My most recent Huff Po blog.  Since everything else in the world is such a mess (government shut-down, I’m filled with anger about all of that) — I thought I’d focus on something lighter.  

One night, a few years ago, I went to a party for a professional organization I am a member of.  Most people there were getting pretty drunk, feeling the effects of the lousy economy.  I saw an old friend of mine, someone I hadn’t seen in many years.  He flirted with me and told me, “I’m married and I’m miserable. I hate my wife and I hate my life.”  I was a bit shocked at his honesty, but I had to admit I wasn’t particularly happy either.   He also told me that he’d had a crush on me when we were young—and would I have dated him back then?  I lied and said, “Oh, yes. I would have dated you.”  Truthfully, I wasn’t particularly interested in him way back then.  But now, he had evolved into a mature, attractive man, with a lovely sense of humor, and I was interested.  In fact, I went home and had my first erotic dream in a long time—and it was about him.    
Two years later we were both divorced.  Are we happier divorced?  Yes, at least I know I am.  Has he asked me out on a date?  No.  But I haven’t asked him either.  I have flirted with him and though it would make such a great Hollywood story if we did hook up, life isn’t all Hollywood, is it?  The point is, we were both miserable and we had the courage and honesty to do something about it. 
I don’t know if he initiated his divorce or his wife did.  In my case, I was the first one to point out that the patient (our marriage) was on life support and barely alive and then a few months later, it was my husband who pulled the plug.  Excellent teamwork, I have to admit.
We actually were a great team on some levels, we functioned well in so many ways. But there were simply too many losses, we were the Buffalo Bills of marriage.  One damn loss after another.  It was as if life was saying, “Just because you’ve suited up for so long doesn’t mean you have to stay in the game. Run!  Get out of there!  You’re dying inside.”
So I thought, well, if I can have so much fun flirting at that party there must be hundreds of interesting men out there.  And there are, probably hundreds of thousands, in the tri-state area alone.  But finding one that I actually want to spend time with, talk to, sleep with, and forsaking all others for—that’s a different matter. 
A friend of mine, also mature, but never married, told me her theory about dating men over 50.  Once the need to procreate is past, they are in no rush to get married.  And from my own research —neither are millions of women.  I’m reading a book called Sex at Dawn and one of its main points is that we are truly meant to be promiscuous, so what’s the rush to find Mr. or Ms. Right?  (Who, in fact, really don’t exist.)  What’s the rush to cook, clean, shop, spend all your time with one person?  Once your kids are grown, it’s actually quite nice to do whatever the hell you want to do. 
The truth is, I like being single and I certainly don’t want to settle for someone unless I totally adore him and he totally adores me.  I believe that is possible.  I know that is what I would want next time around.
I do know women who dated like mad after their divorce and met lots of men on-line and slept with most of them and then eventually, after a couple of years, got married.  Well, I know one woman. But she is very happy and she said the guy she married was nothing like she imagined he would be and it’s all worked out beautifully. 
Sometimes I think that like everything else in my life, when the time is right, when it’s supposed to happen, it will happen.  My mate will materialize.  I may have to do the work: go on-line, talk on the phone, go out for coffees, dinners, walks in the park, send emails and texts (just thinking about all of this makes me want to lie down).
Then again my neighbor reads Tarot cards and the cards say, “You know him already.  He’s someone you’ve known for a long time.”  So I look at every man I know and I think, “Is it you?  Is it you?”  So far it isn’t him. 
I have male friends I adore.  But moving from the friend category to the lover/partner category is fraught with danger.  I see a big X when I think about attempting that with any of my lovely men friends.
I did have love after my divorce.  I met D at a grief group (he’d lost his brother and his dad, I’d lost my mother).  We became best friends and hung out all the time  and watched movies, and rode our bikes and talked and we were inseparable.  He wanted it to be more and I knew it wasn’t supposed to be a relationship relationship.  I just wasn’t ready.  My heart was pretty shut down after my divorce and I cared too much for him to just fool around.  I met some men on-line and fooled around with them – they were lovely, but unavailable, both by time and inclination.  My friend D started dating one of my best friends, P, and that nearly killed me.  It nearly killed her too because it didn’t last and everyone’s heart was a tiny bit shattered. 
Now D is with the perfect woman for him, L, I love her almost as much as I love him.  We go to Sunday night movies together as a group—sometimes the three of us, sometimes with other friends from the alphabet.  I still love him deeply and I know he loves me too.
So where is Mr. Next Guy?  Beats me.  But truthfully, I know he’s coming.  One of these days.  Maybe it will be at another party and someone will say, “I had a crush on you back in 1983…would you have gone out with me then?”
And maybe I’ll have the courage to say, “No, probably not in 1983, but I definitely would now, in 2013.”

One night, a few years ago, I went to a party for a professional organization I am a member of. Most people there were getting pretty drunk, feeling the effects of the lousy economy. I saw an old friend of mine, someone I hadn’t seen in many years. He flirted with me and told me, “I’m married and I’m miserable. I hate my wife and I hate my life.” I was a bit shocked at his honesty, but I had to admit I wasn’t particularly happy either. He also told me that he’d had a crush on me when we were young — would I have dated him back then? I lied and said, “Oh, yes. I would have dated you.” Truthfully, I wasn’t particularly interested in him way back then. But now, he had evolved into a mature, attractive man, with a lovely sense of humor, and I was interested. In fact, I went home and had my first erotic dream in a long time — and it was about him. Read More →

 My latest HuffPost:

