gonepausal
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Going nonspousal ......

When a guy in his 60’s finds himself unattached for the first time since his 20’s, he is going nonspousal. He begins to appreciate that there are two sides to almost every aspect of going nonspousal. For example, there’s no one to come home to. But there’s also no longer a reason to avoid coming home. There’s no one to help him remember family birthdays. But there’s no one to berate him when, despite the reminder, he forgets anyway. If he’s used to cooking for two, he finds that his favorite recipes go at least twice as far, making leftovers an even more pervasive part of his diet than before. But if he decides to park the surplus in the fridge until molds large enough to devour Carson City develop, there’s no one to point out his wastefulness. Or to ask, “Where the hell is Carson City anyway?” There’s no one expecting at least half of the bed. But, alas, there’s no one spoon against or warmth or more.

Now, if the guy is a guy who actually likes being spousal, going nonspousal brings jitters. Most jitters center around trying to figure out the respousualization process. Okay; call it dating. Dating, when not done for decades, is a skill not easily recaptured. It’s all well and good for Smokey Robinson’s mother to tell us we need to find us a bargain, son, but what if the shopping mall ain’t what it used to be? Besides, it was always easy for mom to issue such pithy advice – she never had to actually pick up the phone and ask a woman for a date. It used to be that a good prelude to that nerve-wracking phone call was a whisper from a friend that, “She likes you.” That helped calm the jitters somewhat. But it wasn’t a lock. You still had to pick up the phone and talk to her. And risk telephonic rejection. Gracefully exiting a phone conversation after she’s told you she’s busy until hell freezes over was never my strong suit. Whimpering was usually the result. But whimpering is unattractive on a man in his 60’s, so senior internet dating was created. Match.com and the like are the new mall where we go to search for our bargains, mom. But it still ain’t easy. It’s still cause for jitters. It’s still not fun to get shot down or be ignored. But now at least they can’t hear the whimpering.

-  anonymous in Rancho Mirage, CA

The Men's Room: "Nonspousal"