Spinster With Cats

I’m turning 50 and I’ve never been married.

spinster_with_catsI never imagined I’d make it to 50 without marrying. Of course, I felt the same at 30. And then 40. Throughout my 40s, I thought surely I’d meet someone and I’d be married by 50. Surely. I had an entire decade, after all. But here I am, 92 days from 50, and living alone with 2.5 cats.

I know being married isn’t necessarily better. I know lots of people who are single at my age, having divorced. Some of them have remarried. (How they found two people to marry, when I haven’t found one, confounds me.) Some prefer to remain single, succumbing to the allure of freedom. And there is a lot to be said for freedom.

If someone were to ask me why I’ve never been married (and this happens all the time), the honest answer is: I have yet to meet the right man for me. I could have been married. But if I had married any of the men I’ve dated long term, for one reason or another, I would have divorced. At times I’ve thought it would be better to have one marriage under my belt so I can say I’ve done it. So I can say I’ve chosen the single life. So I don’t appear to be unlovable. Luckily I realized that’s a stupid reason to marry.

Sometimes I wonder whether I really want to be married. After all, my life is kind of cushy. I’ve got the same list other singles rattle off:

  • I can stay up late reading in bed.
  • I can sleep in when I want.
  • I can travel where and when I want.
  • I can fill the bed with kitties.
  • I can leave dishes in the sink.
  • I can pass gas when I need to.
  • I can spend money how I want.
  • I can meet the girls for happy hour on a moment’s notice.
  • I can spend my time how I want without reporting in.
  • I can write when I want, without interruption.

But what about the benefits of marriage? One of the basic benefits no longer applies to me. I don’t need to marry to have babies. I’m past that, both biologically and emotionally. More financial security would be nice. But who’s to say marriage would provide that? I know a woman whose husband has squandered most of their retirement in an attempt to strike it big. He’s close. So close! He’s been close to striking it big for years. Meanwhile, the account and the security dwindle. I am acquainted with several other women who are providing the financial security in the relationship. I was almost one of them. While marriage may bring financial security, it doesn’t always. Then there’s the fear of being alone. Dying alone. Realistically, the odds are he’ll die first. I’ll be alone, and perhaps die alone, regardless of whether I marry.

I’ve heard marriage can be quite lovely. If you get so lucky as to find the right one. What I want most from a relationship: companionship and intimacy. Maybe I’ll find that by the time I reach 60. After all, I’ve got an entire decade.

About UB Ella

UB Ella (f/k/a Unconfirmed Bachelorette) is a 50-something recovered lawyer who left the practice of law to embrace a full-time writing life. Never-married, child-free Ella resides in Austin, Texas and Ontario, Canada with her four bad cats.
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24 Responses to Spinster With Cats

  1. Welcome to the club (if you trade cat with dog)! 🙂


  2. gertmcqueen says:

    you seem to be having a great life! and those things you want…they will be there!

    I’ve had 2 legal marriages, both under 5 years length and both for children (birthing and then raising). I’ve had 2 ‘common-law’ marriages (current one 16 yrs) both of which I still had/have my own residence. I’ve lived by myself for more about 40 years! I shall grant you that a companion is ‘central’ and it always was important to me; to have one, today I have a marvelous one, but, 3 days a week of togetherness is more than enough for both of us!

    I know many women that are in their 50s, 60s, and 70s, that have never married, no children and live wonderful successful lifes. Stay happy!


  3. Ralph says:

    May I join the club as well with 2.5 cats 😀 I am happy with the way I am, but occasionally it would be nice to have company and a cuddle …….2.5 cats do that anyway 😀 xox


  4. Geraldine says:

    good reasons! 🙂


  5. Geraldine says:

    Mr. Cheddar thanks you! He has a new post up at Veggies…as of a few minutes ago, showing his “inner lion” persona! That’s my boy. 🙂


  6. Our Mom is single and has been all her life (so we’re told) and she says the single life can have lots of rewards. The key is to be happy with yourself and you sound very, very happy! Mom says that we two make her very happy and we can tell your kitties do the same for you!


  7. Summer says:

    It’s better to be solo and happy than to settle for less than what will make you happy. The spark is there or it isn’t – you can’t force it no matter how hard you try. That’s why I’m single too, meeting men is easy, but meeting the right one is pretty darn impossible. I hope you find the right one soon and live happily ever after (waiting is much better than dealing with a nasty divorce)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I think your reason for not marrying–that you haven’t found the right person yet–is the best there is. You might or you might not eventually find someone who fits the bill; the most important thing is that you’re comfortable in your own company. Ultimately, that’s what counts!


  9. Tahira says:

    One never knows what is around the bend…. 🙂


  10. zachandclem says:

    I can do all the things you listed, and I’m about to get married!! But so long as you’re happy, nothing is important.


  11. Pingback: “Marriage Reminds Me of Death” | Women in Contemporary Relationships

  12. Jane says:

    “I can pass gas when I need to”

    OK just don’t do it too loudly or too smelly or you will find the kitties politely leaving the bed.

    I agree with everything you say. I’m 43 and couldn’t imagine living with anyone. Curl up with a good book with a bed filled with kitties and pass gas discreetly.


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