How Long Should She Hold Out For Her Dream Guy?


Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): Rose

Comment: Hi Moxie,

I’m a late bloomer who has enjoyed being single, but finally (in the past 3 to 4 years) truly desires a full fledged intimacy with the right man and would like to try for a small family (I froze my eggs four years ago in hopes of increasing the chances of being able to be a biological mother, and my doctor told me he was “optimistic” one healthy baby is a realistic possibility for me).

Being that I am also a late bloomer in the work realm, the past several years have been intense ones as far as career building. I finally have a stable stream of income (I’m an artist and teacher), a great apartment, and am in the best physical shape of my life.

When I was younger (up till my mid-30’s, I’d say) I had a bit of a reputation for being a heart breaker and always was juggling a bunch of guys (I know that may sound obnoxious but I’m trying to be honest). Many of them I didn’t sleep with, just enjoyed going out on dates with. Speaking of which, I always let them know I wasn’t ready to settle down and was transparent about that (naturally, since I didn’t want anything serious, back then they wouldn’t leave me alone!) I think if I’d fallen head over heels for someone I thought was fabulous when I was younger, I might have married (and I believed that at the time), but short of the blinding, once-in-a-lifetime passion of true love (along with having a sense I trust and respect this man), I wasn’t ready. Anyway, during those years, I was with several men who wanted to get married (was almost engaged once; we were discussing it) but I didn’t move forward.

I guess you know where this is headed. Now that I am ready, not just because of my age (I’m 44), but because of work I’ve done on myself–introspecting about my own boundaries issues, my own deep-seated fears about intimacy related to my family of origin, which though loving had weathered a tragedy and could be smothering–I have begun to feel the yearning for a true partner in life. I no longer need or even strongly desire the attention of multiple suitors (I admit I still enjoy men’s attention. What woman doesn’t? But the thrill of admiring glances, and the even greater thrill of total freedom in life, have finally begun to wane in comparison to the longing for intimacy, stability, a true partnership in love, and yes, a potential father to a child).

Please forgive the lengthy background. Now the problem: I seem to attract two types of men. The first, young (20-something) admirers who see an attractive, fit (I’m a yoga instructor as well) older woman and want experience. We all know what that will get me, right? Though recently I have been spending time with a man who is 20 years younger who is smart, sincere (we went together to get tested for STDs and he made it there early with a smile on his face) and lovely. He is truly the kind of man I would marry at this point if he were available for husband- and fatherhood, but of course he is nowhere near ready (he is planning to move to another country soon). So, after two years of concerted effort on my part to attend singles mixers, online dating, go out with guys in my social network who approach me, etc. and coming up with bubkes (in Yiddish, that means nothing), I’ve decided to take a couple months and just enjoy myself with this young man, whom I’ll call Isaac, before he

Meanwhile, while the plethora of bachelors lining up to date me has thinned (along with their hair!), I still occasionally get approached by an attractive man my own age give or take a few years. I jump at the chance to go out with these fellows, hoping each time that the two of us, having gone through the ups and downs and wrong turns and surmounted the fears, will have come out the other end ready for the true–albeit imperfect, yet satisfying and passionate–love that I still believe is out there for us 40-somethings! In fact, lest you think I am some vampire obsessed with youth, in the past few years my appreciation has grown for men my own age, for their tummies and crows’ feet (the latter of which I have too and think of as a badge of honor and a kind of “real” feature of the type described in the children’s book, “The Velveteen Rabbit,” which I also love and which celebrates love that is real …)

The trouble is, these guys seem to either 1) disappear on me after 3 or so dates or 2) we get into a relationship, as was the case with my last boyfriend (we were together a couple years ago for almost a year). But after a passionate beginning I soon learned his life was so over scheduled (he was a real estate exec and very philanthropic) he would book up his weekends, and often in the evenings he was too tired to have sex, snuggle, talk, etc… All the things I am finally READY to enjoy with the right partner.

It’s like, now that this late bloomer has achieved the emotional maturity to truly want to share — my well-maintained body, apartment, and life — the men in my age range either don’t want me or can’t keep up with me. And the younger men – including lovely Isaac who cares about me as a friend (I wouldn’t be interested in even spending time with him otherwise) are just too young and not ready for what I am ready for ….

To further complicate things (and I’m coming to conclusion here, promise!) I’m sensitive, and I don’t want to have sex with anyone I don’t know pretty well, or if I don’t feel the man cares about me and me about him.  Over the past few weeks I went on a series of four dates with a man my age I was excited about. Twice divorced, Type A (which has always attracted me) and successful, but (or so I thought anyway) reasonably emotionally intelligent, which is also important to me. We were having a pretty good time, I thought, but on the fourth date, after making out for a while, he started touching me, and something felt a bit off. (I like a very gentle touch for a good while to start while making love, and his touch was a bit more vigorous and was hurting me. I find this is the kind of thing you can tell a lover but is hard to talk about to someone you don’t know pretty well/trust, etc., which is another reason sex on the fourth date feels fast for me but I was pushing myself). So
anyway, I know there’s no point in suffering in silence and I told him, “Sweetie, it’s hurting,” and his reaction was impatient, like, “Whatttt???” It’s HURTING?” (as if I’m a freak or something). My young lover would not do that (take an impatient tone while making love); in contrast, he is enthusiastic and patient and sweet). I mention this because it is a microcosm of the dilemma I have: I am a deeply sensitive woman who has a great deal to give, and who needs a lot too in terms of patience and understanding from a lover. I am also full of energy … and overall, I find that I am more compatible with younger men, but they are not ready for what I so ardently desire: intimacy with stability and a family.

Where are the men in their 40’s who are not jaded, do not have severe sexual dysfunction (I am not looking for perfection and do not need a perfect performance every time), just a man who can sustain an erection (I’m a giving lover too, btw), who wants emotional and physical intimacy on a regular basis and carves out time for it enthusiastically, and who still has the ENERGY to take his time making love to his woman with tenderness and sensuality after a hard day at the office. AND who wants to try for a baby.

Where is he Moxie? Honestly, am I expecting too much?

Should I ask Isaac to come with me to the sperm bank before he leaves on a jet plane next month?

