In a recent poll, I asked my female readers, "Do you want to get married?" Of the 105 women who responded, the results were evenly split:45 percent would like to marry 45 percent don't want to marry 10 percent were undecidedOf the 45 percent who were unwilling to tie the knot, here are the reasons they gave: Independence This was the most frequently stated reason. It seems that many ThirdAge women enjoy their freedom.Anne of Los Angeles said, "Since I became a widow a second time 12 years ago, I have learned to become independent for the first time in my life, and I love it. I'm proud that I can take care of myself. I was very dependent, especially in my first marriage."Ginny said, "I'd never give up my freedom to do anything whenever I want without having to consider anyone else's feelings. Where I live, there is so much to do, you don't feel the need of a man's company.""I don't need someone to take care of me," said Bette of New Orleans. "I have a successful job/career, my own house, family, etc. I enjoy my privacy, freedom and personal and financial independence. I see no benefit to getting entangled in anything more than a nice relationship." Alone Time Some women cherish being able to spend time by themselves.Francesca wrote, "I absolutely would not want to live together or marry. I love being alone. I enjoy my lover for a day or two when he is here, and then I crave my privacy."
Another woman added, "I was married 23 years and have no desire to go there again -- too confining, too stifling. I love my independence, space, freedom and flexibility of being alone."
"I've been single for 11 years and am finally becoming my own person," wrote Phyliss. "I wish my husband had left me years before. I have so much to do and am running out of time. Feels good to be someone other than someone's wife or mother."
Jenni wrote, "As a woman who was married, I enjoy my time alone and being independent, [and] would not be willing to compromise that. I'm happy and contented."
Past marital experiences have left some women cool on marriage.
Ann said, "Three not-so-hot marriages left me more than a little disillusioned about 'the joys of wedded bliss.'"
Bobbie added, "Once around is enough of that. Nor do I want to baby-sit or raise another husband. No need to marry as kids are not in the question."
Married friends who make negative comments about marriage also influence singles. Linda of Colorado, a never-married woman, said, "Most of my girlfriends tell me I'm not missing anything. They have tried the institution and are divorced."
Finances also dictate why some won't remarry.
Vickie of Orlando e-mailed, "I receive a nice alimony check each month, eventually 50 percent of his Social Security, and upon his death, hundreds of thousands in life insurance. So why would I even think of getting married again?"
Jane of Oshkosh, Wis., wrote, "I don't want to be a nursemaid to anyone or pick up after them, and I have taken care of my own finances."From a woman named Joan: "Because many women my age now earn enough to support themselves quite well (or have had good alimony settlements), men's egos come into play here and they just can't deal with that."Now that you've heard from women who are unlikely to wed, stay tuned for Part II of our series, where we'll hear from ThirdAge women on just what it would take to get them down the aisle again.Tom Blake is a syndicated columnist in Southern California.
Source: Relationships & Love