I feel lost

posted 2 weeks ago in Emotional
Post # 2
Member
1360 posts
Bumble bee

You don’t have to try online dating.  But the ways people meet in today’s world have changed from decades past.  It used to be that people met at church and through family members, now people meet at work and online.  People have met through friends and at college (uni) both then and now, but I am very painfully aware that friends tend to drift away after graduation and especially after they get into serious relationships or married themselves.  You will simply have fewer options for meeting people if you don’t do it online, but we had a thread about how we met our SO and a decent number of bees did it in a way other than online.

Your kids are getting older, which means you can have some time to yourself.  You have been left behind perhaps by necessity, a single mom (mum) of 3 isn’t going to be able to easily date under the best of circumstances.  Your oldest turning 16 is good for her, but it’s also good for you.  She can look after the younger ones while you finally get to go out.  You can turn this around.

As for how to meet people if you don’t want to do it online, the best ways are through work and a hobby or volunteering.  Those are fine ways to meet people, but I do encourage you to try online since it expands the pool of people you will come across.  It doesn’t have to be a nerveracking experience.  For many people, only the very first stage is done online, a basic get to know you, and then it moves to phone calls and in-person meets such as for coffee or a walk in the park.  There’s nothing to lose by trying it, it can supplement the other methods for meeting people.  If you don’t like it, if you aren’t comfortable with it, you don’t have to continue.

Post # 3
Member
611 posts
Busy bee

36 is young, your kids will be grown up and you will be in your prime. I have tons of friends who delayed kids and are now regretting it as they raise small kids into their 40s who will be teenagers when they are in their 50s. What I am trying to say is your mindset needs to pivot from full on child centric to having time to look after you. Figure out a few things you always wanted to try out and give them a go. I would not put any pressure on yourself regarding a relationship, firstly figure out what your goals are going forward and start giving those your free time and life will follow. You’ve defined yourself as a mum for so long it will be a tough adjustment as they fly the coop but it happens to all parents at some point. Best wishes for the future.

Post # 4
Member
478 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

While I am not in your position, I am sorry you feel so alone. The loss of your mother must be incredibly hard, I am so sorry. I dread that day. It sounds like you now have no one to really lean on while still taking care of your children. I am sure you are burned out, anyone would be! So my first thought is please take care of yourself. I know we would do anything for our kids, and it sounds like you are an amazing parent- know they are SO LUCKY to have you!! Don’t be afraid to start taking more time for yourself. You deserve it and your kids will be happy to see you so happy and fulfilled. You are still so young! 

I would sit down and just make a list of everything you would like to do one day. Don’t think about what is realistic, just anything and everything. Try to list at least 100 things but keep going if you think of more. It can be bucket list items, travel, goals, or even things you just think could be fun (pet a tiger, visit Iceland, get a certain degree or certificate, star in a music video). Know that this probably won’t all happen, but the goal is to forget about reality for a bit and just get it all out there on paper. You will be surprised what comes to you! And you can definitely put things down like “meet someone great and get married”, if that is something you want one day. No wrong answers here!

When you’ve made your list, leave it alone and come back to it a day or week later. You’ll be amazed at some of the things you thought of! Then see what goals really stand out to you. If you want to travel, make it an official goal. Start thinking of what you need to do to make it happen. Don’t think “well, that money could be better spent on xyz…” If you need to pick up a little extra work for some months to save, explore that idea. Just be creative. Feel free to work on multiple goals at once. Travel was a big one for me, but to do that I needed to be financially healthy. I also wanted to be physically healthy and know the language and culture of where I was going. So I worked on my finances, my fitness, and personal studies all while working towards my big goal of traveling. It was awesome. Little goals are great too! I even wrote down things like “watch five new movies this year” or “read 10 new books”. Etc etc. This will help you reclaim your own identity, dreams, and goals. And it’s ok to have goals around your kids too! But just make sure you have some for just yourself too. 🙂

I know you feel guilty saying you are jealous, but I think it’s so healthy that you can properly name and share your true emotions. We can’t help how we feel, only how we act! Jealousy is ok as long as you can then use that feeling to work towards a positive place, and not dwell in the negativity. So if you think “I’d like a relationship”, you can think of things that go with that. Have you been wanting a new outfit or haircut? Can you go somewhere you are likely to meet someone? Etc etc. 

Lastly, I know you don’t want to date online, but I’d like to urge you to at least consider it. Many, many people meet online now. I met my husband online and most of my age group (30ish) and friends have as well. There are a lot of duds but you just have to stick with what you want. It’s like going into a thrift shop- a lot of stuff is not a great find but there are some amazing finds as well if you know what you need! Don’t rush and don’t settle. I always recommend women look through all the profiles and message guys who interest you. They don’t have to be perfect so have an open mind, but also be selective. I liked my husband’s profile because he was funny, wrote a lot in his profile, had a lot of similar interests, and had kind eyes and great arms. I messaged him and basically said “hey, I like your profile and also enjoy abc and xyz. Feel free to take a look at my profile too, though it’s still a work in progress! If you aren’t interested, no worries! Have a great day!” He wasn’t the only one I messaged but the others fizzled out pretty quickly. We ended up getting along way better than I expected, but to this day he is funny, kind, has great interests and I’m still crazy about him (and his eyes and arms!). I found I got better results when messaging people I liked rather than just replying to guys who messaged me. My husband also found it really refreshing that I messaged him first. Guys rarely get messages from girls and even if they spend ages reading your profile and crafting a great message, most girls get so much attention that they rarely reply. So then guys start to put quantity over quality and that’s how you get thousands of men all messaging one line to like 30 women a day lol. I felt like this way cut through all that and got my message across that I was interested to guys that I thought could potentially be a good fit!

