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I CONFESS: Lonely spinster seems to be my destiny

Barbados Nation

I CONFESS: Lonely spinster seems to be my destiny

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NOT LONG AGO I left a relationship about which I feel I should share a few of the details as it was an experience I had never encountered previously.

I am a professional woman in my mid-40s with a relatively safe job even in these turbulent times. I have been able to accumulate many of the material things often associated with success in life: I have a relatively nice house, even if it is still mortgaged to a financial institution, live in a nice district and have a modern vehicle.

I am able, at least once annually, to travel on holiday and sometimes get the opportunity to do so on work-related matters. I am well read and have a good education by our standards, holding both a university degree and professional qualifications.

Developing my career path has been my primary objective as I wanted independence. Unfortunately, I never developed a sustained relationship. The truth is that I had a short-lived marriage – we were both attracted to each other, and perhaps did love one another, but were driven even more by individual pursuits of success.

Bliss rubbed off

The sharing of a growing family clearly was not on our radar. So the bliss of the union quickly rubbed off and our interests and desires became total opposites. The marriage broke down beyond repair. I cried, sought legal help, went to court and moved on. It was three interesting years and I have put that all behind me.

That was 20 years ago, and I am not yet 50. So I had a lot of life to live and felt that, like some of my girlfriends, I could focus on getting ahead and the right fellow would come along, sooner rather than later.

Big let-downs

Perhaps, because I am picky, that right fellow still has not come along, and in the intervening period many of the guys I have dated have turned out to be big let-downs. I have always felt that because of my status, whether based on financial standing, where I live, my job and the people I associate with, I have been rather discerning in the men I have dated. I must admit this has perhaps been my biggest failing.

I say that because my sister, who also received a good education and is well certified, has had a different approach and attitude. She has opted to become a public officer, and perhaps will never become a high-salaried earner. She has married a guy who is a schoolteacher, who will not become a high income earner either. He is quite satisfied with his life and while they have a modest but nice home, they have put emphasis on family. They struggle but are making it. We are two years apart in age, she being younger, and she can feel proud of being married for 20 years with two lovely children.

I have no children, so I must dote on my nieces and nephews. I have been in relationships with successful professional men, who outwardly appear to be what I desire. Unfortunately, they are often found to be strange, dishonest men who have no moral compass guiding their lives.

The point on which I started has to do with a well spoken, successful man I was recently dating, who is exactly one year older than me. We were seeing each other for two years, even if not very steadily. We became intimate during the relationship, but one thing that disgusted me was that every time we were going to have sex he would have to pleasure himself beforehand.

Came to a head

Things came to a head earlier this year. During Crop Over I went out immediately after work and had a few drinks with some of my girlfriends at a company-sponsored event. As I felt tipsy and did not want to drive, I called him to pick me up. He came and collected me and we went to my house.

I showered and went on the sofa with him. But he said he could not continue, instead giving me an ultimatum on the sex acts I had to perform on him before what he said would be “the real thing”.

This was not the first, second, third or fourth time he had done that.

Prior to that I had a relationship with a man, again quite a successful guy who, after an intimate session, would proceed to let off gas – and he believed that he should do so while I was cuddled up to him. Then there was this other guy who insisted that his dog, a rather cute miniature Akita, had to sleep in his bedroom and be present at night while he was having any intimate relationship.

Perhaps I am meant to be a lonely spinster. What I have come to realise is that we women must not simply look at men who are well educated or own a business or have successful careers. I consider all men to be the same: tricky liars, who, where they can get away with it, are “looking for free milk”. Perhaps, those like my brother, in a steady relationship but known to have another woman, are no different from those whom we feel to be a cut above the rest.

The professional woman must not look down in the gutter but must be cautious in rejecting that fellow with whom she can grow. That was my mistake, and today I am fretful, confused and lonely.