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If you started again in your 40s please tell me about it

(14 Posts)
Justwanttomoveon Fri 21-Nov-14 14:07:36

Hi, I split with my ex 9 months ago, he was seeing someone else and although I initially took him back he never stopped seeing her and eventually went back to her. We were together 20 years and have a 4 yo ds with special needs.
Although I don't want him back I do feel quite bitter towards him and her. We have little contact as he has let our ds down so many times I have stopped allowing contact with ds. The ex is taking drugs and drinks heavily and due to ds condition I have major concerns as to his care of ds.
Well that's the back story in a nutshell but I want to move on, I don't want this to ruin my future and I am scared that no one would want to be with me in the future. I was made redundant last year from a job I had for 22 years and I don't have many friends. I would love to hear some positive stories from women who have come back from a divorce/breakup. I just don't know where to start. It's difficult to get back to work as I can only work part time and during term time as I don't have help with my ds. Just want some practical tips for getting a life

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 21-Nov-14 16:03:10

Didn't want your post to go unanswered. Sorry you're having such a bad experience. There are plenty of people who find love in their forties. There are also people like me who discover that what works for them is not a 'long term partner' but something a lot less restrictive. There's a lot to be said for independence, even if it feels strange at the moment. Hope you get a new job soon.

catrin Fri 21-Nov-14 16:38:11

I have recently turned 40. I was married for 15 years before X had an affair. We have 1 dc, who also has SN.

Like you I felt very bitter - still do some days, to be quite honest. But, I have had a couple of relationships with some really lovely men. Quite light, dating type (and one that was more of a FWB thing!). I did not want to rush into anything more serious as I felt that having spent the majority of my adult life with him, I needed to get to know me as a single adult and figure out what I wanted. I am now seeing a really great man, who I am cautiously excited about. There are lots of nice ones out there, despite some of the tales on here!

Give yourself time. 9 months is still very raw. Being a single parent is utterly exhausting, so be kind to yourself. Try and build up your friend network rather than finding a man. If you need emotional support, you may end up putting too much importance on a relationship and then being devastated if it ends.

Is your dc at school yet? If so, could you do a bit of voluntary work at the school or some such to get you out of the house and meeting people? Join the PTA etc.? I know it's hard with no help with childcare, but "not many friends" implies you do have some! Invite someone over on an evening for a glass of wine and a chat?

daisychain01 Fri 21-Nov-14 19:43:54

I was widowed and have gone on to be with a loving DP when I thought life was over for me.

Please remember you are young and life can be full of opportunities with or without a relationship. Take things a day at a time, keep an open mind and see what happens. Nobody can predict the future, being "whatever" age doesn't need to be a barrier to happiness.

Justwanttomoveon Fri 21-Nov-14 20:05:16

Thanks so much for your replies. I am hoping to start an open university degree in February so that should keep me busy for a while (not that I'm not busy with ds already!). It will just give my mind something else to focus on. I do go for lunch with a friend once a month or so and am close to my sisters but they all have lives and I don't want to burden them. I don't necessarily want to get into another relationship, I just want my life to be about more than it is now. Don't get me wrong I absolutely worship my ds but I do need something for me occasionally. I have lost a lot of confidence since the breakup, partly due to the fact that his new girlfriend is 20 years younger than me and partly because I turned 40, have put on a little weight and don't have the money to treat myself ever. With any luck the open university course will lead me to get a decent job and earn some money. My son is at school but it is 40 miles away because of his needs and I drive him to and from school as he is non verbal and until he can tell me any problems I don't feel comfortable having him go by taxi.
Think I'm just having a bad day today and feeling a bit sorry for myself but I'll buck up. Thanks for your replies, its been great to unload a bit.

CariadsDarling Fri 21-Nov-14 20:12:55

Twenty months ago I asked my husband to leave after 36 years of marriage. My youngest child is 23 and has profound special needs, he's the youngest of a large brood of children. Its been very hard even though I wanted the separation for reasons that are private to me and my husband, well private that is in that its not for here or general consumption.

This last few months Ive turned a corner after being shocked at how much I was upset about things, though not upset enough to want to turn the clock back.

Im just getting on with getting on. I've and a few solo holidays that have forced me to get out there and meet new people even if it was to just climb on a bar stool on a cruise and pretend to myself I wasn't faking it till I made it. And it was just about meeting people in general - Im not interested in another romance and not just because me and my husband will never divorce.