Or should I give it one (or a few?) more years of opening my heart, making a concerted effort, and hoping the right age appropriate man and I find each other?

With gratitude for any advice,

Late Bloomin’ Rose

PS–I am a new reader and really love your column’s honesty … I think you really have the pulse of our unique, fast-changing time and place, and so felt you would be the only advice columnist whose insights might actually help.
Age: 44
City: New York
State: NY


There’s a whole lot to unpack here.  I’m going to keep it brief because the length of your letter alone is going to make people skim or skip completely just so they can jump into the comments and get self-righteous.

You’ve crafted a compelling but cliched narrative for yourself. Woman in her forties who was too busy building her career and working on her trust/intimacy issues finally sees the light and decides she’s ready for true love.

Only, you’re not.

Dude, I honestly can’t begin to analyze all this. Not because it’s just too difficult or because you’re some unique case but because you come off so profoundly self-obsessed and self-involved that I don’t care to. To be honest, I nearly bailed on three separate occasions while reading this and by the end I kinda hated you.

I’m sorry to ruin the ending to your fantasy but you don’t want a relationship. You don’t. You’re another person in their mid-forties with warped expectations who dicked around for the majority of their adult life and suddenly remembered they forgot to get married and have a family who has deluded themselves into believing that they haven’t aged or changed like everybody else.The fact that almost every guy in your age range bails after 3 dates should tell you that something is off. There are plenty of men out there your age and a few years older who are everything you’re looking for. But you don’t want those men. You’re too vibrant, too “full of energy” to deign to date men who can’t keep up with you. You don’t seem to understand that those Type A guys are in full demand. You can not compete with what the vast majority of women they date can offer.

If you really wanted a baby, you would have had those eggs fertilized and implanted years ago. That’s what women who know – without a shred of doubt – that they want children do. They don’t care if they have to raise the baby alone. They do whatever it is they have to do to create that life. You, on the other hand, have been waiting for your Type A Prince Charming to come along.

Hey, guess what? He’s not coming. That forty-something guy who wants kids isn’t choosing you because he doesn’t have to. He got a plethora of women 5-10 years younger than you interested in dating him.

You’re no different than Dater X, the Frisky columnist we deconstruct here each week. You talk of longings and pangs, but then you turn around and you do the exact opposite of what you should be doing if in fact you truly wanted a relationship. That’s commonly referred to as cognitive dissonance. Your thoughts and actions do not align. The goal for you right now is to get those two intentions to match up.

Something in your narrative has to give. Either you’re going to have to lower your expectations and slum it with the Type B guys or you’re going to have to kiss your dreams of being a Mommy goodbye. Or you’re just going to have to choose the single mom route. At this point, doing nothing is only going to make you fall further behind.




Sometimes the love of your life is the love of your life. (R)


One on One Dating Profile Review

Get a 45 minute one on one review of your profile with me.  I’ll go over your picture selection and ad text and let you know if your profile includes any buzz words or red flags. I’ll also help you tweak/write your profile if it needs some freshening up.


  • *Profile analysis (45 minute phone session.)
  • *Assistance with editing and re-writes.
  • *Photo selection and review.
  • *Feedback about specific issues and experiences.
  • *Site selections  and Pros & Cons of the more popular dating sites.
  • *Overview of online dating basics – how to write intro messages, how to draw more attention to your profile, how to sort your searches so you can see profiles you might be missing.

$55 (Use code BLOG to save $10)


Eventbrite - Master & OKCupid

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
, , ,

61 Responses to “How Long Should She Hold Out For Her Dream Guy?”

  1. AV Says:

    Well, there are definitely some red flags here.

    “reputation for being a heart breaker and always was juggling a bunch of guys…Many of them I didn’t sleep with, just enjoyed going out on dates with”

    “disappear on me after 3 or so dates ”

    By their 30s most men can easily spot a woman who has a habit of stringing them along for free drinks. This is probably why they are leaving so quickly. That, and the “As” she wants are in high demand and short supply.

    “I finally have a stable stream of income (I’m an artist and teacher)”

    “Finally?” And how long did it take you to get that? Getting a stable paycheck is not really that hard to do; it may be harder to get one of a certain size or in a certain profession, but actually holding down a job is easy. if you had difficulty doing that, then why should a man think that you are responsible enough to take care of a child?

    “I am a deeply sensitive woman who has a great deal to give, and who needs a lot too in terms of patience and understanding from a lover.”

    I.e. “high maintenance.”

    As for babies….well, sorry that’s probably not going to happen. At 44, with 40 year old frozen eggs, the chances are extremely slim. Plus, as an artist and teacher do you even have the money for the required treatments? That can’t be cheap. Keep in mind too that raising children is exhausting. And on top of that, most men in their mid-40s to early-50s aren’t interested in having children because they’ve already done that, or because they realize that in middle-age they don’t have the energy for it.

    Keep on looking for love, but do it with realistic expectations.

  2. SS Says:

    I’ve only tried to date 40s and 50s and EVERY single one of them told me they did not want kids: either they had them already and were done. Or they didn’t have any for a reason.

    Therefore I just cannot see you finding a man to sire a child with you.

    HOWEVER – I’ve often heard of men dating single mothers.

    So which is more important?

    If having a child is more important – then go do that yourself. And in time you’ll find a man that’s ok with you having a toddler in the house.

    If having a man is more important – you’re likely to have to give up on your dreams of motherhood.

    I’d personally believe *thats* the paramount dilemma you face before any others.

  3. Ben Iyyar Says:

    ATWYS remarks, “you come off so profoundly self-obsessed and self-involved” which is how I felt just a few moments after I tried and failed to finish reading the letter. My impression was that this person has an unrealistic idea of what they demand from a partner and what they bring to any relationship. The writer seems to think other people are there to meet their needs, and that all they must do is wait for the right person to pluck them off the tree of Paradise where they reside. The fact is that sober and responsible single middle aged men want younger women for partners as well as for the goal of raising a family, and this has not changed lately. This woman can have all the sterling qualities she claims but she may have to share them with a far less than perfect partner, although she comes across as unwilling to compromise. I would only add that should she decide to have a child as a single mother, it will be tough financially for her, really emotionally and psychologically hard on the child, kid who desperately need responsible and hard working fathers to help raise them and to teach them how to be decent men and women. We all make bad choices, but why make your own desire for a child be fulfilled by an innocent child who will almost certainly suffer in the future.

