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Dear Breakup Girl,
At the risk of sounding insufferable.... my problem is how to meet
men. I'm 42, but still pretty enough to turn heads in Manhattan; I have a
MBA and a Phi Beta Kappa undergraduate degree; and my income is approaching
seven figures a year. I'm also nice, sweet, and eminently sane. (I don't cook
or do windows, though.)
Meeting men per se is not hard...but finding someone with the right
of intelligence, professional accomplishment (not necessarily money; I could
be just as happy with, say, a respected professor), solid values, and
has been, so far, impossible.
I broke up in February with someone I thought could be the one; in fact, he
HAD asked me to marry him, and I initially said yes. In very short order, I
found out that his idea of our marriage was that, since I make so much more
money than he does (he's a freelance writer), I should (1) completely forgo
a ring; (2) pay for the entire wedding myself; and (3) buy a new million-dollar
apartment that he would own half of in a neighborhood that was inconvenient
for me because, as he put it, "Why did I think I was so special that I
shouldn't have to commute like everyone else in New York?"
(I recently changed jobs, and, for the first time in my 19-year career, I
walk to work. I also bought a lovely, large apartment that I like, in a
I like, less than 18 months ago. I offered my ex half the equity in my current
apartment, but that wasn't good enough for him. Needless to say, I changed my
mind about the marriage.)
Since my breakup, I tried a dating service and was told they don't take
over 40. I placed a personal ad and got (1) loads of men 15 or more years my
senior; (2) one who told me things about his sexual habits that I don't ever
want to know about anyone, let alone a virtual stranger on a second
(3) one who was very sweet but still, at 45, lives in his parents' house in
Brooklyn; (4) one who seemed perfect on first meeting but whose subsequent
shouts "commitment-phobe" (e.g., calls and leaves messages on my machine when
he knows I'm not there; every time I try to return calls, I get either a busy
signal or no-answer-no-machine); and (5) several others who struck me as just
Needless to say, I've also told friends and colleagues that I'm single and
would love to meet nice men they may know, but so far nothing's come of it.
I also attend church, but haven't found it a very good avenue for meeting
men. Oh, and let's see, I have a singles-night theater subscription starting
in the fall, and I'm a member of several museums where I occasionally attend
So how about it, BG? Any more suggestions for meeting Mr. Right? Whether I
find a man or not, I know I'm pretty privileged, and I'll be content no matter
what. But it would so enhance my life (turn contentment into real happiness)
if I had the right partner to share it with.
Maybe if you cooked or did windows.
Oh, I am SO kidding.
Okay. You know my speech on this, I think. (See, for
one, Enuff Already.) Good news/bad news: you are
everything right. Your attitude, your activities. Right. And those SMs you met?
Smoochage of requisite frogs. And good for you for not making excuses: those
warts are not the "and all" kind. Eeuw, yeah, but also: Life.
But the problem in your case, I know, is that when it
comes to Life, it kinda feels like you got less left. Right? Bet that 40+
made you feel super!
Still, Libby, they're there. They're there. And,
perhaps bachelor number 3, what you will eventually find (forgive me) "at
your age" is that they're
"done." Done as in cooked through. Ready. Or if they're not, the
raw part -- as you have found -- will show up faster. Otherwise, generally,
they'll have found themselves. Which puts them in the perfect place -- theater?
museum? tadpole tank?-- to find you.
PS: Speaking of Life, here are a few more things that
are just true about it: people do not (1) return calls, (2) RSVP, (3) make
of photos, or (4) come through on setting their friends up. Keep dropping hints
to the right Yentes, yes -- it's a vibe thing -- but don't sweat it.
PPS: Also, you could always pull a
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