I’m in my early 50’s and have been divorced for over 3 ½ years now. I’ve been here for a while and some of you may know my story. In a nut shell…I found out my ex was cheating for 1 ½ years, I tried to save our marriage by doing everything wrong, and I ended up filing and divorcing her anyway. I am currently raising my teenage kids alone.
Here’s the issue. I know many folks that are divorced. The vast majority of them, within a few years, have already remarried or are in serious relationships. My friends and relatives are constantly trying to set me up with divorced women. They all think I should be involved with someone by now. They seem to equate dating or being in a relationship with moving on. I feel like I have moved on, but alone…not with someone else. By contrast, XWW was on 3 different dating sites within 2 weeks of moving out.
Here’s the thing, I don’t seem to have any interest in dating or beginning a new relationship. I suppose it doesn’t help that I haven’t met anyone that I wanted to go on a second date with. I do miss some things about being in a relationship…especially sex and physical contact but apparently not enough to invest the time and effort into growing a relationship to get it. Unfortunately for me, I’ve always been one that only desires sex within the context of an emotional and committed relationship. Thinking about starting a new relationship just seems so exhausting to me. I would much rather spend that time and energy pursuing other interests that have a better personal rate of return with less emotional risk.
So, does this seem normal? Does anyone else here feel this same way or am I morphing into a reclusive hermit?
Wow! You basically just described my attitude about dating after my divorce; I've been divorced for 6 years. So, if they take you away to Arkham Asylum because you're not normal; they'll have to come get me too.
The thing is, I've been single long enough that I have gotten to know who I am as a person. I feel like I know myself now more than ever, and I've discovered that I enjoy being single quite well. I feel I have moved on much better on my own. As you wrote, starting a new relationship just seems exhausting to me. I've got this feeling of "been there, done that," and the thoughts of it just doesn't excite me.
I haven't totally written off a new relationship, but I just want it to happen naturally. If I bump into a woman at the grocery sometime or a woman is hired at my work and we click, that's fine, but I'm not hitting the town on weekends looking for women; I just don't have the desire. Like you, I'm happier putting the energy into doing something else. I see where people ask for advice about dating after a divorce, and i think, "Good grief, you've only been single a few weeks, what's the rush?"
I'm sure this is due to personality type. Some people just can't stand to be alone for 10 minutes, or the thoughts of not being in a relationship, so, as soon as one relationship ends, they are right back in the game. Personally, I don't get lonely just because I'm not in a relationship. Heck, some of the times I enjoy most are being at home by myself.
Another thing I have in common is that I too only enjoy sex within a committed and emotional relationship; however, I didn't really realize that about myself until after the divorce. Oddly enough, I wanted sex more often than my x wife; that was actually one of our issues, but since we are divorced and that emotional tie is gone, that is no longer a driving force either. I suppose sexual desire is what drives a lot of people to seek out new relationships so quickly.
For whatever reason, a lot of people think single people are sad and lonely if they are not in a relationship and that one can't be truly happy unless they are, and if you aren't dating after a certain period, I guess they assume you must have mental issues, but that doesn't apply to everyone. The key is knowing yourself. If a person is truly happy being single, why try to force anything else? It doesn't really matter whether other people understand it or not; they won't be the ones having to deal with your relationship.