    • SS Says:

      I don’t have children so I don’t have a dog in this fight, but the line:

      “really emotionally and psychologically hard on the child”

      seemed really disrespectful to all the amazing single mothers (and fathers) out there giving their all to raising happy healthy fulfilled offspring.

      I believe it’s far more advantageous for a child to be raised by one competent parent than live in a war zone or be subjected to dysfunction of any kind.

      • Ben Iyyar Says:

        If you think raising a kid alone is easy ask around a bit, Because plainly you have neither seen the tragic results of kids raised by a single parent. It is sadly true that divorce has led to this awful situation, but I was talking about a single woman, not divorced having a kid for her own needs. Divorce sometimes cannot be avoided, but the deliberate choice by an unmarried woman of simply having a child can be avoided. And remember that there will more men in the ladies life, and for a child to occasionally raised by “Uncle” Dave or “Uncle ” Charlie just confuses and angers them. My wife and I have four children, grown up now, and it took two incomes to just keep us housed and fed. Perhaps some women manage to raise a child and support both of them on her own, but most of them are Hollywood stars and the au pair is probably raising the kids!

        • Maria Says:

          Ben. This is just ridiculous. There are plenty of single parent families who are doing great job and are not Hollywood stars. Of course it’s easier in some countries than others, for example Sweden where child care and support for single mothers is brilliant. US is not Sweden of course but it’s not the worst country either for raising a child alone.

          There has been a recent study that found that children raised in a single parent family where a mother made a conscious decision to be a single mother do as well as children raised by two parents.

          These results confirmed my thoughts that women often do better parenting without all that mind fuckery in their life which unfortunately comes too often as part of of being in a relationship (sorry men). And without stress and expense of divorce or separation.

          • Ben Iyyar Says:

            Do you hear yourself, most single parent families are always in poverty, and the kids get neglected, those are facts and all the good will in the world won’t change them!

            • bbdawg Says:

              There is a difference between being a single mom and having a child completely alone. I don’t think this is doable in the US/New York/Upper Middle class expectation bracket – you will go from me-me-me upscale brunches to having no life other than looking after your child. Do you have extra 50-60k a year to pay for a nanny and other expenses? Are you a business owner in the sense that you can create your schedule? Do you have enough energy to run after and entertain a child after a long day, and do that every single day at least 10-13 years? With no one else to help you?

              When I was dating at 34 some guy I met asked me if I wanted to be a single mom if I didn’t find the “right person”. My answer was “hell no, no way”. Then he told me he had a few friends who decided to adopt/have a baby anyway and regretted it bitterly because having a child is incredibly difficult and doing that without a partner means you NEVER get a break.

              • fuzzilla Says:

                If a woman chooses to raise a kid by herself she can do so successfully, if she wants it bad enough, if she’s really thought it through, has emotional and practical backup in the form of a network of people to babysit, has the income to pull it off. People (including me) are down voting the idea that it’s 100% impossible for that to ever work out well. That’s a rather obnoxious assumption to make.

                The obstacles you mention are very real things, though, and OP doesn’t seem to have a strong enough game plan to pull it off.

            • Maria Says:

              Having such a narrow minded guy for a father can have very negative effects too Ben. Poverty is not the cause of psychological problems, dysfunction is. I know plenty of poor people who save every month, make most of what they have and give a lot in terms of life skills to their kids. There are on the other hands entitled little brats who had everything done for them who find that they can’t function in the adult world. Or those who had a father who could not connect to them emotionally but felt good about himself because HE PROVIDED for them.

              • Maria Says:

                Ben you just sound so threatened by the idea that a woman can dare and be completely independent and get things done without a man’s help. What about those countless single women who lost millions of husbands in ww2 and went on to bring up their children by themselves?
                Having a child outside relationships removes certain pressures too. Not having to worry about shifting extra weight what a bliss! No pressure to look perfect and sexy for your husband who OMG may get upset. I know so many couples where a guy left within 2 years after the birth of the child. Why? He just couldn’t get his head round about what happened to his wife, no one prepared him off the physiological,psychological and hormonal changes that will happened to his wife after having a baby. And the wife often is the one who breathes a sigh of relief when he is gone. Two parents does not automatically equal great or well to do parents and the husband is sometimes is a source of stress not support.

                • Late Bloomin Rose Says:

                  Hi folks,

                  Thanks for your feedback. Thanks especially to commenters who are supportive of the single motherhood idea. I must say, I’m a little surprised by the harshly judgmental tone of some comments. Funny isn’t it, how on one hand I am being derided for allegedly sounding self-involved (it’s pretty difficult to write about yourself without sounding self-involved) for holding our for love, and on the other hand condemned for daring to consider single motherhood. It seems we single women past a certain age are often society’s favorite whipping gals. But I’m not gonna take it laying down.
                  1) Moxie, thanks very much for publishing my letter. But you’re dead wrong about one thing this time. I do want a relationship. 2) Please keep in mind that I can’t include every detail of my past and my family’s past, but I can assure you there are many valid reasons I was not ready when I was younger that do not spring from self-involvement, but from the opposite and 3) While I appreciate you need to keep the writing snappy and you do, do you think it helpful or wise to make sweeping statements about what is or is not going to happen in people’s lives? Last I checked, you aren’t God.
                  Anyway, I did ask for your honest feedback and appreciate it. You think my soulmate ain’t coming. You can only be honest, right? But you didn’t really address the central dilemma I posed and seem not to have read my letter too carefully. You wrote, “The fact that almost every guy in your age range bails after 3 dates should tell you that something is off.” But that isn’t true. Some bail after three dates. But in most cases, they start falling asleep on my couch with regularity and saying things like “”I’m gettin’ old.” Have you not experienced this?
                  With respect, I think it is your response that’s a little cliched, Moxie. Because I intend- and do – live a happy life as a single woman, you assert I don’t want a relationship, which is simply not true. You seem to be parroting society’s tired prejudice against women who haven’t settled into – or settled for – less than stellar relationships in the decades of life that society tells women they are most desirable. But I do want a relationship and a family, and I refuse to fall into the “poor single woman in her 40’s is going to wind up alone trap” or to blame myself for not settling down – or settling – when I was younger. That’s just unhelpful and you are normally a better writer than that.
                  Fortunately, I know I’m at my best now, and I will find someone great. So for any 40-something readers out there, male or female, don’t buy the negativity that many on this site are peddling. I think there’s some schadenfreude going on here toward those of us who have enjoyed a nice long youth.

