Mr. Never Married at Midlife

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DEAR MIDLIFE BACHELOR: What’s a midlife bachelorette supposed to think? I am 39, my boyfriend of one year is 48. He is never married, no kids. I am divorced (2 years) after a 10 year marriage, 2 kids. 50% custody (I left). We both work in a science realm … and we met at work.

I don’t SEEM to fit into any of your categories (The 14 Types of Women) except maybe the Jackpot for certain guys. Guys who are attracted to me are really attracted to me. Guys who aren’t (usually the very “guy’s guy” type) just aren’t and I don’t even go there. I’m not Jealous, or High Maintenance, or Psycho, or Dull, or a Caterer, or a Party Girl or really any of them. I’m an athletic, nice, (cute) young looking, late 30 something who knows I’m a catch, but is very approachable and easy to talk to. I love men, and men love me. Life is fun for me!! I don’t “like to talk about the relationship” – it all just seems to work or it doesn’t … why crush it to death with “where is this going”? Or “Do we have a future?”…..ugh!! Men hate that stuff and so do I.

So I’m seeing this great guy for a year. He had a 7 month relationship end a few weeks (I think) before we met. “She was really needy” is what he said when I asked about why it ended plus they lived several hundred miles apart. The girl before that was an attorney – it lasted a couple/few months, “you have to date for a few months before you know if it’s going to work out” he said about her (I didn’t ask). The one before that was about a year: “she was a bad girlfriend” he said (I don’t think that I asked-it just came out in a conversation). He has bad feelings about her, that is clear. I know he had SOME longish-term relationships, but I get the idea that most of them were many years ago.

The thing is he’s great and does things to consistently move things along very slowly … he said “I love you” first (7 months in), he offered me a key about a week later, and I didn’t take it. He offered again on Valentine’s Day. I took it.

We do things together all the time when I don’t have kids. We ski and hike and rock climb and have a great time together. He plans everything. I just have to drive the 50 miles to his house because all the mountain stuff is near his place. So that turns into us having the entire relationship on his turf which is fine, I love the town where he lives … except that sometimes I don’t know how to answer the question: “what do you want to do?” I get confused because I simply do not know (it’s not my town). Plus, as a girl in a new relationship, I’m happy to just BE with him. This is somewhat annoying to him even though I’ve explained that it’s hard to know things when you’re ignorant (of that particular thing). He totally “got it” and was very understanding.

I can’t figure out what his DEAL is and if it even matters…..we have a great time…..shouldn’t I just GO with it? We spend time with my kids OCCASIONALLY. Usually the weekends that I’m with my kids, we don’t see each other, but sometimes. He has offered, and we’ve taken them camping or rock climbing. They ski, so that’s easy. He calls, but not everyday. Somehow we seem to have contact most days (email, text whatever). Of course, I rarely call him either.

I can’t figure out what my question is except that maybe I’m curious about Never Marrieds. Are they really looking “for the right one” and wouldn’t settle for anything less, or can they just NOT commit to something that big. He has nieces and nephews that he really likes…..he seems to like my girls (and they sure like him)…..but I’m wondering if I’m just having a good time or if I want more from someone who just wouldn’t be able to do it…..

I think that you’re going to say: clearly the guy can’t have a long term relationship or he already would’ve. Oh! I forgot – he took me “home for Christmas” to meet his family (just the siblings and their families as mom and dad are dead) after 6 months-they said that he had never done that before. They all loved me and we all got along great. I want to hear from a bachelor man……what is going on here?? Miki

MLB RESPONSE: Honestly to me it sounds like you two have a great thing going … so my first suggestion is maybe to not over-analyze the man and the situation. Just have fun, and see where it takes you … bask in the glory of the moment! You are fairly freshly divorced – so enjoy the ride! There is no harm in having fun, and no rule that says you must be on the road to your next wedding, right? I’m suggesting that you not overthink the relationship and it’s future … just relax, and go with the flow.

I think your real question has to do with the never marrieds … those individuals out there who have never gotten married … and you are wondering if they have commitment issues, or ??? Well, it COULD BE that he has commitment issues … or it could be that he just gets bored over time … or it could be something else. Have you ever thought about asking him why he has never gotten married? I bet he has an answer – so try talking it over with him, and see what he says. Now if someone asked me why I have not gotten remarried (since divorcing in my mid-twenties), my answer today would be that I personally tend to get bored with the same person over time – and that living together is perfectly acceptable to me (which is what I’m doing with my current girlfriend). Besides, marriage is very risky to the higher income earner involved … especially here in California. Marriage is the #1 cause of divorce in America today … so why risk it? Good luck with your discussion with your boyfriend. Let me know how it goes, okay.

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About the Author

Midlife Bachelor chronicles lifestyle, dating, and relationship experiences and advice to avoid a midlife crisis. Readers like you are often beyond young adulthood in their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s that want to understand how dating, sex, relationships, and love fit in with our lifestyles.