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[QUOTE=Lance0204;3041174] the way i see it, i either meet someone in the "real world" or i won't. the past few weeks i've actually gotten out of the house and met ome people in dance classes. i'm pretty good at it and i pretty much interact with all the women there. the goal is not necessarily to date anyone there but to expand my comfort zone. its hard finding a balance between not trying and "putting myself in position"..especially with your family reminding you that you're single. if people would just live and let live...:rolleyes:[/QUOTE]

Lance, you are right indeed! Dance classes sound as though they really work for you, because you enjoy them anyway and you get on with the other people there. Yes do expand your comfort zone!

Otherwise, why do people think they are doing you some sort of service if they project their own miserable dread of solitude on to you :rolleyes: because of some ill-founded assumption that if they don’t, you ‘might be sorry later’?

I actually wrote a lot of this when I finally got round to responding to your previous post, but didn’t think I could post everything at once.

I really think I did suffer from being force-fed stuff about relationships. I grew up not caring greatly, although I assumed I’d meet someone in time. But I was in no hurry. This horrified friends! I suffered remarks like: ‘You don’t want to be left on the shelf!’ If I thought for myself I was greeted with the cliché: ‘You’ll regret it later!’ How did people presume to know what someone else might regret later?

So I am supposed to have produced some children I didn’t want on the very shaky grounds that people whom I’ve met from time to time assume I would be sorry if I didn’t! I was not supposed to answer that I could be sorry if I did have them! Not only do I have the right to decide this for myself, but even rapists and murderers have mothers who may well wish they’d never bothered!

Eventually I yielded to the pressure to seek marriage. You could see the casual acquaintances breathing a sigh of relief. ‘Oh, good! She’ll be happy now!’ Yet it was just the start of making myself utterly miserable because of a problem not acknowledged to exist.

The only part of this misery that I believe stemmed from inside myself came in my mid twenties when my young brother got married, yet I’d never even had a boyfriend, so I felt very lonely and sidelined within the family.

After years of the dating agencies, I eventually came to decide happiness was valuing what I had, not hankering after what I hadn’t got, and all the miserable pressure stated again!

The deepest need I ever felt was firstly when I was in trauma, but how could I attract anyone then? (There was one guy, but he was a real heavyweight who’d been abused himself and I think he planned to lean on me before I’d even been able to sort myself out. He refused to let me cheer up when I needed to!)

More to the point, there was the wonderful man whose intervention in my trauma was so effective that I always think: ‘He gave me back my life!’ And I think what life means, how beautiful it is, and how much I had wanted to die sooner than suffer as I had before. So even now, ten years later, I weep tears of intense gratitude. That did indeed make me think what a relationship could be like. I felt extreme sorrow that I had never even slept one night with a lover! But he turned out to be married and it was a long hard road to meeting the one man who did love me for a few years, so those feelings were resolved.

So sometimes the need for a partner is real, but I feel so much of it is artificially created by society, and it makes people miserable in two different ways.

Either they are urged to marry someone they could have lived without and regret it later. Or they are not allowed to adjust happily to being single. And why exactly does a soulmate have to turn up while you are young? Surely if this is going to happen, it can be at any age! So…family and friends urge you into the arms of Miss Wrong, saying: ‘Ah, he’ll be happy now!’ Then some years later you meet Miss Right, but you’ve complicated the issue with a messy painful divorce!

My best friend, who has been married twice, complains about people who tell her that women who have no children must be selfish! Yet her reasons make perfect sense! Her first marriage was so abusive there was no way she was going to subject a child to a violent father! When she married her second husband, he already had three children for her to mother, and, since raising them was costing an arm and a leg, there simply wasn’t enough money to give a fourth child a satisfactory upbringing.

Of course I have to endure the accusation of selfishness, but surely all I am doing is preventing other people from being selfish to me? A favourite ploy of these dating agency men is to explain that we will do everything for each other because that is the only way to experience True Happiness! Hmm! I suspect that they mean I can only achieve True Happiness by waiting on them hand and foot, while their part in True Happiness is to sit back and make sure I get on with it!

Oh, and thoughts like that are criticised as ‘cynical’! I am, of course, only supposed to think what I am told to think! :rolleyes:

I know exactly why I have never wanted children…Another day…. I’ve been at the computer so long!

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