Struggling to stay positive

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    I’m a 29 year old, black female from London and over the last year or so I’ve seriously considered taking my own life…

    My life’s a mess. In spite of all my efforts I can’t get anything right. I’m so down right now and fearful for what the future holds. Nothing that I hoped or planned for has worked out. Not a single thing. I feel cursed.

    I’m perpetually single and never seem to meet the right man. I’ve never experienced a stable, happy relationship in my life and this saddens me as I really want to be a mother one day (soon I hope) and have a family of my own. My longest relationship was about 7-8 months and it ended horribly – like they all do. My last relationship was so bad towards the end (I didn’t want to give ‘us’ up), I started to have panic attacks around the time of my birthday and was diagnosed with Anxiety disorder and put on anti-depressants (which I’ve not taken for some time now). I wanted so badly for it to work out for us even though there were so many issues. The thought of being alone / single as I approach my 30’s was terrifying – especially as ALL my friends are settled and having babies. I keep thinking, “what’s wrong with me?” or “why can’t I meet someone nice?”, but now I’m starting to accept the fact that maybe I’m not meant to be a wife or mother.

    I was also diagnosed with Systemic Lupus 3 years ago which has had a major impact on my life. The cocktail of drugs I take daily are harmful, but I must keep taking them or else suffer worse pain and discomfort like I did in the beginning. I’ve started losing my hair recently and can see that the daily toll of living with a chronic illness is starting to show in my face. I also have to face the possibility that I may not be able to conceive or carry a child to term with this illness and all the medication I take. I feel that the longer I leave it to start a family, the slimmer my chances of becoming a mother as my fertility also diminishes.

    I recently moved into a studio apartment following problems I’ve had over the last 3-4 years with dubious flatmates and unscrupulous landlords (I’ve moved 3 times this year and we’e only in August). Only now, I’ve discovered more problems with the new flat (my neighbour’s electric supply comes from my flat) and my parents and various authorities have had to get involved now. I’m also struggling with the cost of renting on my own in London and I barely have any money left after bills are paid and can no longer afford a social life – not that I had much of one to start with. I wanted to book a vacation this summer and learn to drive, but have had to sacrifice this in favour of finding ‘stable’ accommodation (look how well that’s working out?!).

    I’ve also had to let go of 2 really close girlfriends in a short space of time as lately I feel like everything always revolves around them and their lives (1 has a partners and both have kids), but no consideration given to mine. And on the rare occasion I do mention my problems to them, it’s shrugged off as though it’s not important or they’ll say something really insensitive or hurtful. They rarely have time for me anymore and when I do see them, I never get their full attention. It pains me to have to walk away from them, but I can’t cope with everything that’s going on as well as their obvious indifference towards me. I understand their priorities have changed, but that doesn’t mean you stop being a good friend.

    I work hard in my job and was fortunate enough to be given a permanent role following a 6 month contract, and I am grateful for the few family /friends who have been supportive throughout my trials, but this isn’t the life I planned for myself. Not even close. I feel like there is no joy in my life. I wake up alone, go to work alone, come home alone, eat alone and go to bed alone. I had envisioned a life with a loving partner, wedding bells, babies and a shared home at this age – not a poky overpriced studio flat, stress, ill health and poverty.

    The thought of living another 10+ years like this is unbearable… It’s a sad, painful, lonely existence with no love. Anything good is always fleeting and I seem to lurch from one drama/crisis to another. I feel emotionally and physically spent and I’m scared that the rest of my life is going to be like this. I’m not a bad person, I work hard and volunteer every Sunday with a local homeless charity (making sandwiches) and always make the effort to keep a connection with my family and friends – so why can’t I get a break in life? Why can’t I have a little piece of joy in my sad existence?

    I’d rather be dead than live like this.



