A 38-year-old single woman who ended her marriage because of her husband’s demands has cried out while blaming feminism as the reason she’s single with no child.
Melissa Persling wrote an article for Business Insider titled: “I’m 38 and single, and I recently realized I want a child. I’m terrified I’ve missed my opportunity.”
She also granted an interview to Fox News Digital where she broke down crying, describing how she feared she would end up alone and childless.
The woman, who has now decided as she approaches her 39th birthday that she wants to settle down, have a family and a husband, said she felt “betrayed by feminism”.
In her Business Insider article, Persling revealed that she married a traditional man t the age of 22 and moved to a rural community in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, where she grew up.
“He wanted a simple life with children and home-cooked meals. At that time I felt very strongly I did not want children, that I wasn’t going to be like the traditional housewife. I knew I did want to pursue a career, and I felt very strongly that that would never change. And I guess I was wrong,” she told Fox News.
Persling said she and her ex thought that love could conquer everything, but after 10 years, it was clear their differences in life goals were irreconcilable. She became resentful when he would ask for dinner or for his laundry to be done.
“I did little to hide my disdain for our small-town life. He was a good and hardworking man, but I don’t think I made him feel that way,” she said.
When she was 30, she and her ex-husband divorced.
“I told my friends and family I’d never get married again. I needed independence, a fulfilling career, and space to chart my own course, and I didn’t think marriage fit into that vision. I was content to look toward a future without a husband, children, or the trappings of a ‘traditional’ life,’” she wrote.
However, as she got older, she said the fun, carefree lifestyle, being wined and dined, and going to parties began to get old.
When she turned 38, terror began to take over.
“I was panic-stricken. I really thought I’m going to be alone forever. It really scared me. I don’t want people to miss out on the important things in life because they’re just enjoying themselves because I don’t think that that’s ever going to really make you happy,” she said.
She wrote in the article how she felt “urgency” to find a stable relationship and was rethinking about wanting marriage and children.
“I hardly recognized myself,” she wrote in the article. “I also began to feel selfish for spending so much time focusing solely on myself… My very existence started to feel shallow and hollow.”
In retrospect, Persling believed she had some self-discovery and work for herself to do, and it took time to sort through previous trauma. Her parents’ divorce, which she described as coming from “a broken home,” took time to heal and sort through to find out what she really wanted.
“I grew up in a fairly traditional family, but my parents were divorced. And I would say that probably had some effect on my feelings about having a family coming from a broken home certainly has its hardships,” she told Fox News Digital.
At one point, she recalled a man coming over to her in a coffee store who randomly told her not to lose hope – that God had a plan for her.
After publishing her story, she gave an update. She said her life took a happy turn, which she describes as the exception and not the rule for women in her age group.
Shortly after penning the article, she dated a man who she previously befriended. They’re already talking about marriage and a future.
She said: “So it’s a guy that I’ve been friends with, and we’ve always just sort of stayed in touch. And we did go on one date about a year ago, and I told him, ‘I just want to be friends with you.’”
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After her epiphany that she wanted a traditional life – the realization that he was “the one” hit her like “a ton of bricks,” she said.
“This guy is the one that God’s been preparing for me,” she added.
“I’ve had these relationships since where there were so many butterflies and so many like, ‘Oh my gosh, checking my phone. Did he text?’ And I realized, that’s not love.
That’s anxiety. I never knew where I stood with those people. I could never envision a future with those people.”
Persling said she is looking forward to a modest, meaningful and happy future.
“Moving into my future, I’m not going to be traveling. I’m not going to have a lot of extra money. I’m not going to be going out for fancy dinners and I’m OK with that,” she said. “I’m ready for that. I think that’s what’s really going to make me happy. Like I’m so done just making myself happy.”
“You think you’re happy when you’re doing all these things [when you’re single] to make yourself happy. I don’t think you really are. It’s the relationships that make you happy. It’s building something with another person. It’s creating a life with another person, having goals and plans with another person. It’s making other people happy. Making people you love happy. That’s happiness. I really don’t think I will know true happiness until I’m in that place.”
While Persling doesn’t consider herself a feminist, she attributed feminism – in part – as the reason she had thought negatively about marriage.