I had it all. I had the American dream. I lived in a beautiful loft in the heart of SoHo (okay, I know some of you want the house and the picket fence, I wanted a loft in New York City).
And I had the baby, the most wonderful daughter. And two dogs. I had everything I’d ever dreamed of and I was deeply, deeply grateful.
I had the wedding, with a beautiful dress from Paris with lace, made in the 1920’s — very much my style. I had a honeymoon at a lovely resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
We moved to New York City a few months after we got married to pursue our dreams. I was 34, not that young, but old enough to know what I was looking for. It had taken hundreds of dates, blind dates, fix-ups — there was no internet dating in those days. I’d lived with other men. It had taken hard work, but I was determined to find the love of my life and have it all. My career was in television writing and I was about to break into films. I could hear the biological clock ticking and I desperately wanted to have a baby. I had dated men in my business and I finally found someone who was an artist — intelligent, talented, articulate — and he made a living. He was a bit lonely and depressed, but I was going to rescue him and make him happy with a family and a home and everything that would answer all of his prayers — and mine — and we would live happily ever after.
And we did, for a time. It was great.
It lasted until about a week after the wedding. And then, subtly, I sensed a shift. He had been attentive and available before, and within a few months after the wedding, I felt the door close. It wasn’t obvious, but in the first year of our marriage I wrote an essay that was never published called “The Myths of Marriage.” And the funny part was, I had taken a course years before about dating and marriage and one of the main points was that we present ourselves one way when we are trying to “get” someone and then once we “have” them; we let our guard down and we show who we really are.
I knew that and yet, I acted like I really enjoyed cooking though I hated cooking. And he acted like he really enjoyed spending weekends with me, when he really wanted to work seven days a week. But we made a commitment and we worked at it and we became a family.
There are few things in life more rewarding than finding someone you love, who loves you, who knows you and over the years, through all the difficult life experiences, is your ally and your friend and your sounding board and your lover. Those kind of relationships are hard to find.
But after 23 years of marriage, we got divorced. I deserved more and he deserved to be who he was (turns out he didn’t really want to be rescued). And my beautiful lace dress from Paris? I had rented it from a costume house in Hollywood. Maybe even then I knew that you can’t hold on to some things forever, no matter how beautiful they seem at one time in your life.
Here is my suggestion: Be you. Don’t try to be anyone else.
Also, live your life with pleasure and do what you love and what is important to you. Work hard, play hard, don’t be waiting for someone to complete you. Complete yourself.
A great marriage is really a dream for most. It takes honesty — knowing and presenting who you really are. It isn’t for everyone; it takes effort and a great deal of compromise and patience. It is not the Nobel Prize of life. It is no longer even the American dream, or any dream. Perhaps you saw Eric Klinenberg’s piece in The New York Times about living alone in which he reports, “More people live alone now than at any other time in history… In Manhattan and in Washington, nearly one in two households are occupied by a single person… In Paris, the city of lovers, more than half of all households contain single people.” Even in Paris — my beloved city of lights — even they had a light bulb moment: living alone, or at least unmarried, need not be stigmatized or pathetic or necessarily lonely.
I don’t know if I will ever get married again. Divorce was one of the worst experiences of my life, which led me to one of the best and most productive periods of my life. I am not waiting to meet the next man to love; I am busy, working hard, grateful for my life, dating, dancing, enjoying my daughter, my friends and a rent-stabilized loft in SoHo, which I share with a good friend. Not a man. With men, I dance. And right now, that’s working really well for me.
Dreams are for when you are asleep. Life is what happens when you are awake. It’s never what you expect. Enjoy it.

I don’t know what to say about this really except that it’s amazing how easy it is to get back into the dating scene these days, if you’re open.  It’s lovely that I have so many men in my life who I genuinely like and who seem to like me.  It’s fun to get to know people and I have a better sense of what I need in a man.  I need a man who makes me laugh and a man with big appetites for life – food, fun, experiences, adventure, connection.  I need a kind man, a man who isn’t afraid to be open with his feelings and likes to communicate.  A man with a big heart, who’s also smart.  I don’t think that’s impossible to find, do you?

And I hope he’d be willing to dance on the table if we ever went together to Opa in Miami Beach, or he’d at least enjoy watching me having fun dancing on the tables!  

I’m writing every day now and I have to say, today’s writing made me cry but it felt so good to just let the words flow.  I love first drafts because for me, they are as Hemingway said, “always shit” – but they give me a sense of what I want to say and I don’t judge anything (too much) as I write a first draft.

There’s plenty of time for that later, when I get to the later drafts.  Sometimes I think I should just be writing and not dating, but then life would feel pretty serious and I’ve had serious for too long.


This week and next week my husband and I sit down together with our lawyers.  I haven’t seen or spoken to him in two months.  A lot has happened in two months.

I think I mentioned that I have been receiving a daily “divorce support” email that is a bit too religious for me…but every once in awhile I read something that resonates.  I’ve been feeling like I need time for myself before I do any serious dating, and this is what I read over the weekend:  

 “If you come out of a relationship and then immediately jump into another one, your heart does not get a chance to fully heal; therefore, you are walking along wounded emotionally. You are vulnerable, then, to starting this new relationship without a whole heart, and you’re going to try to suck your need for acceptance and significance out of this person all the more. You’re not really in the relationship for the other person. You’re in it for yourself.”

I know of one couple who met a few months after he and his wife split up and they couldn’t be happier.  I know that in his case, his marriage was such a disaster, his wife was (is) a non-functioning alcoholic, so although he was physically there, he had left long ago.  He was ready to fall in love and he got lucky.  And so did my friend. They have four kids between them, plenty of problems, but they adore each other. 

I don’t know what my future will be, but I know that right now I am in a good place and I am grateful.  After many months of coping with so much loss and more tears than I have cried in my entire life, I feel stronger than I have in a long time.  That doesn’t mean I don’t feel waves of sadness and fear.  It just means that I have to “keep praying and moving my feet.”