    I am very sorry to hear of your struggles. Although this may not have been the life you envisioned for yourself, do you think you can create a new vision for yourself. A new vision revolving around your present circumstances. For example, if you cannot conceive could you adopt, thus you still have the opportunity to be a mother. Can you work with your doctor(s) to prescribe you less medicine? Are there alternative treatments or life style changes you can make to help with your illness? Have you tried yoga or meditation or other calming techniques for your anxiety? About not having a partner. Have you taken the time to evaluate why your relationships aren’t long lasting? It takes two to tango. I kept thinking I was with the wrong men and realized there was a lot about myself that was wrong. The way I am in relationships needed changing. I had/have fears of deep intimacy, fear of abandonment, trust issues and fear of commitment. Write down the type of partner you want to be and the type of partner that you want. For example, not to be a perfect partner but I want to be a supportive partner or a fun partner or a trustworthy partner or compassionate. Work on building those traits within yourself.

    Also I know you feel very lonely but don’t take your friend’s lack of time too personal. I know it is hurtful to not have them around all the time but try to be understanding. My sister, is currently staying with me and she has a toddler. I imagined we would be having some fun sister bonding time but every second revolves around her child because it has to. I didn’t realize how demanding child-rearing was until I actually experienced it first hand. I don’t want to be in her place. I used to feel bad for not having children since my sister who is younger has children and even my two older brothers. I am the only one without kids. I feel pressure from family but this just isn’t the time right now. I am in my late twenties and approaching thirty as well but really everything happens in its time. It is more important for me to work on my internal self so that when and if I do have children, I can be the loving mother I want to be. Also so that if and when I marry, I can be a loving partner.

    Also the grass isn’t always greener. A lot of my settled down friends envy my lifestyle. Imagine having kids, a house, a husband and still feeling just as lonely as you do now. Many people do this. They think a family would fix things and they find themselves worse than before. Join a lupus group for support, hang more with single friends and check out new (free) things to do where you can meet potential partners. Maybe a meditation group. Then you can find a mindful man. Heck, get a new job and move to a different city or country. Teach English abroad for a year. The road is wide open for you. Take this time to really focus on yourself and loving yourself.

    Here is a quote for you; “Your task is not to seek for love but to find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” Rumi

    Here is a Ted Talk that really motivated me to do some heavy internal work:


    Warmest Regards,


    • This reply was modified 6 years, 10 months ago by Zenhen.


    Please seek help for your suicidal thoughts. Here is some helplines for the UK

    Please get help!


    Buddhist Wife

    Hello Lupie One,

    I’m so sorry to hear how down you are feeling. I agree with Zenhen, suicidal thoughts represent a major health crisis and you should seek help.

    I’m so sorry to hear that you are feeling down. It is understandable given how many troubles you have been given in the past few years.

    I found myself ill-suited to living alone and like you it made me very low. When I was living alone I came across this book. It’s a bit cheeky and irreverent but I actually found the central messages in it extremely useful. Even though I’m now married I still keep it and read it from time to time because I believe it has so much positive energy. It’s a get up and go sort of book which is useful for me because I am often a ‘sit down and flop’ type of person!

    It was written by a women in the 1920’s I believe so some of the advice is a little out of date, for example she recommends getting your maid to make you breakfast! However the sentiment behind it is good and some of the tips are very practical.

    Another practical suggestion I would like to make is this.

    I don’t know, with the constraints placed upon you by your health condition, how well suited this would be, however it might be useful. Basically the National Trust offer ‘Working Holidays’. You go to some National Trust property for a couple of days and your accommodation and food is provided. In return you do some work on the property. For the shorter breaks the costs are not too high, around £80 in some cases, which is far more affordable then a normal holiday.

    If you do get to go on one of these breaks it could give you some time away and you could meet some new people.

    You may also want to try

    I believe it is free to join and as you live in London I imagine there must be many events happening near you.

    So that’s the practical advice part of this reply over with!

    I have to second what Zenhen has said about the child rearing thing. I have a little one and I am never able to give my single focused attention to anything. It’s not personal, it’s just how it is.

    I also think that you might feel better if you change the way you think about the amount of love in your life. Instead of thinking about the love that you lack, why not focus on the amount of love that you are putting out into the world. For example your volunteer work at the homelessness charity. That action is incredibly loving. There have probably been several times that those sandwiches have warmed someones heart, someone who has nothing and whom the rest of the world ignores. For a moment they were reminded that actually, someone did care about them enough to help, someone valued them as a human enough to give them some attention.

    I really hope that you feel happier and stronger soon.

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