage quietly.  Find a new place to stay that you can afford.  Talk with people in the “shelter” business.  Execute the plan only after you have the fundamentals in place and organized.  Businesses do not just pick up and move most of the time.  The move is planned.  Do the same.  If you can plan meals, juggle assorted tasks as such for home and employment, you have a great deal more going for you than you know.

 

 

I will tell you this.  Do not just get up one day and walk out.  Too much is left to chance.  Talk with counselors that you trust and perhaps an attorney so you can understand what would be involved.  Remember, America makes money on divorce!  There are many hidden costs and you will be surprised by those costs in the business of the legal world.

 

Time is money for the lawyer.  His/her job, while necessary as it may be, can and will at times be rather upsetting as you learn about “time” and how it can cost you.  Keeping that to a minimum in telephone calls, meetings and email, yes they will charge you for reading your emails to them.  It is about “time” and the consumption thereof.

 

Do not try the do-it-your-self route.  You can get badly burned.  Find an attorney that is not affiliated with your husband.  Most will offer you 15-30 minutes of free time to advise you and spell out the costs that you will face.  Before this step, be sure that this is what you need to do.  If your State permits “dissolution,” a case of “the marriage is irretrievably broken,” such as in Florida, you only need to have been a resident for 6 months before filing the dissolution papers.  Many states recognize some form of this and you can just agree with the spouse to divide things equally as much as possible for those assets that were earned in the marriage.  401k, IRA, home, cars, boats, etc.  Keep it simple.  Complications take “time”, = money = stress = mistakes!

 

You tipped your hand here with (ya’ll), as someone of Southern roots.  I have lived in the South for 30+ years and understand that if you are in the deep central south, this idea of divorce can be very, very, upsetting.  I just spent 18 months trying to convince my (ex-spouse of 40+ years and bi-polar), to seek counseling, to just talk with me about what has been bothering her all these years.  Some people cannot talk about their feelings or their personal selves.  I have some ideas and they were not attributed directly to me as she has hinted.  Never the less, after 18 months of phone calls, emails, and things going wrong for her on a major scale, the dissolution was signed on April 18, 2011.  Done deal!  She does not understand this right now, but, I would still take a bullet for her!  I have not given up, only granted her what she asked for.  In time, if she should need me, I will be there!

 

On average, hard to believe, with no children, simple dissolution can be done in 30 days after filing if you and the spouse work out an “agreement of stipulation.”  If you have to go into “arbitration,” that can get expensive.  If everything is filed at one time, the Courts have become very efficient at getting things like this done quickly.

 

So …… be prepared!  Talk to some professionals!  Get an idea of what it is going to take in your State.  Get some help calculating things in the financial sector if that is not your cup of tea!  Decide …… get off the fence!  Are you that bad off?  Are things really that bad at home?  What is it that you want?  WHAT ARE YOU WILLING TO DO ABOUT IT?

 

 

Hugs

 

Daniel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 36 of 57

 My father retired, suffered from lack of purpose and died four years later.  As I approached retirement age, I saw, not an ending, but an opportunity to start a new life.  I opened my mind to family and new friends.  My little God Daughter inspired me to write a short story about her.  A  talented, young singer-songwriter encouraged me to write.  I traveled the world and realized my passions were writing and travel. 

 

Following my intuition that told me I needed a different place to thrive in my new life, after a lifetime practicing law in California, I moved to Boston, a writer’s town.  I sought guidance for my writing from my singer-songwriter friend and a great writing teacher, Natalie Goldberg.  After I attended a workshop she taught, she invited me to her intensive program of four week long writing retreats in Taos, New Mexico, and I began writing my memoir about my three marriages.  Reliving my role in the destruction of those marriages was excruciatingly painful.  But writing about what I perceived as the greatest failure in my life ultimately healed me.  Writing Digging Deep: A writer uncovers His Marriages brought me the peace I had been searching for.  I decided to publish this intensely personal work because I think it will help others to face and deal with issues in their own relationships.

