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Old 08-04-2015, 05:43 PM
 
Location: Downtown Toronto, Ontario
120 posts, read 237,226 times
Reputation: 171

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I was born 2 August 1975 here in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and have lived here all my life - so I know what the original poster is feeling. It's difficult because I sometimes compare my life to what my parents' life was (they married at 17 and just had their 50th anniversary; had twins - my sisters - at 18 and then had me 8-9 years later). I, on the other hand, while I've always been physically active, I've run marathons, work out a lot, do everything physical...haven't really accomplished anything big as far as meeting anyone (I'm gay and I've only met one person in 1996 when I was 21 which lasted a year - since then nothing - the whole stereotype of gay men being promiscuous is a lie and I'm living proof); I never smoked/drank but did get heavily addicted to pain killers when I injured my ACL and achilles tendon, this addiction has gone on for 10 years and is really, really hard to kick. I realized the reasons behind it are just feelings of social death and loneliness...I'll never have kids, it's clear that I'm never meeting anyone, while I graduated from University of Toronto I never had a high-level job and seeing that I've spent much of my life alone I don't have a lot of interest or motivation to do anything extraordinary in terms of career; I'm satisfied with the same job I had when I was 22...even if you have money and nice things when you're alone you still come home to an empty home...so in that regard I feel like, if I'm happy doing what I'm doing, then hang on to that little bit that makes you happy since nothing else seems to. Basically working out is the only thing that keeps me going.

I haven't met many people who've been alone most of their lives and have no shot at having kids and very little chance of meeting anyone for a long term relationship (especially at this point; it would be different if I were 30 but at 40 I've kind of accepted this is the way things are and I'm just not in the mood anymore). I have small things that make me happy and my parents are the only reason why I am here I think and the only reason I stay in this city, I think the hard part about 40 has been that I look around at others my age who only have things to look forward to: kids growing up, marriages and anniversaries, good things happening and all I see in my future are losses. There are no good things I have on my horizon and there's no amount of therapy or medications or group discussion that will change that. That's pretty much what kind of hit me at 40.
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Old 08-05-2015, 11:19 AM
 
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
2,056 posts, read 2,097,853 times
Reputation: 3534
Happy Birthday, 3 days late, Blue Jay (toronto416)!
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Old 08-06-2015, 07:30 PM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
8,775 posts, read 5,028,078 times
Reputation: 22946
Your forties is when you really come into your own. (Maybe that's why society makes turning forty seem so very awful? Wouldn't want all the kiddies to be jealous!)

And I was also born in Chattanooga, 52 years ago. See Rock City! (And Ruby Falls, of course.)
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Old 08-06-2015, 07:54 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
32,168 posts, read 58,616,685 times
Reputation: 35159
My advice is to enjoy being 40, before you know it you will be 50, then 60. Actually, 40 is a good time to make a big change if you are going to, that's when we decided to move from CA to WA and never regretted it. There is still plenty of time to make a new start and still qualify for a retirement or save for when you decide to hang them up and relax. For me 40 was a breeze, 50 a little harder, and I thought 60 would be tough but now looking forward to retiring helps a lot.

In your case, the cost of living on the west coast is a huge factor, but there are affordable places if you don't have to be in or near a big city. Places like Eureka, CA, Coos Bay Oregon, Mt. Vernon WA. I hope you find what you are looking for soon.
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Old 08-08-2015, 06:15 PM
 
Location: Toronto
1 posts, read 577 times
Reputation: 14
Well Toronto416, I can totally relate to you everything you've said in this post. It's eerie how close our experience is, especially this part: "I have small things that make me happy and my parents are the only reason why I am here I think and the only reason I stay in this city, I think the hard part about 40 has been that I look around at others my age who only have things to look forward to: kids growing up, marriages and anniversaries, good things happening and all I see in my future are losses. There are no good things I have on my horizon and there's no amount of therapy or medications or group discussion that will change that. That's pretty much what kind of hit me at 40."

That is exactly how I feel and exactly what I've gone through and am currently going through. I suffered the loss of my father almost 3 years ago now and it was excruciating, especially because when you are single finding people whom you really feel connected to is really hard and losing someone you felt connected to is devastating because you feel more alone than you felt before. I have my mom left, but I dread losing her too in the coming years. It's inevitable that I will lose her, but I just dread the feeling of being left on my own. You try to seek some meaning and sense in your life, you try to focus on the small things that are good in your life, but it doesn't feel like it is enough to fill your soul. And, yes, I stay here for her.

I do not have children or a husband and I never wanted them and I can honestly say that I don't regret that decision. I guess what I'm saying is that I never realized that being on my own, which is something I always wanted even as small child, comes with its disadvantages. I somehow always thought I'd have a group of good friends around me that I could hang out with and feel deeply connected to. It hasn't quite panned out that way. People get older and they get responsibilities and they're just not around to spend time with in the way you did when you were all younger and I totally understand that now. I don't hate my own company, but I do wish I could have a few more people in my life I feel connected to in a more significant way.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is you're not alone. The worst part about feeling the way you do is that you think you're the only one who is going through this and its hard not to be hard on yourself and to not feel like a failure sometimes. I guess the only thing I can say is try not to take it too hard and make it too hard on yourself. For what it's worth, I know plenty of people who are married and who are miserable in their circumstances too, but who can't or won't get out their situation for a myriad of reasons (and responsibilities). They may look at people like you and me and wish they had an ounce of our perceived 'freedom'. The grass is always greener... Try not to think too much about your life in terms of what you should have by now, but instead try to focus on a future that will include not only losses (guaranteed), but also some new friendships along the way. Throw your hat into the ring. It may not always lead to success, but to quote my dad (may he rest in peace): "No" is a given, but "yes" is something that you could possibly obtain if you try.

You're life's not over, even if it feels that way sometimes. ...I'll leave it there.
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Old 08-09-2015, 01:50 PM
 
1,811 posts, read 7,162,594 times
Reputation: 1018
I turned 40 earlier this year. I dreaded the birthday. I felt like I hadn't accomplished all I wanted to by this age and I was a little behind my peers.

But life went on, and the next day everything was fine. I don't feel much different now than I did at 39 or 29. It's no biggie and you'll make it through!
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Old 08-12-2015, 03:53 AM
 
Location: Utica, NY
1,912 posts, read 2,652,237 times
Reputation: 3217
If it's any consolation I am 24, but my boyfriend is 42 and has endless stamina and would put many guys my age to shame. It's just a number
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