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How do you make yourself happy to be single...

(30 Posts)
missymarmite Sat 27-Aug-11 23:06:09

...when all you yearn for is a stable relationship.

I have been separated permanently from XH for over 6 years. I have had a few failed relationships inbetween, but have been effectively single for a year now (my choice to end the relationship-which I do not regret).

Every time I see a family with both parents, a mother with a baby, a couple in love, I feel such a sence of loss, it is a physical pain. I so want to be in a loving happy relationship with a future. I want the nice house with a husband, a baby, a people carrier, a holiday every year. But it never works out for me that way.

So I want to know this; as I am obviously destined to be alone, how can I make myself happy to be single?

Please don't trot out that old line about "one day it will happen" bla bla bla. I can't stand it. Some people never find the right person. I am afraid I am one of those. I am 18 stone and a size 24, and a lone parent, and poor. I know the odds are against me.

I just want to know how to live with it and be happy.

AllThreeWays Sat 27-Aug-11 23:12:49

I think that neither being single or being in a couple is perfect. But both have their positives.
The main ones for being single re that you can make all your own choices, holiday where you choose, eat what you want for dinner and pick the tv programs etc.

Being in a relationship is hard word, as you have to deal with, forgive and put up with another adults foibles, in addition to the pluses having someone gives.

AllThreeWays Sat 27-Aug-11 23:14:36

^are not re
Oh and the main thing I miss is it being MY house.

jasper Sat 27-Aug-11 23:14:39

read the relationship thread on mumsnet. That'll make you glad to be single confused

toptramp Sat 27-Aug-11 23:25:44

I do know what you mean about the physical pain, envy and longing for that family life op.
I recently lost lots of wieght doing the 30 day shred and low carbs. If I were you op I would work on yourself. If you are happy being the size you are good on you but if not, get excersising and eating well; focus on YOU, YOU YOU! Pamper yourself. It sounds like you are a bit depressed; you need a pep talk lady! Honestly; join the big, slim, whatever forum; it's so supportive. Also doing fitness releases endorphins and targets depression; I walk everywhere as I cannot afford a car or a people carrier (ghastly things imo) but the bonus is that I stay semi fit.Also; are there any hobbies you can take up; even reading a good book?
Try hard not to envy those couples; you never know what goes on behing closed doors. And do please read teh relationship threads; many of those so called happy couples are facing big problems. Enjoy your freedom for now and focus on being the best you can be for YOURSELF and who knows what may follow.

toptramp Sat 27-Aug-11 23:26:32

Oh yeas; enjoy your kids too!

ninah Sat 27-Aug-11 23:29:57

I took the approach advocated in the book 'A bit of a squash and a squeeze' . It's basically about a little old lady who thinks her house is very small, and she is miserable. So she is advised to invite a lot of random animals in, who are variously destructive and take up space. When she finally manages to evict them all the house seems huge and she is very happy.

FabbyChic Sat 27-Aug-11 23:31:11

You have to like yourself, not get bored when you have nothing to do.

It wasn't until I suffered severe depression that I realised I could be alone and never get bored. I like my own space, I like not picking up someone's clothes, having to iron them, it's enough that I do my sons and he goes in 5 weeks to Uni.

Then I won't even have a child at home.

My bf lives a plane ride away, so I shall be at home alone for two weeks at a time. I'm looking forward to it. Doing what I want, when I want. Going to sleep when I want, not getting dressed all weekend if I don't want to.

Eating Cornettos for breakfast if I want to!

msshapelybottom Sun 28-Aug-11 09:36:08

I feel that ache sometimes too. I don't know the answer to this except to say that once I started realising how good my life is now, even though I'm skint, alone, the stress of being a single parent etc, my whole outlook changed.

I don't know what happened to stop me looking backwards and comparing myself to other people, but once I did I felt happier.

I make sure that I do things for myself now, I've discovered weight lifting and it's giving me something to focus on.

It's hard sometimes to be single when there seem to be happy couples everywhere but I bet they all have their problems too smile that's what I tell myself anyway grin

RumourOfAHurricane Sun 28-Aug-11 11:16:08

Message withdrawn

pickgo Sun 28-Aug-11 11:32:22

What is it that you don't like about being single?

BertieBotts Sun 28-Aug-11 11:57:25

I think it's really important to be able to be happy single. It its hard when you see couples and want that, but perhaps if you change your outlook - this work you need to do to be happy on your own is going to help you be more ready when the right person who will enhance your life does come along.