 

I was ready for adventure and drew on my other passion.  I moved to Paris and spent a year in France and Italy, enjoying the thrills and challenges of living in a different culture.  After that year I was ready to come home to California.  I need my home, but I will continue to write and travel.  I have learned to live my passions.   

 

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 37 of 57

In Response to RE: Are you happy living alone? by kaytoy

Kaytoy:  You are frightened of what might happen, a common fear.  But let me ask you one question:  Can you go on living the way you are living for the rest of your life?  Do you really want to?  Is that better than biting the bullet and facing what might happen?  Well, sorry.  That is more than one question.

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 38 of 57

Thank you for your responses. I simply feel lost. Deep, deep down inside I tell myself I know I would be happier without him and all the negativism. But ya'll, I have to be realistic. What happens if I leave, then lose my job? What would I do?  Or, what happens if I leave, and develop an awful disease...what would I do?  The fear of being old and all alone, or on the street with no job is so immense for me. I'm not afraid of being by myself, for I am not a social butterfly by nature anyway. But being alone is a totally different thing. It's sad and embarrasing to say, but I almost wish I could catch him in an affair because then I would have a definite reason, and then if I fail on my own, it wouldn't be my fault. I guess part of the fear is that if I failed on my own, I would always have to live with the fact that it was my fault...I chose to leave.  Am I crazy???

 
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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 39 of 57

 Hello Friends:

 

I am rather reluctant to examine a statement, then, impose a personal judgment based on my own opinions and experience, presuming it should be considered an answer to the original statement provided by the concerned individual.  Phew!  Yes, even I had to read that again, and no, I am not a lawyer.

 

The number one mistake I am told, is to “assume” something about another without directly talking about it.  So, with that concept in mind, how about this; tell your spouse that you need to set aside some time with him for an important discussion.  That alone will get bells ringing in his head.  Do not, absolutely, do not talk about the topic at that moment, regardless.  Just agree to a day and time for now for your important talk.

 

That done, you have set in motion, a specific time period that will allow you now to collect your thoughts and to prepare for your “presentation.”  We do this in business, it will work as well at home.

 

Forget and set aside your emotional feelings right now.  Emotions have no business in a talk that can be emotional.  We get angry, we cry, we virtually lose control of the meeting when we get emotional.  This meeting is going to be about ……. “The relationship.”

 

On the day of the meeting, set up the kitchen/dining room table with a nice grouping of cheese, crackers, wine, or no alcohol, water etc,.  Napkins are a nice touch.  A vase of flowers as well.  No dead roses or black roses please!

 

The scene is set.  You have every right to expect your husband to appear on time.  It is a meeting.  Coming late to the meeting is a sign of disrespect and often controlling behavior on the part of the late attendee.  If your husband is more than 15 minutes late, and it is obvious to you it was deliberate, cancel the meeting.  Change of venue.  You have to go out.  Reschedule the meeting.  Do not tip your hand in kindness a to the content of the proposed meeting.

 

Let’s presume, that he was on time, even a bit early.  Great.  He is curious and or interested in what you have to say.  No TV!  Dress like you would do, if you were going to a meeting.  Professional!  Every house husband and house wife knows how to transform themselves for an important engagement.

 

In the meeting, tell your husband that you want to discuss your current day-to-day living arrangement.  His eyes will roll back in his head!  Do not point your finger.  Do not say, “you do this and you do that.”  Do not play the blame game!  It will always take two to Tango!

 

If your husband has always been the one that takes care of the finances, then my observation is, he is feeling crunched by the economy, regardless of how much money you may have available to you.  He may be looking down the road 25 more years and cannot figure out how he is going to make the money last that long. (???).

As well, if he has been responsible for the money earned outside the home, he could as well, be feeling very depressed over the Country’s state of the economy.  It is not easy these days for people over 50 to find anything but part-time work.  Business has gone “lean” by getting rid of higher paid workers and that is anyone over 45 years of age.