                  Re: change, it is always a challenge and a necessity for any type of growth. And believe me folks, none of you has written anything I haven’t accused myself of during my moments of doubt. But for me, the most important change is to move away from doubting myself and toward more faith that with the right attitude and ability to take risks, I can be positive and find much of what I seek. I believe he is out there. and if he isn’t, I know I can become a mother, either biologically or through adopting. All the negativity in the world – while it may sting for a minute – is not going to eat away at my confidence or even wreck my day.
                  And THAT is why I am a better catch now than I was in my 20’s – I have weathered some of life’s storms, and I know I do not have to internalize everything everyone else thinks about me. I have higher self-esteem, and more stable, and am more ready to give. It’s also why I’d make a better mother now than I would have in my 20’s. And it is why, now that I think about it, I am right on schedule – for me.
                  So thanks, folks, for reminding me who I am. And thanks again to commenters for your positive defense of single motherhood.
                  Late Bloomin’ Rose

                  • Parenting Says:

                    Ben isnt wrong nor a mysogenist. Have you really investigated what it will take to be a single mom to an infant/toddler/preschooler?

                    About $1200 per month for day care, $500 per month to fund a reasonable college savings plan. Thats a second rent check and you havent even taken into account the cost of maternity leave, medical care, feeding, diapering, clothing the kid and all the basic expensive crap like stroller, car seat, crib, etc… Then there are the questions bbdawg raised such as are you prepared to come home from work exhausted and give your evening to caring for and entertianing a child rather than resting? And what is your plan for taking care of the baby if you are very sick or have a migraine or need a trip to the ER?

                    Yes, a lot of single mothers exist and some do a great job and many of the single parents Ive known had a lot of help from their family, their ex and their former in-laws who were always happy to take the child for the weekend. If you moved closer to your family, would they help you raise your child? Are you willinv to do that? Can you find work there?

                    I asked myself a lot of these questions before realizing I cant do it on my own because I dont have the support needed to raise a very young child. Being independent and empowered is pretty easy when the only one you are taking care of is you.

            • Isambard Says:

              And where did you get this authoritative statistic?

        • SS Says:

          1. A list of tragic worthless kids raised by single mothers:

          Poor Barack – he’ll never make anything of himself….

          2. You seem to assume that many women have a *choice* in whether to be a single parent – I believe you assume incorrectly. It seems ridiculously unfair to judge people not afforded the same opportunities and benefits that you enjoyed.

          3. “And remember that there will more men in the ladies life”

          Wow. So all single women are easy hoes with no boundaries huh? I … just… smh

          4. And finally, I was raised by 2 parents in an affluent household. The reason why I’m on this blog is because my childhood was so dysfunctional I still struggle with romantic relationships at times. I would trade my experience for being raised in poverty by a single mother (or father) in a heartbeat. I’ve met many many people over the years who believe the same.

          • E-B Says:

            Ever hear of the phrase “exemptions that prove the rule?” That means that there are cases that contradict the majority of findings, but that does not mean the overall trend is wrong.

            Just look at the data compiled by social scientists:
            “boys raised in a single-parent household were more than twice as likely to be incarcerated, compared with boys raised in an intact, married home, even after controlling for differences in parental income, education, race, and ethnicity.”
            “about one-third of girls whose fathers left the home before they turned 6 ended up pregnant as teenagers, compared with just 5 percent of girls whose fathers were there throughout their childhood”


            In summary, the majority of children from a single parent home will grow up without any problems, and there is no way to say if any individual child will be better off if because had one or two parents; however, across a population as a whole, a greater percentage of children with only one parent will have problems compared to children who had two parents.

            • SS Says:

              No argument there.

              However, to reiterate my original points:

              I vehemently challenge the notion that the ONLY result will be “tragic” and all children in such circumstances automatically “suffer.”

            • Jesse Says:

              Hey Honey: you keep looking for what you want. There’s plenty of 40 year old men who have what you need and would love to have you. Maybe not in Manhattan, but they are out there. Maybe it’s just that you aren’t looking in the right places for your sporty, in shape, young at heart 40 year old men. Hint: swimmers and tennis players yes; golfers and poker players, not so much. Professional athletes, race car drivers and polo players — sorry, they’re looking for much younger

            • Isambard Says:

              Don’t be tossing around “data compiled” statements with no back-up, references, or supporting information. Nothing wrong with Slate, but it’s one source.

  4. BostonRobin Says:

    The idea that this raging narcissist would ever subject an innocent child to her mommy fantasy terrifies me. That’s what had me screaming “no no no” more than anything. And there was a LOT that had me screaming here!

  5. Greg Figueroa Says:

    She doesn’t want guys her own age.

    Relationships and getting old scares her.

    • Greg Figueroa Says:

      Don’t ask Isaac for his sperm.

    • fuzzilla Says:

      And that’s fine, but that’s rather at odds with wanting to have and raise a kid. Do it without a man if you want a kid bad enough, but…yeah, there’s not really much advice to give someone who’s essentially like, “How can I get what I want without changing or compromising on a single thing? And why don’t I have it already?”

  6. Donnie K Says:

    “If you really wanted a baby, you would have had those eggs fertilized and implanted years ago. That’s what women who know – without a shred of doubt – that they want children do. They don’t care if they have to raise the baby alone. They do whatever it is they have to do to create that life.”

    This. More often than not, they do it before turning 40. An ex-girlfriend and woman I dated for two months went this exact route because having a children was their priority. It was the best decision they ever made.