What is it about a relationship that you're really missing? Most things you can find within yourself or from other sources. I'd say the main ones are staving off boredom (especially when you have young kids), company, self-fulfilment, self-sufficiency, and being able to plan for the future without just focusing on "When I meet someone..."

So first I think you need to be busy. Take up a hobby, or start a project, or maybe do some volunteer work or something. Try to make sure you have adult contact at least once a day, even if that's only a text. Most days though, try too meet up with someone or talk on the phone. It's important to be able to have that. I think you probably have to try a bit harder than you otherwise might with friendships, too. Take the initiative to arrange things, or make the first move in a fledgling friendship. Do things which make you feel like you've accomplished things too - DIY is good for this, and however equal you are, it's very empowering to do something which is usually thought of as a man's job! Then the last one is future plans and working towards them. Is there anything you've always wanted to do? Even if it's mad? Travelling, starting a business, moving somewhere, building yourself a little house, keeping chickens, climbing a rock face, advancing your career, getting a mortgage, buying a run down house and doing it up. Any goal, big or small, make plans towards it. Make a ten year plan. Make a twenty year plan! If you break things down into tiny steps, it will start to feel achievable, even on your own. And if someone comes along for the ride, at least you'll know where you're headed.

(and for the sex part, buy yourself a really expensive vibrator. It's cheaper than a date anyway!)

Good luck smile

garlicnutter Sun 28-Aug-11 11:58:51

I used to feel that 'ache' too. Now I'm pretty sure I don't want to live with anybody else again - it's the marvellous discovery of selfishness! smile

Make it a project. Turn your home into a celebration of who YOU are, and DC of course. Admire yourself in the mirror every day (that's called positive affirmation, and it does actually work.) Use positive words when talking and thinking. Look back at some of the things you enjoyed when you were young - art, sewing, gardening, exploring, whatever - and try them out again; see what still clicks for you.

The only specifically "being single" decision I took was to talk to myself blush You might not need to if DC are at a conversational age, but I did it so that I wouldn't lose the habit of minor chit-chat. It works wink

Selfishness rocks!!

gettingeasier Sun 28-Aug-11 14:33:14

I dont think the OP has any DC... and is pining for the happy family scenario ??

SingOut Sun 28-Aug-11 15:10:56

She said she was a lone parent.

gettingeasier Sun 28-Aug-11 15:49:58

Singout thanks talk about blind I even re read the post blush

OP I am so sorry you feel this way and I had a phase after my xh left of yearning for the Disney happy family scenario

One way or another over the last 18 months I have concluded that only a few couples are truly like that and theres so much more to life than being in a relationship

These days aside from my 2 DC I love just being responsible for me my own life and happiness and would not want to be part of a couple again

We are all different though and I do wonder if losing a little weight would boost you and improve your self esteem , I have had / do have weight issues and they do cast a shadow sometimes

brightermornings Sun 28-Aug-11 16:05:15

I think you've had some good advice here. I'm divorced 2 dc's but in a long distance realtionship. This means I too am alone for two weeks which I love. Although I seldom get any time on my own. I've always enjoyed my own company. Are you able to get any dc free time?
You've put lot's of negative things about yourself tell us some positives and don't say there are none I'm sure there are.

breaktime73 Sun 28-Aug-11 16:19:02

Another one here in a long distance relationship. We actually split up 3 weeks ago and although I love DP I felt RELIEVED. Relieved to have my space back, not have someone else telling me what to do and taking control of things (yes he's a bossy sod....but it's also me, I'm controlling and selfish in the spare time I've got and I enjoy it too).

We have agreed temporarily to leave it at long distance and see what happens, so I may well end up single anyway. DP was putting way too much pressure on me to change things I didn't want to change and in the end I refused. He then came back saying he'd agree to live apart for a while, but if he hadn't I'd be single right now. And it may well happen again soon, I'm not holding my breath

DP just can't understand how I can enjoy being alone. He is desperate for company and togetherness at all times. I've never been like that. The only thing I really miss is the sex, talking (when I feel like it...I can't bear to be interrupted if I'm doing something by myself :D) and the fun going out etc. Living with someone for me just isn't that amazing although it can be useful when you have kids :D

I think however that if you have a personality that seeks togetherness, go with it. Bollocks to your weight, plenty of larger women have partners! And why should being poor make you less attractive?!! If you are really tired of dating, make the decision positive, but if you want someone, keep dating. Regardless of bad experiences, it is very likely that you would find someone eventually if you stick with it.

