225: LAT And The Idea of Settling

I have two interesting articles from The Globe And Mail to share with you, about older women turning their back on traditional relationship styles post divorce. You can find them here and here. It gave me a feeling of contentment. It’s women saying they don’t need men, and that men need to grow a backbone and learn to be independent. Of course, that isn’t so easy since a lot of this is generational, and we are all conditioned within our societal groups. I would imagine that women in their fifties and younger will find this less of a challenge, in many cases.

I am not of the age group in this study and whilst I have fallen into those traditional ‘wife style’ roles a few times, it’s not something I particularly revelled in or would do again. It makes you feel vulnerable and taken advantage of, and yet, I did it. With that in mind, it’s one reason I would never live full time with another partner.

Living Apart Together (LAT) means you can afford to settle a bit, because you’re not having to live with the things you don’t like. You can go home for part of the week (or all of it) and not have to be annoyed by irritating habits or their love of game shows. One of the problems with modern young daters is this notion of not being willing to settle, to take the good with the bad. They expect perfect, and perfect DOES NOT EXIST. LAT means you can afford to overlook a few irritations. You don’t have to live with it.

I can use my current situation with Leigh as the perfect example. I get the good bits, and I can already tell what about him would grate on me if we lived together. It would never work.

However, it means that whilst men struggle with the living alone concept because they are essentially looking for a housekeeper, nurse and cook, older women have learned to fill in the gaps in their knowledge and get on with loving their new-found freedom. Typically, men have dug their heels in and hoped to find wife replacements, women have learned how to do their own household finances, fix a plug and expand their friend groups.

But when I look one generation older, to my parents for instance, the story is very different. My Dad can just about make toast. My mum doesn’t even know what a utility bill looks like. And this is a worry because one day, one of them is going to be left behind, and I worry what that will look like.

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