    As one of the self-righteous readers who skimmed this letter, I have to agree with Moxie’s main points. Yoga instructor or not, the LW’s story is all too common. She talks herself up in predicable ways and belittles the men her age she’s “grown to love” despite their bulging “tummies”, thinning hair, crowds feet, and GASP! sexual dysfunction (they make pills for this ya know.)

    If this attitude comes across to me on dates, no wonder they bail after three — especially if sex hasn’t happened. It’s okay to have a high opinion of yourself. When it interferes with your ability to attract members of the opposite sex, it’s time to reevaluate.

  7. Nia Says:

    I agree that I think it’s best to get clarity on what you want–your “bottom line”. Is it a child? Is it a man? Yes, there’s a possibility for both, but the odds get longer each year. Men who are older (your best market) likely either have had their families already or have made peace with their choice to remain child-free. I think the divorced dad market is where it’s at for you. If you want a family, it might be time to accept that maybe it means a “just add water” family where you’re stepping into an already existing family group.

    Honestly, it’s not that much of a sacrifice. You get the warm family dinners, the special moments, the bonding, the sense of wholeness, the feeling that you’re doing something worthwhile and lasting, and a lot of fun, as well as the lessons and growth that come with putting someone else’s needs before your own. That’s family.

    If you want a man in your life, go younger! (just not 20 years younger). If 40-something or 50- something men are fumbling lovers or not sensitive to your need, and men in their 30’s are, go with them and find a way to make it work.

    One last piece of advice (and it’s easy to say, hard to follow, I know) just try to love and accept what’s in your life now and stop eagerly looking around the corner for “the next stage.” Life is seasons. There’s a season of love, of marriage, of being alone, of being young, of being older. The season for being a young mother with a loving, perfect husband and adorable toddlers that have the best of both of you has passed. But a lovely season of being a wiser, older woman with a lot to give to a younger man is just beginning. Enjoy it!

  8. Nicki Says:

    I read the entire thing. I can see how Moxie hated the OP by the end. Paragraph after paragraph of how fit and attractive she is, how much she expects from a man, etc. Makes it hard to want to give anybody advice.

  9. John Says:

    As a 44 year old bachelor, I am interested in having children for the first time. But let me be honest: I am certainly not interested in doing this with a 44 year old woman. Even when I was younger, my cut-off age for dating women was 38-40. Back then, I was only interested in women at this upper age because they were eager to have sex with me.

    Sorry if this sounds harsh, but that’s how it is. Right now, I am dating a 34 year old woman interested in starting a family and we are pursuing a serious relationship with that goal in mind.

    • alan Says:

      why all the thumbs down? He is telling it like it is for him. Moxie has been describing this behavior for years. am i missing something?

  10. Dave Says:


    It was a bit of a chore to read your entire post. Moxie said just about everything I was thinking and feeling after reading it so I’ll not beat the dead horse any more there regarding your specific comments.

    Instead, let me show you how I see things from my point of view. Your post reminds me of many women’s profiles I read on dating sites who are into yoga, meditation or some other form of spirituality. But just like the vast majority of them out there…I see absolutely nothing that hints of the life altering benefits that a spiritual or meditative practice can grant us. Specifically compassion, kindness and humility.

    Instead, I see the exact opposite…arrogance, hubris, the princess syndrome…it’s almost like these types use their “spiritual” practice as a cloak to try and hide the fact that they are at heart, selfish assholes. Reminds me of the wonderfully enlightened people at (ass)Whole Foods who always tried to run me over in the parking lot with all of the “Save Tibet!” and “Universal Love!” stickers on their hybrid cars. Gods forbid they actually practice what they preach.

    I saw a profile the other day where the lady (in her late 30s, into yoga and the like) who listed herself as “spiritually mature”. Well please pardon my ignorance, but I’ve been meditating for more than 30 years and I have no idea WTF this is supposed to mean! I think I still have the hand imprint on my forehead…

    Bottom line…if you want more from your life…ie a loving man and a family…try giving more back first. It’s like when people ask me how I lost 100 pounds…but have no sincere desire to put in the work to make it happen…and they all want to know “my secret”. And I can’t help them, because I have no secret. The answer, however, is simple…you have to become someone else.

    The person you are, in this moment, lead you to this place in life. If you want something more…then get ready to jump with both feet onto the Change Train while you can still get a ticket. Otherwise, you’ll still be standing at the ticket booth…wondering the next train is coming.

  11. AnnieNonymous Says:

    It’s absolutely okay to hold out for your dream guy if you’re also okay with the possibility that you might end up alone.

  12. maria Says:

    is it wrong that I am not buying any of this? particularly this?
    “Speaking of which, I always let them know I wasn’t ready to settle down and was transparent about that (naturally, since I didn’t want anything serious, back then they wouldn’t leave me alone!)”

    nobody does such a 180. you don’t go from never wanting a relationship and beating men off with a stick in your mid 30s (a time when most women start to come to terms with the reality of our fertility) to all of a sudden being desperate for a relationship a few years later. as a 34 year old, a lot of the time I feel like that time to have kids is coming to an end, i can’t imagine rejecting perfectly good men who want relationships at this stage in my life, like you claimed to do. I can understand it if i made a decision to be happy being single and to not want children but I just don’t buy any of the OP letter.

    i am not even going to get into your obsession with youth and how you grudgingly accept men aging, as if somehow you didn’t age because you do yoga and may be trimmer than other women. i think that 22 year old you are sleeping with has destroyed the reality of your situation. he is sleeping with you to have sex and to tick off the “had sex with older woman” experience many young men want. I am not saying he isn’t your friend or doesn’t care for you, but he isn’t giving you his sperm or anything that you desire. yup, men you date won’t look like him, just like you don’t look like the 25 year old many men in their 40s date.

    • E-B Says:

      “i think that 22 year old you are sleeping with has destroyed the reality of your situation. he is sleeping with you to have sex and to tick off the “had sex with older woman” experience many young men want.”

      +1000. “Isaac” is visiting the US from a foreign country, and he wanted an “experience” with someone who also serves as a surrogate Mother and caretaker. Need proof? Consider this part: “we went together to get tested for STDs and he made it there early with a smile on his face”. How creepy is that? He is like a little child pleasing Mommy, and then he gets to have sex with her afterward.

