by Leslie Logg
Synopsis: This patient lives in Cuenca and is a single male. His chief complaint is loneliness. He is in his mid sixties and cannot find a suitable mate. He has had the opportunity to get involved on many occasions but repeatedly it ends before it begins.
“Am I just afraid to make the same mistakes I’ve made in the past or,” he said and froze his speech.
I am suddenly interested. He has a thought that may hold some insight, “Or what?” I ask in a psychological tone.
“Maybe, just maybe I have found something that really matters,” he said wearing a look of transparent understanding.
“What did you find that is so important?” I quizzed.
He looked at me with eyes that looked through me as if seeing something beyond me, “Me. I found me. And I like me”
These are words every psychologist loves to hear. We seem to think that this change occurred because of us.
“I’m not sure I understand how you went from trying to connect with someone and finding “me?” I said.
“All this time I tried using an old thought process when it was the new thought process that kept telling me to remain on course.” he said.
“Now, I’m really lost,” I said.
“I’ve changed. Not the core me but the sharp edges. I see things for not only what they are right now but what they will be later.”
“Still confused,” I added.
“The women here are so angry. I can feel the anger. Those that aren’t angry believe in weird stuff.”
“What kind of weird stuff?”
“They believe in the unbelievable. They talk about energy fields but can’t define energy. They interpret the Bible the way they see fit. And I avoid their beliefs but I don’t tell them. I just sit among people and have no one to talk with that is rational. They insist on being ‘right.'”
Earlier we had discussed the angry single women in Cuenca in great detail. What he appeared to be challenging currently was that he was lonely by choice. He accepted people but their belief so differed from his that he would rather remain alone.”
“I found two women who had the same temperment as me.”
“And what happened?”
“That’s it. I know now, at this time, that it would not work. Besides the usual issues in a relationship these ladies brought fear of a relationship. They made demands for perfection. They didn’t call it perfection. But you had to believe and feel certain things. Things they wanted. You couldn’t just be you.”
“How does this solve your loneliness?” I asked.
“I guess it doesn’t But I am comfortable with being alone rather than ever lose me again.”
“Do you believe you are right?”
“I gave up trying to be right years ago. I just want to be content.”
This proved the patient who taught the doctor. I learned much in the way of senior romance. I found his angry woman theory to hold merit. I also found that seniors do best when they recognize the changes in their social needs. They replace security with understanding, sex with communication, activity with alone time. I also think this is different than in the U.S. When you don’t admit these changes you revert to a previous failed thought process. I will review these thoughts in the future.