BooBooGlass Sun 28-Aug-11 16:20:36

Is your weight an excuse to stay single? Ar eyou deliberately stayng heavy to stop people getting close?
What is it that being in a relationship gives you that you don't get by yourself? I personally like knowing that I'm self sufficient and am fine in my own company. I think that put me in the best possible place to be as a single person when I met dp. I was a lone parent for 5 years and learned not to need anyone else. I could get along just fine by myself, and that still holds true. I love my dp absolutely. But if push comes to shove, I don't need him. I have friends who go from one relationship to the next and I don't think it's healthy, nor do I understand their desperate need to not be on their own. I do think you need to work on yourself, in both your minset and your body. I very much doubt at size 24 you feel great about yourself. I know I didn;t at a size 20. I took myself to task, got to a size 10 and am a new person, I really am. I wouldn't have wanted to be with me when I was big, not because of the physical size, though I did not look good, but because I was unhappy and it showed.

garlicnutter Sun 28-Aug-11 16:29:28

I know this isn't a S&B thread but - since marmite's weight keeps being mentioned - I really want to stress that feeling better about yourself is a much higher priority than getting thinner. Reason (condensed): If you make yourself feel better by getting thinner, then you're still defining your self-worth by external criteria. That's the kind of shit that makes you feel lonely.

IME, people's body weight starts to self-adjust naturally when they feel good about themselves.

garlicnutter Sun 28-Aug-11 16:30:35

BooBoo and others - didn't mean to put you down over doing things the other way around, btw! blush

BooBooGlass Sun 28-Aug-11 16:31:09

No no I didn;t mean my post to come off that way, though I realise now I read it that it does. You can be happy at a heavier weight I suppose. I just knw that for me personally I wasn't. And the Op mentioned it so I do think it's significant. If you desperately want a relationship, and have identified your weight as a hurdle to that, then do somehting about it.

breaktime73 Sun 28-Aug-11 18:59:16

absolutely garlic. It seems to me that the OP's weight is not the barrier she thinks it is, to a relationship. how many big and beautiful women are happily settled? It is clearly damaging her confidence though.

tbh OP, the only reason I would subject yourself to a big diet right now, is if you'll feel healthier (and to be fair you probably will....hmm). It's a delicate balance between self-punishment and looking after yourself, just for you. Do you really want a man who only goes for you because you are slim, anyway? Such a man would not be worth it imho....

missymarmite Mon 29-Aug-11 11:34:43

Thankyou all for your comments, and sorry I didn't get back to you all earlier.

I have one DS. He was only 2 when his DF and I split up, now he is 8. I had always envisioned him having a brother or sister he could actually play with, and part of my desperation is I can see this possibility fading out of sight. I never wanted an only child, though I see that I am lucky to have been a parent at least once.

Yes, my weight is an issue, in that however much I hate my body it doesn't make me miserable enough to control myself on a permanent basis, just miserable enough to make me seriously unhappy at my low moments. I give up too easily, and I can't see the point of short term weightloss. Lots of excuses, some valid, some not so much so. It is all to do with my self-worth and mental state, being poor doesn't help because it reduces your options and the amount of help/guidance/encouragement/variety of activities etc. Until I get over my hang-ups, I can't control my habits, but until I control my habits, I can't get over my hang-ups! So, at the moment, I just need to be happy with myself and my situation.

I have a long term plan (sort of), but it needs fine tuning. I am gradually working towards a degree in Modern Language Studies with the OU. Problem is, I originally planned to go into teaching, but having working in a secondary school as a TA for 5 years I don't think I am cut out for it. I can't seem to find an alternative career. I try looking, but career advice seems patchy and vague to say the least. I have this general idea that I will somehow get a proper graduate job of some description hmm.

So... I will keep on working towards my career and I will keep on reminding myself that there are good reasons why I ended some of my relationships.

I really need to stop clinging on to the fairytale ideal of the happy family forever. It's just a big fat lie.

saffronwblue Mon 29-Aug-11 11:45:50

I don't think the happy family is a big fat lie. I think it is a big fat list of compromises and accommodations, just like being single is.

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