      Seriously, if this woman thinks this behavior is not only acceptable but desirable, then she is a first class wack-job. I understand why mature men bail on her.

      • Chris Says:

        Sorry, but that part is the most sane part of the post.

        For different reasons, both age groups, females in their late 30s/early 40s and males in their early 20s have strong sexual fantasies about each other and is far far removed from anything “Mommy” related. These two wouldn’t be the first ones and won’t be the last ones of these age groups to mingle. But he most likely wouldn’t want to donate sperm and end up fathering a child of a woman he once personally knew.

        And getting tested before fucking each others brains out is the right thing to do.

  13. Late Bloomin Rose Says:

    Thanks Annienonymous, for your pithy comment, “It’s absolutely okay to hold out for your dream guy if you’re also okay with the possibility that you might end up alone.”

    On reflection, I guess part of the problem here – and in fairness to Moxie, part of the reason I didn’t like her response – is there is no easy answer in my situation, absent a little (or a lot) of luck. If there were, I’d have settled on it. What I think is unfair and inaccurate is the characterization of me as not wanting a relationship, or being some kind of youth-obsessed narcissist who only wants young guys. It adds insult to injury, and is just not true.

    The irony is, I am much less concerned with chronological age than some of the commenters seem to be who are insisting no family-oriented man my age wants a woman my age. For one thing, if these guys don’t want someone my age, maybe they should quit asking me out. They still do (they aren’t passing up these 44-year-old-bones when it comes to chance to date me and/or try to sleep with me), but when we get there, they tend to be lazy lovers, and to not have an enthusiastic spirit about lovemaking, and I’m not settling for that, as I have a lot to give as well (and this is not narcissism, just healthy self-confidence).

    As I explained, I would love to meet a man in my age range, including even in his 50’s, who has energy and desire for a small family. Of course, we would need to be mutually attractive to each other in terms of internal qualities and appeal to each other physically. After all, just because people hit middle age it doesn’t mean mating is a matter of animal husbandry, or that if you have standards for who appeals to you, you “don’t want a relationship.”

    The reality is, few of us get everything we want in life, and most of us need to compromise. I get it. But I really want a love in my life, and would be honored to have a child, and don’t appreciate being told what I want or don’t. So if you know of any men in their 40’s or 50’s who want a beautiful, sensitive woman who is ready to give as well as to receive love, send ‘em my way. And thanks, Nia, for your beautiful and thoughtful comment. With gratitude, Rose

    • NewEnglandMan Says:

      Late Bloomin Rose,

      You mentioned that you had a hard life early on and it made it hard for you to be able to settle down earlier than now. Have you ever gotten professional help to work through and heal what could have been early life trauma?

      By the way, I really don’t agree with how some people have tried to shame you into more self-awareness, Moxie included. But I agree with other commenters that your focus on how attractive and in shape you are seems to raise some red flags. It seems like a shallow thing to focus on in terms of what is going to attract a quality partner. If you’re very attractive and have relied on that your whole life, then you might feel like you don’t have to provide much else beyond that in order to be a great catch. And that’s the impression that I get.

      If you had some early life trauma that makes it scary to get close to people and be able to build a truly intimate relationship, then I would recommend working on that. Being more compassionate with yourself and building self-compassion rather than just “self-esteem”, would help allow you to be more compassionate with other people as well. If you’re interested in the difference between self-esteem and self-compassion, you could check out this video:

      • fuzzilla Says:

        **be more compassionate with other people as well.**

        Yeah, really. A dude who wants a nap every once in a while is instantly relegated to the undateable trash heap?

        You shouldn’t have to settle for a lazy lover who doesn’t get you off, but going on dates and weeding out the people who don’t work for you is just the normal dating process, no matter your age or relationship goals.

        I have to agree with Moxie that there’s some cognitive dissonance going on. If you want whatever you want, whenever you want it – then fine, stay single, do your thing, go forth and merrily juggle the many and varied lovers you can pull. If you want a relationship, you need to be vulnerable and consider someone’s needs besides your own. That’s the triple truth if you want to have a kid (with or without a man).

        • NewEnglandMan Says:


          I agree, she shouldn’t have to settle for a lazy lover. Part of being vulnerable is asking for what you want/need. Most of us find it hard to ask for what we need in plain simple language. Especially in the bedroom. It’s scary to ask for it. Because your needs could be rejected. Or, you question whether having those needs makes you a good or bad person. You convince yourself that those needs aren’t important to you. Seems like Bloomin Rose has figured out those needs are important, but maybe she’s not asking explicitly and not giving middle aged guys a chance to improve before she moves on.

          • fuzzilla Says:

            I’d wager she repeatedly asks for exactly what she wants in very explicit detail in the bedroom.

            Which is good, but…no, it doesn’t sound like she has realistic expectations for what a middle aged man can bring to the table. And yet she expects suitors to completely overlook her own age.

            • Yvonne Says:

              “I would love to meet a man in my age range, including even in his 50’s, who has energy and desire for a small family”

              Many middle-aged men absolutely want to date women their own age. The problem is, not so many of them want to have kids at that stage. As already mentioned, most that I have dated have already had kids or decided they don’t want them. I would guess that the few who are still looking for that, are focusing on younger women to have them with naturally.

              BTW, the Type A men you’re most interested in don’t seem like a good fit for a sensitive, artsy type like you. I do think that if you’re considering motherhood, you might want to act sooner rather than later. You can do it if you have the resources, but it doesn’t get easier as you get older.

            • SS Says:

              “And yet she expects suitors to completely overlook her own age.”

              Yep. And I have to say it bugs me that she asked for advice… and then updated to say “well I’m going to stick with my original plan anyway.” What’s the point in asking if you’re not going to heed the responses?!!

              • UESider Says:

                She was looking for someone to tell her how special she is and to stick to her (unrealistic) expectations. In other words, she took a wrong turn on the way to XOJane or the Frisky.