I started dance classes.

In May I start a dive course.

Tomorrow I get two new dogs for me and my son to look after together.

I have jumped off boats into the Caribbean and gone snorkelling. It took all my courage and not just because there was a ladder to go down instead of leaping off the side. Im was till then just scared of water in general. On one of the sessions I jumped overboard, cleared my mask and saw 3 sharks directly beneath me having a rest on a large rock. I stayed calm and enjoyed it till others dived in and wanted to see them.

Ive climbed up the side of a series of waterfalls and jumped and swam down them into the most wonderful of cold water grottoes. I even went on a Tarzan rope and let go into water about 15 feet below me.

In May Im doing a historical holiday around Italy - I can't wait. Its only for a week and Im going alone but will be part of a group.

Next September Im doing a cruise to the Arctic - again alone, but truth be told you're never really alone on a cruise unless you want to be and I quite often do.

Ive started Golf lessons with a friend and much to my amazement I love it and now people can laugh at me for playing it the way I laughed at others for years.

Oh, and I started my own business thats doing really well after never having had a job in my life and being a SAHM. Its working out just fine.

Im closer to 57 now than I am 56, and Im happy. I have a lovely family, we spend loads of time together and we are all going to be Ok.

Oh and I spent two weeks in Disney last year with my brother and his wife and went right back to the childhood I never had. It was the best medicine ever even though I scared the bejesus out of myself on the scary rides Ive always been to scared to go on - but Im not scared anymore. smile

Guilianna Fri 21-Nov-14 20:14:43

I was 39. I have definitely started again - retrained and now work as a teacher, doing MA, new location, new friends and busy, mainly happy life. No man in it right now, and to be honest I'm not interested. Much more 'for me' in my life now than when trying to please/compromise with ex. My advice would be take it a step at at time. The degree is a great idea - I started with an NVQ! it gave me a manageable focus, and goals to achieve. I also banned TV in the evenings and wrote instead because I'd always wanted to write a novel. To begin with I did 50 words a day, which is puny, but setting small achievable goals was great for my self esteem and confidence. By being single you are pushed outside your comfort zone and that can be extremely positive and life enhancing (as well as scary, initially).

Guilianna Fri 21-Nov-14 20:16:58

cross posted with you, cariad - that all sounds great! going away alone was a big one for me, too. I absolutely love it!

ravenmum Fri 21-Nov-14 20:19:00

I would suspect that a lot of the women who've found happiness again are no longer looking at this section grin

Justwanttomoveon Fri 21-Nov-14 20:25:35

Cariad, wow, that's amazing, all credit to you.

Guilianna, thanks, you make a lot of sense. I want my life to be full and then if I meet someone, great, if I don't my life will be full enough anyway (does that make sense?). I think once I start studying I'll have less time to wallow and can then can start setting myself some goals.

Thanks agin for your replies

Justwanttomoveon Fri 21-Nov-14 20:27:38

Raven mum, lol, you're probably right smile

Notexactlymarthastewart Fri 21-Nov-14 20:52:14

Hi. XH left me at 41, and now 3.5 years on have sold marital home and moved to great wee house with DD and DS. I'm now 45, been promoted at work, happier than I've been in years, just divorced and enjoying my single parenthood with lovely DP who I am in a LDR with. Life goes on, sometimes better than before...

Will that do? Just focus on what matters to you and your DS, set yourself sensible goals (and maybe some not so sensible ones) and just go for them! Good luck with your studies!

UncrushedParsley Fri 21-Nov-14 21:04:52

I effectively started again at 50. I knew at this stage that there was a good chance I wouldn't meet a Significant Other, but life with XDH had got bad enough that life on my own was preferable. I was married to someone who signed up for Online Dating apparently because I wouldn't go owl watching with him one night.... There were a couple of threads about it at the time. Owl Man quickly moved on and found another victim wife. DD and I carried on, and it was a bit hairy for a while, but things got a lot better. Sometimes I still feel a bit bitter, because I am human, and I have been pooped on, but I am happier. I have a DP of over a year who loves me, and respects me, and life is pretty good. I may well never marry again, or even live with anyone, but that's ok. The Open University is a really good idea. I did a Credit with them, and it was great for meeting intelligent people of both sexes. As your child gets older, you may well have a bit more independence. It does get easier, promise, it just takes time. Good luck!

davejudgement Fri 21-Nov-14 21:14:22

Life begins at 40 grin

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