TESTIMONY. Divorced at 50, I take advantage of retirement to chain stories without a future

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“Like wine, love gets better with age!” jokes Josette*, 74. For Planet, this retired secretary recounts how she left her husband, her home and everything that connected her to her past life to enjoy her old age and refocus on herself.

“My husband Michel* and I had been together since we were 16. We got married four years later, and had children immediately after. It was a passionate love story, as you see in the most beautiful novels “, recalls Josette with a sweet nostalgia. Together, the two lovebirds had two children, and bought themselves a house in Essonne where they spent no less than thirty “wonderful” years.

Only here it is: approaching the age of fifty, Josette puts her life in question. “I had known only one man, only one job, only one house. I wanted to discover life from another angle, and I thought it was the right time to get started, now that my children were already adults and each one well settled in their respective lives”, says the retiree.

She therefore discussed with her husband her desires, her needs. “I was sure he would understand. And he did! We had already shared more than thirty years together and our relationship went far beyond that of husband and wife, he was my friend and my family. Nothing would change there”, says Josette.

Before continuing: “I was a little sad of course, and so was he. But we did absolutely everything together, from the divorce proceedings to the announcement to the family. I was lucky to having such understanding and caring loved ones. To this day, I hope I haven’t hurt him too much.” Fortunately, Michel found love very quickly and married a second time a few years later.

Once her fiftieth candle has expired, with her family and all the people who are dear to her, Josette packs her bags and moves to the countryside, in the Centre-Val de Loire. She buys a small house there with the money she had recovered from the sale of her family home, and decides to do some work…

“Very quickly, I loved retyping my house: redecorating everything, changing the paint, customizing the furniture, enlarging the rooms… I didn’t know I was such a handyman!”, smiles Josette. “I got to know myself a little better, I couldn’t sit still. I sold my house a year later, for more than the purchase price, and I bought some a new one that I retyped and sold again…”, she continues.

Between two moves, the fifty-year-old decides to register on a dating site. Then two. “I could say it was just to make friends… But that’s not true,” she laughs. “I wanted to meet new men, go on dates, have sex with a man and come home in the middle of the night…” says Josette.

Now 74 years old, Josette has not lost her joie de vivre. “I greatly appreciate my loneliness. And from time to time, I write to my somewhat special friends with whom I like to make love without being in love. We explore each other, we grow old together”, develops- she.

Dating sites for seniors no longer hold any secrets for her. “But I also like meeting new people: receiving bouquets of flowers on a first date, cooking good meals for my lovers… It’s refreshing, and I don’t want to get married at again. Never”, continues the retiree. “I also like to travel a lot, I sometimes find myself in love during stays organized by associations of retirees…”, she says.

“I’m a bit old now, but that doesn’t stop me from having sex, let alone with strangers!” She concludes, smiling.

Now domiciled in Occitania, Josette is still in contact with Michel. “His second wife unfortunately died, I supported him a lot in this ordeal. We see each other at least once a year, often in Île-de-France where he still lives”, confides Josette.

*Name has been changed