    • Mandy Says:

      I think you missed the point completely when talking about how what you need is luck. If you truly want a good man to settle down with you and have a child you don’t need luck, you need to change both yourself and your expectations. That’s not about luck.

      It’s like talking to someone in their 20’s who wants to own a fancy house. Yes, you could loaf around your parents house and play the lottery every day and hope to get lucky and win millions and buy a mansion, OR you can change yourself and your expectations and get a decent job and then buy yourself a decent home. You seem to be committed to doing nothing except hoping to win the lottery.

    • maria Says:

      so you wrote in to get advice from a website you claim to read. you receive said advice. you fight it tooth and nail in the comments and won’t budge on anything, and basically completely ignore everything moxie and everybody is saying here. that’s fine. live your life the way you want to live it. nobody has the right to tell you otherwise. but….you asked. people are telling you that your approach isn’t working but you are basically just saying screw all of you I am gonna do what I want. again, its fine. everybody has to live their own life but clearly something isn’t working for you and you wanted some advice. it hurts but you need to be less defensive and read some of the feedback and take from it what you can.

      and I really don’t think that the comment you singled out was wrong or mean. its just the fact. clearly you aren’t willing to budge, yet you are having a hard time meeting somebody. so fact is fact– you can hold out until you meet a magical energetic fit and beautiful middle aged unicorn man, but the reality for you and everyone is that you just may not find him and end up single. this is advice you need to listen to. I truly and sincerely believe that you are expecting to find an older man that is exactly like your 20 something year old lover and you are ignoring the traits that truly make a good partner and parent: is he patient? is he loving to you? is he kind to you and others? does he listen? does he truly care about you? tossing somebody aside because they aren’t “an energetic lover” whatever that means, is a big mistake. you will NEVER find a man in his middle age that is on the same level sexually as a 20something year old. issac is experimenting with you and is very young so he has more energy than most but understand he is getting experience. rejecting a man who can’t quite keep up to the warped standards a 22 year old set for you is just plain wrong and if you continue this you will 100% remain single. isaac has truly ruined a lot of things for you and completely skewed your perception of the reality of being middle aged. nobody is saying to date a couch potato but you are being incredibly naive and unrealistic. moxie is on point, you don’t want a relationship. you dont’ seem ready for the reality of a relationship and of parenthood since all you seem to care about is the physical aspect of a relationship

    • Fyodor Says:

      “They still do (they aren’t passing up these 44-year-old-bones when it comes to chance to date me and/or try to sleep with me), but when we get there, they tend to be lazy lovers, and to not have an enthusiastic spirit about lovemaking, and I’m not settling for that, as I have a lot to give as well (and this is not narcissism, just healthy self-confidence).”

      What would you think of men who went on about how bad the women they dated were sexually? Or how bad they looked naked? Would you think that this is someone who you would be a good partner and parent?

      “The reality is, few of us get everything we want in life, and most of us need to compromise. I get it. But I really want a love in my life, and would be honored to have a child, and don’t appreciate being told what I want or don’t.”

      I think that the point isn’t whether you “want” love but are totally disconnected from the realities and sacrifices involved in finding someone to start a family with. Particularly when you are trying to do so in your mid-40s.

      • maria Says:

        Yeah i don’t see the connection between find a “generous, active and robust lover” and finding a man who will make a great father and husband. sex is important, no doubt about it, but it seems like she is rejecting men because they aren’t humping her 24/7? not performing specific acts? she’s trying to find what she found in a young and energetic 20 year old who is just trying to learn and experiment with the basics of sex to a man who is a little bit older, smarter and knows a lot more but maybe doesn’t have as much energy as a damn kid just learning how his dick works. none of this has anything to do with what kind of father or husband a man would make. she says nothing at all about the character of the man she wants to meet, just the physical aspects.

        • fuzzilla Says:

          Yeah, it isn’t fair to compare a man her age to someone 20 years younger.

          I also wonder if she can’t connect with anyone else because she’s so smitten with Isaac in particular that she can’t stop comparing long enough to actually get to know anyone else (“Well, ISAAC would get that joke. ISAAC understands how sensitive I am to that Sarah McLachlan save the animals commercial. ISAAC would’ve just KNOWN I wanted be flipped over in bed,” etc.).

          I’ve been on dates with that “you’ll never compare to my ex-” asshole (and I’ve also been that asshole).

    • alan Says:

      howz bout 62?

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      As I explained, I would love to meet a man in my age range, including even in his 50’s, who has energy and desire for a small family.

      Forget about raising the child for a second. Do you have any idea how difficult, time consuming, and physically draining the process of fertilizing and implanting eggs is? Do you know how many attempts many couples have to make just to successfully implant an embryo? You’re talking like all someone has to do is splash a little sperm on your eggs and you’re all set. That process can and usually does take years, and the proicess itself often ends up putting an irreparable strain on a relationship.

      You don’t seem to get it: Guys in your age range don’t have to endure all of that to have a child. What you seek is astronomically far out of the realm of reasonable expectations. And also keep in mind that in a few short years your sex drive is going to be so all over the place that you’re going to wish you got horny regularly.

      My God. Shut. Up.

    • UESider Says:

      Maybe its not that you won’t settle, but that the type of men you desire won’t settle for you.

    • Jesse Says:

      Miss Rose. Nothing wrong with holding out for what your heart wants. Too many people settle, and whine about it later. Then of course there’s the ones who refused to settle and whine about that, but that’s a story for another time.

      Sounds like it could be the problem is in your approach. When you were younger and more beautiful, the guys swarmed to you. Unfortunately that isn’t happening now. Time to roll up your sleeves and do the work to find the guy you want. Go to where the type of man you want spends his time, get involved in the same activities that your type of man is involved in. 90 percent of getting with someone is proximity. You want a Frenchman, learn French and weekend in Paris. You sound like you got the goods. You just aren’t displaying them to the right audience.

  14. Alexa Says:

    I think you lie to yourself too much, and when you start telling yourself the truth, you will find someone suitable.