I just want to say I am sorry you feel stuck and alone. I think you are doing amazing and should be proud of yourself. I’m sure you’re not frumpy at all, you are soooo young still. Don’t be afraid to put yourself first more. Dream big and don’t let anything hold you back. This is your time!!

Post # 5
Member
478 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

I also recommend the article “The ultimate list of 29 life goals for leading a fulfilling life” by Austin Bollinger on Lifehack. I actually recommend it for literally anyone, especially if you feel stuck. I recently re-read the article and found it so inspiring. I’m also going to do the 100 goals list I suggested to you. The last time I did it, I was much younger and my life was very different. I’m excited to see how my mindset has shifted and what I would like to focus on now! Again, no wrong answers!! 🙂

Post # 6
Member
1067 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 1996

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@laurana1:    What an outstanding post!  I love every word of it!

Post # 7
Member
276 posts
Helper bee

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@kixit:  I don’t think you are being unreasonable to have these feelings. First of all, being a single parent of 3 kids is tough. On top of that you suffered a tremendous loss when your mom passed away. I’m so sorry. It’s no wonder you are feeling destabilized. Now that your daughter is getting older, you are catching a glimpse of what’s ahead – an empty nest. The years leading up to it are very emotional for the mother. You think they will no longer need you, but that is far from the case. I had my son at 19 as well, and at 40 years old I have an empty nest. However, I’m here to tell you the relationship you’ll have with your adult child is nice. They still very much need you, but there’s alot less on your plate. If you’re able to get some grief counseling, please do. The loss of a parent is a deep wound. The first few months after losing a parent is like being in the ICU. You need some additional care. 

Post # 9
Member
9922 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Have you looked into local MeetUp groups? They often have groups for various interests so you could meet others who share similar hobbies. You are not being unreasonable, and I’m sure the pandemic has not helped how you’re feeling. Now that we’re maybe potentially starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel, there will be more opportunities for people to gather in groups like meetup to make new friends. 

Post # 10
Member
276 posts
Helper bee

View original reply
@LovesideoutBrianandShadiaWedds:  Clearly you have no clue what this site is actually about. Although it is called Wedding Bee, it’s a wedding PLUS lifestyle and relationship site. If you look at the tabs this very site has to offer, you may notice there’s Wedding Related, Life, Love & Marriage, Nesting, Style & Beauty, etc. When you create your own post, Wedding Bee offers you many forums to post to – Wellness, Fitness, Legal, Career, Travel, Cooking. The list goes on. Your constant posts about what a person should be posting about is getting very old. 

Post # 11
Member
3869 posts
Honey bee

View original reply
@bluebonnetbee:  Don’t bother – this person is clearly a troll, and not a very good one. I suspect this is a bee that was banned previously, and this is her way of “getting back” at Weddingbee < eyeroll >

Post # 12
Member
2034 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

View original reply
@LovesideoutBrianandShadiaWedds:  Apparently the mods “talk” with you didn’t stick.  While this is a wedding website, weddings are simply ONE subject discussed here.  There are multiple boards on this site some of which have NOTHING to do with weddings. 

Since you don’t own this site, don’t run this site and definitely don’t moderate it how about you let those that DO direct posters to where they need to go. 

Your opinion on how or where someone should post is nonsensical and unwanted!   

Post # 14
Member
925 posts
Busy bee

I think it makes total sense you’re feeling some confusion. Youve been a parent for your entire adult life and don’t really know what an adult you looks like without kids.

And you may be feeling some jealousy about your daughter because she’s not that much younger than you were when you became a parent. So, now that you’re nearing a time when your kids are less demanding, you’re starting to remember what that freedom felt like. 

You’re entering a new phase of your life, embrace it! It’s time to find out more about the adult-you that isn’t just a parent. (though I’m very sorry about the loss of your mother)

Pick up some hobbies or take classes. It’s a great way to meet people and do some self-discovery. I find adult friendships are easiest to maintain when they’re linked to an activity you want to do regularly. Otherwise you wind up putting it off until you’re less busy (which is usually never).

What kind of things are you interested in? Bees may have some good activity/hobby suggestions for you. 

Post # 15
Member
925 posts
Busy bee

Also, you don’t HAVE to do online dating, but it might be worth a try. Men don’t approach women in public as often these days because online dating is easier/more accessible. You can also ease into it.

Try out making a profile and chatting with a few matches, you don’t have to launch yourself into a whack of first dates right away. I used online dating for an accumulative 6mos-1yr and only went on 4ish dates? But it made me feel like I was ‘out there’ a bit more, which helped my confidence.

(But there’s no rush, especially if you’re still grieving your mother. That’s a terrible loss.)

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