Musings from outside the mainstream.
NOBODY’S RETIREMENT HUSBAND writes into DEAR ABBY saying that at 53 he’s had two failed marriages that cost him emotionally and financially, and he’s unwilling to get married again. He has a strong preference to date women his age, but they end up hurt, even though he’s been upfront about his disinterest in marrying for the third time. He doesn’t sound like a player, just someone fatigued by running into the same issue over and over. Which is why ABBY’s advice seems so out of line.
ABBY begins with sarcasm (“I admire your self-image,”) and ends with sarcasm (“if variety is what you prefer.”) There isn’t much advice and DEAR ABBY actually manages to sound like a tottering old maid in this one. Needless to say, I have a slightly different take on NOBODY’S RETIREMENT HUSBAND’s predicament.
She wasn’t good, but she had good intentions. – Lyle Lovett
NOBODY’S RETIREMENT HUSBAND, those women you’ve dated might not have entirely innocent hearts. I’ve found that women will go along with things, thinking she can later change my mind. And then she’ll be heartbroken when I don’t change. And, any guy knows that if you ask a woman to change you’ll hear “You have to accept me the way I am,” complete with hands on hips and the bug-eyed head/neck roll.
So I guess I’ve come to view the tears in these situations as part crocodile tears.
ABBY suggests a prenuptial agreement to ameliorate his fear of being taken to the cleaners, again. But I’ve got to wonder if ABBY has ever brought up the concept of a prenuptial in a real life relationship. I hear men report that they get iceberg treatment and accusations of being controlling, commitment averse or lacking generosity when they broach the subject. And if they remain firm on wanting a pre-nup, the relationships are soon over.
So what is it that women want in that case, if not to be taken care of financially?
DEAR ABBY’s advice and mindset are dated and she simultaneously fails to acknowledge that there are plenty of women with a similarly dated viewpoint who are still looking for someone to provide for them financially. On the flip side though, there are professional women who have no desire to marry or co-mingle finances.
I am curious how NOBODY’S RETIREMENT HUSBAND would characterize the women he’s been dating. I’m guessing his dating pool has tended towards women seeking a more traditional arrangement, which is fine if that’s what both parties are seeking. Since it’s not what he wants, I suggest that maybe he look for women who have careers, savings and are homeowners.