  15. Late Bloomin Rose Says:

    Hi folks–
    Well, I think this will be my last post here, but I did want to respond a few things.
    @Fuzilla, “It doesn’t sound like she has realistic expectations for what a middle aged man can bring to the table.”
    If expecting sensitivity, some degree of passion, and the ability of a lover to be patient and psychologically present is unrealistic, then I feel bad for the women posting here who are satisfied with less, and fully understand why some women go gay! I do not expect anything I do not bring.
    I do not mind being advised to be realistic and move forward with motherhood sooner than later if I am serious about it, which I’ve explained I am.
    What troubles me in the spirit of some of the comments here, not just for myself but for women in general, is what seems to me like hostility toward an early middle aged woman who simply states that I am not inclined to settle for a less than satisfying sex life. This seems to really bring out the claws in some. @ Fuzilla, I’m not dumping guys for taking a nap. No one’s in the mood all the time, and few, myself included, can just “get it right” without plenty of communication. It’s disturbing to me that some commenters here seem to insist for some unknown reason that I am not concerned with anyone else’s needs than my own or that I have no concept of the sacrifices involved in committed relationships. Maybe I haven’t been clear enough in my own communication. It’s either that or there is so much prejudice toward a single woman past a certain age, especially toward one who is considered attractive by some, that many people jump to the conclusion there must be some terrible character flaw if it hasn’t happened for me, that I must be selfish, unable to understand the sacrifices relationships require, unconcerned with others’ needs, etc.
    So allow me to clarify a few things.
    @Maria, re: “Is he patient? is he loving to you? is he kind to you and others? does he listen? does he truly care about you?” I agree those are the most important traits in a potential partner/parent. But I disagree that those personality traits are so unrelated to what I might justifiably look for in a lover. To clarify: what many men I’ve dated lack, and what Isaac has, is this caring personality and tenderness, and yes, energy. That doesn’t mean he or anyone is always in the mood, or has to be willing to engage in specific acts of sexual gymnastics. Rather, that he is psychologically present, for the most part, when we make love. He is, and so am I. I have not had that luck with men in my age range I’ve been with recently.
    To the commenter who wrote something about how “no wonder the ‘mature’ men dump her:” I have opened my heart to at least one (chronologically) mature man in the recent past, and it turns out he was more interested in pornography than he was in me, even though I would have been ready and willing to share fantasies, please him in bed, etc. (And for those of who who have remarked I am a “raging narcissist” who thinks others exist to orbit me and my needs, Isaac is not complaining of neglect I can assure you).
    I don’t expect Isaac to never feel attraction to other women, but when he is with me, he is focused on me, as I am on him. That’s the kind of love I am hoping for with someone in my age range who is ready for what I am ready for.
    A general piece of feedback for many of you: Telling someone they need to change their entire personality isn’t a very helpful way to help them grow. Think about how you’d feel if that is how someone advised you. Neither is taking a nasty and condescending tone when you’re criticizing someone else’s personality. A little projection, perhaps? Try a little respect.
    @Jesse, I loved your comment and of all that’s been written here, it prompts me most to introspect. Re: swimmers and tennis players rather than racecar drivers and golfers, I think I get your meaning. If something’s gotta give, maybe I can do without the Manhattan lifestyle and/or the country club membership? Word.
    PS–I really love the name Jesse. Funny thing, if I am ever so blessed it is my first choice of name for a boy. Of course, my husband’s wishes will need to be considered as well.
    Thanks, everyone, for commenting. I think overall this has been positive and thanks, Moxie, for publishing me!

    • UESider Says:

      As a mid-40’s man in N.Y.C. All.The.Time. They are generally EXACTLY like you. Worked too hard in their 20’s and 30’s, dated everyone without having a serious relationship, but NOW you are ready to be a Mom and a partner. Oh, but you still want that same type of man you attracted 20 years ago for casual sex.

      If I was sitting across from you at a bar and I found out you have never had a serious relationship and that your most recent dalliance was with a guy in his mid-20’s, I’d nope right out of there. I’m looking for someone more mature, who has been in serious relationships and has the kindness and sensitivity to be my partner and the mother of my child.

      See, you’re not that special. There are lots of women like you out there.
      And you’re single for a reason.

    • maria Says:

      you are so delusional its embarrassing. just understand this, that 20 year old eff buddy does not love you in any romantic way. with your shitty attitude and ridiculous expectations, you will be single for a very long time.

    • Javier Says:

      Your expectations are out of touch with reality. Let me just list just three, or many.

      First, you say you are looking for a successful type A personality who is also psychologically present and attentive. Any successful Type A in their 40s has a lot of things going on in their work and life. For example: working on a difficult business problem, managing large groups of people, being creative on their project. Expecting them to be paying you so much attention is in fact a distraction or an annoyance. They don’t want someone who is emotionally needy, which is how you are coming across.

      Second, of course someone twenty years younger will be able to give you this kind of attention. They are not yet at that stage of their career and life where they are as engaged as 40-year-olds. Between searching for themselves and completing grad school and flipping between jobs, they have plenty of time to turn on the presence and charm to persuade someone like you to have sex with them.

      Third, don’t believe that your ability to attract someone 20 years younger is anything unique. Men in their twenties are seeking a variety of sex partners and sexual experiences. In fact, the older woman, the cougar, the divorcee, the single mom are all types that are more interesting to young men than fucking within their own age group. These women provide more experience and character that makes banging them much more interesting. All my male friends that have had this experience fondly talk about the “hoops” they jumped through for the opportunity of this experience. To them, it was the woman that was the fool because they knew she thought she was using these hoops to qualify the guy’s intentions. A yoga instructor, and a 44 year old at that, is prime on this list: any young male would love to practice a firm penile stretch into a yogi’s vagina while she does kegel exercises on him.

      • Sandra Says:

        I don`t see where she mentioned she wanted or expected a Type A man

        Anyway, dear Rose, it seems to me that if you can financially swing it and have a solid support system, have the baby on your own. You can have dalliances with men you enjoy when you can squeak in the time and keep them as long as they hang around, forget about long term. As a single mother you may have little if any time for that, but you can be in charge Older or younger, just savor the men you want when you can get them and have the energy, if any is left, from rearing a child.

        And yes, I am in agreement about the overt hostility by some commenters.

© 2013-2018 And That's Why You're Single All Rights Reserved