 

Express to your husband your concerns over how things have been going around the home.  What is it that he would like to see change?  That’s right, what would he like to see change?  Give him the lead to tell you his observations.  

 

If he cannot or will not talk to you, you may need to be a bit more aggressive and tell him about what you would like to see change.  That you are willing to meet him halfway.

 

I was married for almost 42 years recently.  My spouse was 1st born of 7 children and resided in the Southern Ohio area.  She like other siblings, raised on a farm, found it impossible to talk about themselves, how they were feeling, or to contribute in any manner, to their marriages that all went sour more than once.  My ex-spouse had an Aunt on her father’s side that was married and divorced 7 times.  My ex-sister-in-law was married and divorced 5 times.  2 of the 5 boys have been married and divorced 4 times each.  DNA can be downright difficult when combined with a poor childhood experience and often leads to major problems in adulthood.

 

Consider your background and that of your spouse.  Are there issues from the family trees’, from growing up, etc.  There may be some insight here when you look at the bigger picture.

 

In closing, professional help on a local level can be a good thing.  But, the professional must be neutral.  The fewer polarities the better.  Choosing your church pastor, assuming he has a different pastor does not go at all, will be considered an attempt by you to control the situation.  There is no reason for anyone to suffer through a marriage.  I just learned, it is a piece of paper.  My spouse and I could reconcile next week, get a new marriage license and be married again in a jiffy!  No, that is not going to happen, but regardless, it boils down to this, absolutely nothing in this universe is forever.  Make the best of it and you can then know you did your best!  Opinions are like “belly buttons,” we all have one!

 

 

Hugs

 

Daniel

 

 

 

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RE: Are you happy living alone?

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Message 40 of 57

In Response to RE: Are you happy living alone? by kaytoy

I'd like to offer a supportive argument for moving on when a long term marriage causes ongoing misery. From reading your post, it appears that you are doing all the giving, and not receiving in return. I left a 35 year marriage 5 years ago and love my life. Of course the divorce process itself, and adapting to a new way of living takes time. But living with a person whose negativity and miserliness is ongoing is like staying tuned into a radio station that delivers only bad news. My ex was much like your husband, except he was a workaholic who had no time for others. I owned a successful company with him (and 4 other partners). There was plenty of money for travel, and for gifting friends. If I spent money based on my own decisions, he complained. If I wanted to take a trip that didn't interest him, he refused to accompany me, so I traveled with friends instead. Two  years after the divorce, I met a retired attorney who taught me the true meaning of "miserly". Although he has positive qualities, as everyone does, the negative influence of his critical thinking, limited willingness to go out and have fun (because of the cost), showed me that once again, I had attracted a partner who was similar to my ex. So I terminated the romantic aspect of that relationship and have been able to retain a good friendship with this man. I am encouraging him to move on, to find someone else who is more compatible with his lifestyle.

Thinking (feeling) that because you've invested so much time, love and energy into a long-term marriage you must "stick it out" for the rest of your life is questionable. If you live another 30 years, why not find out how good it can feel to create positivity in each day, without becoming deflated by someone else's constant negative feedback. It's important to have at least one or two supportive friends to help you through the transition, because at first it does feel strange to be utterly independent. Of course it's not wise to jump into another romantic relationship until you have healed from the grief that comes with ending a long-term marriage. Learn to enjoy your own company and find the routine of life that makes you happy.

I believe that "nothing is ever wasted" in terms of time spent in relationships. We learn and grow from all that we experience. I am determined not to repeat the mistakes of the past, and know more clearly what I truly need, should I enter another relationship. A partner who cares about sustaining a positive attitude and a joyful, generous spirit.

The worst kind of lonilness comes from feeling alone with a spouse or partner who makes you feel miserable, or staying in a relationship that does not feel authentic.

Wishing you the best possible outcome!

 

 

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