Do You Want To Live Alone?

At 65 years old, women are three times as likely as their same-age male counterparts to be widowed. And, in contrast to men, older women were twice as likely to live alone.

Older widows are usually more content to stay single than older widowers.  They are often tired from looking after their late spouse and they see remarriage as having to take care of somebody else.

Devotion to a deceased husband may also keep them single but they still go through various levels of loneliness.  While the severity and time span depends on the individual, living alone can increase their feelings of depression.

One of the reasons why older widows may stay single could simply be that as they get older there are fewer men to date. Getting used to living alone is hard and acceptance is needed to free a widow to live a new life with new interests.

Living alone or with a new love is a personal choice.  The choice you make doesn’t matter so much as to the reasons why.  Make your choice based on what your heart tells you and not on loneliness or need.

5 Responses

  1. Pat Smith
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    I want to endorse what Mary says here.  Many of my friends are widowed and have taken various paths.  Several have married from loneliness — not wanting to be alone — and regretted it quickly.  Much worse than being alone is finding that you made a mistake and even worse, that this person has no real regard for you, but is plopping down to be supported by you.  It's often  financially a problem, a problem for your own children and his/hers, and what you sought is not what this person has to offer.  A very close friend married mainly because her job's retirement income pretty well vanished and she married someone much more financially strong, but then through downturns in investments, he became not much better off than she.  Then he was ill and needed nursing home care and her income had, by law, to be used for his care, depleting her even further.  Honestly, I haven't known this "marry again so I won't have to live alone" to be a very good motive that works out well. 

  2. Mary Francis
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    Well said – there is a saying “a nurse with a purse” when it comes to a widow marrying later in life.  On the other hand I know several widows that have remarried and have enjoyed a very happy marriage a second time around.  I think the key question is to why you are getting married again – are you in love or just lonely?  If you like yourself and are comfortable with your own company than you are more apt to marry for love.  First, be happy on your own so you won’t be looking to others to fulfill your needs.  Then if you are very fortunate you will find a second love to be just as great as your first love.   Take care, Mary Francis

  3. MissMaggie
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    Since I am a new widow, 67, I might change my mind down the road. At this point I really want to continue to live alone. Maybe have a male friend but I never was very social anyway so why start now? I have been in relationships , my husband for 31 years, and another for 13 years before him. My feelings right now are I am DONE. Loved my husband dearly I really did. But I just do not want to even consider getting into another relationship. I am enjoying my own company. And the company of my animals. I do not want to have to cook for some one any more or do their laundry or have to be concerned with being home at a certain time or not. This might sound like I am a gat-about. Not so. I have not even left my house in over two weeks. And I am ok with this.

    I also know a couple ladies that got into relationships that are not turning out great for them. They are totally stuck now. I want to just be my own person. I have some lonely times once in awhile but usually I am too busy working around here just living my life to be too lonely. I always was independent and my late hubby fostered this in me. I am going to be ok. I just need to get used to doing things alone.

  4. Diane
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    MissMaggie

    I agree with you with almost everything that you have said…except for one thing…don’t stay in your house for two weeks…unless you are ill. Get out to the library…grocery store…garden shop. Just to talk to someone….anyone..small talk about the weather…etc.

    I have been a widow for 5 1/2 years. (Married to the same guy for 40 yrs.) I have friends that I see once in a while. Have my lovely cat. Read a lot and have been declutting…cleaning my house…yard, etc (in my own time). Retired 9 months ago.

    I know that you are a new widow, but it will take time. Take care of yourself.

    Mary Francis has some excellent suggestions and advice here. This is the best website for widows
    Wishing you the best and please be kind to yourself.

    Diane

  5. MissMaggie
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    Right Diane it is better to get out. Except when I wrote that I was snowed in and then some. I have actually been out three times this week and hoping I get to stay home tomorrow. I need a break. LOL Even though I am a new widow I am doing quite well. I have so many projects going on. Things I want to do things I have to do All is good. And many times I do the want to do things first. But who is to tell me no??

    Thank you for your reply.

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