dont know what i want from my life

by sandy
(west midlands)

Hi, I am Sandy and I live in the Midlands (UK), I don't know what I want in life. I married for 20 years and I am 36 years old - and I have three children. Most of the time I feel alone, sad and want to be left alone. I am missing out on something but don't know what. I hope you can help me.
Thank you.

Ben's Answer:

Sandy - if you've been married since you were 16, and have 3 kids, then you've probably skipped over some of the usual steps in growing up and experiencing your independence. Usually around the age of 18 most people are moving away from home, dating, experiencing new things - especially their freedom. Getting married while still in your mid teens and then having 3 kids probably limited your freedom in many ways. I would guess that your sadness and loneliness comes from missing some part of your own self that didn't have a chance to develop in your teens and twenties.

Being a mother, especially at a young age, often consumes your identity as a person. As a parent, it is very hard to follow your dreams and passions, or even remember what your dreams are, when all your time and energy is devoted to caring for your children. At some point you still have to find a way to focus on your own feelings, your own desires and your own needs. You have to have time to your self to reflect on your life and get in touch with what you really want for yourself, outside of just being a wife and mother.

You might start by just finding one activity that you can do every week, just for yourself - no family. It could be a class where you can develop an interest or talent that you've given up; It could be a yoga class, or meditation class or an art class or writing class - something creative or introspective to help you get back in touch with your own Soul.

The good thing is that you're still young. It's never to late to rediscover yourself and find what makes you truly happy. If you don't know what to do - than just do something. It doesn't matter what, as long as it's something new. All roads lead to the same place.

Best Wishes,
Ben Schwarcz, MFT
Santa Rosa Psychotherapist

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