Saturday, May 4, 2013

How to Socialise as a Single?

It's been a long time since I've had to. Maybe I should say 'single and elderly'. I was over 50 years younger then — given that I had so little time between marriages that that hardly counts. And anyway, I knew the ropes back then.

Now ... well, I wrote a poem about all the pitfalls and surprises. Read more ...

It's been something of a revelation. So at first I was thinking I would have to learn new rules. 

And indeed, I guess I do have to be prepared for those differences I've now encountered. Although the wedding ring is back on my wedding finger, it doesn't look very obviously like a wedding ring. It's not the traditional plain gold band, but jewelled. Though I wouldn't have thought an overweight 73-year-old was much enticement to anyone, I was mistaken. The person concerned accepted that it was a misunderstanding and we're still friends, with no repercussions, but if it could happen once it could happen again. Do I have to be careful now not to give the wrong impression to others? I do hope not. 

Flattering, you think? I suppose so, but I don't feel particularly thrilled about that aspect, just that it's a nuisance and the last thing I want. (I wrote a poem about that, too. Read more ...) I begin to see the usefulness of a period of mourning, as in the past, when the widow wore black to signify not only bereavement but that she was still unapproachable to suitors. I can undertstand now why Queen Victoria wore it the rest of her long life after losing her beloved Albert.

As for the other thing, of being relegated to the society of other older single women, it happens that some of them are among the most interesting people I know. So that's only mildly irritating and largely amusing. 

I have met one new friend my age who wasn't in the least worried about having me meet her very nice husband too — but they are a European couple, perhaps more intelligent on such matters. And, as I said in one of the poems, the old friends aren't bothered either. 

So I have decided to do socialising just how I want to, pleasing myself. I've decided to do as I would if I were still part of a couple (and providing my partner was in good health; my darling's poor health did restrict our socialising in his final years).

I have friends who invite me for visits, where they would once have invited the two of us, and I have started issuing reciprocal invitations. No reason I can't entertain, I realise. I'm not much of a cook, but then I never was. That doesn't mean we can't eat well. It's a pleasure to plan these occasions and to get in delectable goodies for my friends to enjoy. 

And when there are outings that I think my friends — single or coupled — might enjoy sharing with me, I'll ask them.


  1. Sure sounds like you're on the right path for success and sometimes, the less you think about some things, lets all that pressure ease up! I've learned somewhere along the line too, that it's important to stay true to you, and do the things you like and low and behold while you're in the middle of your favorite thing you just might meet some other great folks that share your likes as well, and just enjoy each golden day, it's really all we can do. Live to the fullest! Good luck and enjoy yourself!

  2. yes! Do the things you like to do and when you want ask others to join you. When I was a single mom that's what I did. and then when you are least expecting it meet the nicest people.
    Have a lovely week!

  3. Hi Rosemary ~~ At first I thought you had remarried because of my read on your April 23 poem about moving your ring to the 'married' finger.

    I can still remember my three years of being single between marriages. I wasn't looking for a wife but was dating some. My experiences were varried but every one was enjoyable in one way or another.

    Besides my firt encounters with Mrs. Jim the next most memorable in detail was a blind date arranged by a married work friend. We had dinner, saw a movie, had dessert, and then we split.

    The dinner was memorable because it was an 'all-you-can-eat' shrimp night at the place we ate. The only catch was that we had to peel our own shrimp. I was slow, the others were finished and wanted to go, so they all proceeded to peel my shrimp until I had eaten enough.

    I don't remember the movie nor the dessert, but I do remember the split. We went to my date's apartment where she tried to influence me into testing for Mensa. You can Google that. It is the largest and oldest high IQ society in the world and she was a member.

    We talked about that and then I went home. I never saw her again. Mrs. Jim says that she couldn't have been too very smart if she peeled a lot of shrimp for me.

    Best wishes for single life. It is fun in a way although I am very glad to be married so far now in my old age.

    Oh yes, I would like to take that Mensa test at some time. And I would like to see this lady one time again for some closure.

    1. Oh, dear Jim, thanks for sharing your experiences. Yes, I think Mrs Jim is the smart one! Also, high IQ is fine, and no doubt an advantage, but emotional intelligence may be even more important.

      No, as you have now realised, moving the ring back to that finger was meant as a 'keep off' sign.

      Andrew, whom I recently lost, was actually my third husband (I was his second wife) and when we met he was 63 and I was nearly 53. He'd been divorced (though not without relationships) for 19 years; I'd been separated 10 months. We were lucky in each other, as you and Mrs Jim obviously are too.

      But now my socialising is different. I am not even looking for dates. A couple of clairvoyants have told me there will come a man, but just for outings and companionship, not romance. That might be nice at some stage, but I'm in no hurry. Still dealing with grief and self-discovery, and fortunately supported by good friends with whom I can socialise.


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