Still a dreamer…Old Memories and New Hopes

Moving and living in New York City after my husband died, opened my eyes to another lifestyle. A lifestyle made up of wonderful women companions, I always call my “emotional transfusions.” When my husband died, my life as I knew it died. Where I lived, what I did, who I did it with, how I felt, and more importantly who I was. In my world, I no longer existed . I was of the belief that my husband and I completed one another. Today I think the word used is complement one another so the dependency isn’t so acute when one or the other dies. I am of the belief that the intensity of ones grief parallels the intensity of the relationship one is grieving for. Please know I am not some angry or bitter woman. First of all, I have nothing to be angry or bitter about. But, as someone who writes, I do observe and for the most part, it is said that “women grieve and men replace.” That may very well be true, but there are reasons for that. The widowers and divorced guys, no matter what, are this years Bradley Cooper, and women, well, think of a drug on the market. Women joke that if a guy drives and can take you to dinner, he’s off the market in a matter of months.I don’t need a ride and dinners out, not number one on my list of needs. It is also a fact that men find living alone worse than women. I knew men, who when their wives died after almost 40 and more years of marriage, actually told me they gave themselves a month to four months to find another. That certainly would move their grief along. I only know of one woman who actually made it her business to find another spouse. She wanted to be a couple again, and she was fixed up. Happily remarried, it all worked out. They have much in common.There are women who also can’t be alone, and decide to go after what they need…A male companion, not necessarily a lover. It does happen, miracles do happen, but I am talking about the average. I was involved in women’s issues for over fifty years in New Jersey, and in New York, have only single women friends. Women love to talk and I love to listen. Divorced women have said it’s worse feeling alone being married. The bottom line is that it is very difficult for single women of all ages, if you prefer not being single. If your standards are high, really not easy. When I went on and vowed never again, I said I was low maintenance, but high standards. Years ago, wrote a piece called I Wish I Was A Lesbian. It was written heartfelt, poignant and I hoped humorous. It was published, first page, in some Upper East Side freebie. I was never paid, but it was published. I was so happy when a wonderful gay couple, together for many years and now married, were at a celebration of life, as I was, and gave them my article to read. They liked, printed, and sent to many of their friends. Made me feel great. I jokingly asked if there was some sort of lesbian school I could attend because it was so easy to meet great women. Of course we laughed and realized there is no on and off switch for sexuality. I also have a dear friend who managed a doctor’s office in the city when I lived in New Jersey. She was always asking me if I knew any nice guys. Seems the young women who came to the office were all in their late 30’s and 40’s and meeting no one. Quoting Joy Behar’s gynecologist as she did when on The View, “he never saw so many unused vagina’s as he does in NYC.” End of quote and no need to comment at length….but from my point of view a true statement. So with all the strides women have made and they have. Women doctors, lawyers, police persons, fire persons, soldiers, you name the field, women are there. How many women actually ask a man to marry. How many women take the first step and approach a man or send a drink over. I know we are not all frozen in the 50’s, or have like myself, become a born again virgin, with no religious connotation intended. It’s a fact that socially, women have not made that many strides. So what do women do. If young enough and gutsy, if you want to become a mother, you don’t have to be a wife first. If you need physical release, you take matters in your own hand. What you can’t do is whine or complain. Strong women would be very resentful if you don’t learn how to live without a man. The problem is living without having a man love you as you love him, a huge void. I recreated myself and moved from New Jersey rather quickly to New York City. The energy of the city fills the void, a little. I read that Gloria Steinem is traveling more, not searching for a man, but enjoying new and wonderful experiences in her 80’s. Many women have told me they couldn’t care less about being with a man, too much trouble. It’s over for them. I have friends who still dream and hope for a late in life love. I go back and forth from Betty White “I had the best, who needs the rest.” to, why not me?

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