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To women over 32

I am 32. I tell my girlfriends that are younger than me to do all the things that I wish I had done.

Tell me what you wish you had done differently.

Sun. Jun 11, 12:11am

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go to grad school before having a child

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 12:34 AM

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Dumped hopeless relationships sooner rather than trying to get them to work

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 3:21 AM

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I'll be 49 soon. Honestly, I can't think of anythjing I would have done differently. Everything (good and bad) has made me who I am today. I didn't always think that way. There were times I had regrets but now I'm happy to have led the life I have led and happy for the life I have now.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 8:42 AM

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Yeah...I think making the mistakes is important in learning. We all have to figure things out in our own time.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 2:10 PM

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Wear sunblock

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 3:30 PM

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Not married so young and known myself better before I did commit to a relationship.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 4:46 PM

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Thank you all so much for posting and starting this thread. As a young person (20 yrs old) I love hearing what could make things easier and better. This thread is a blessing for the younger people!

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 5:30 PM

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I'm 37.

I'm thankful that my husband and I dated for five years before getting engaged. We really got to know each other during that time and now that we've been married for ten years, I can honestly say I'm still crazy about him. We're the best of friends and lovers. To all the young people -- don't be in a rush to get married.

The next thing I'm thankful for is that we waited four years until deciding to have children. During that time we traveled a bit. Had the opportunity to go to Europe and many places in the US. Had a wonderful time -- definitely recommend traveling before you have children and you are tied at home.

The one regret I have is that I didn't deal with my weight long ago. I have continually put it off as the last thing on my list, and of course, it's never gotten done -- until now.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 6:53 PM

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I wish I had gotten out of relationships I knew were not going anywhere much, much sooner than I did.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 7:31 PM

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Don't have sex too early in a relationship......your mother was right......wait...

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 9:10 PM

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Don't be so quick to get, join the peace corp, join the military, go to school, enjoy life, get to know yourself better, have lots of friends,......then think about settling down and starting a family if you wish.

Sunday, June 11, 2006, 9:14 PM

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I met my hubby at 18, married him at 27 and am going to celebrate my 14th anniversary this fall. ;-)

The only regret I have is that I haven't yet started a family. I wish I had started a few years earlier, so that my kids would be about the same age as some of my best friends...

However, my best friend from High school is getting married in a few weeks (for the 1st time, at 38 years young.) So, I hope that next year, when she and her hubby start a family, I will be able to start mine, too! :-)

As for other "regrets", I do regret not having started getting fit a few years earlier, I think my overall health would be much better now!

Another word of advice to the young...

Do NOT get yourself over your head into debt, be it a mortgages, credit cards, or your car, etc.... It is far easier to get into debt than to get out of it. My hubby & I learned the hard way... At one point, we didn't cut our credit cards, but we basically did not use any of them.... We tried to rely only on our Visa draft (check) card. That really helped us because we couldn't spend what wasn't in our account....

Having credit card or 2 is okay for emergencies, but make sure you are not putting yourself further and further into debt just because you have "free credit" available to you!

Monday, June 12, 2006, 5:49 AM

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Oops, I meant to say I married my hubby at 25, not 27 (I knew him for 7 years.) LOL

I'm 38 now...

Monday, June 12, 2006, 5:49 AM

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Doh! must be lack of sleep, I'm 39, not 38!

Monday, June 12, 2006, 5:50 AM

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above poster - hehe! so how old are you exactly and how long have you known your husband? lol

I wish I hadn't EATEN SO MUCH!! lol. No, seriously - I'd say my one regret is having an 'all you can eat' pregnancy. Now I'm struggling with the 30 extra pounds I put on during my pregnancy. It's all that harder to get off in your 30s I think.. at least it's never been this hard for me before!

Monday, June 12, 2006, 8:57 AM

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I wish I had stuck with my dance classes instead of ditching them when I started college! They really kept me in shape so instead I gained the Freshman fifteen, then another 10 when I was in a comfortable relationship and then another 10 for each of my two kids! I think I took about 10 years off from the dance classes but am now back to them and struggling to get a healthy, toned figure again!

Blozzom :-)

Monday, June 12, 2006, 10:29 AM

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I wish that I had lost 20 pounds when I was 18; I might have had a lot more fun! I also made a bad decision about which graduate program to do, but that's kind of hard to explain....

I'm 38 now and thinner than I was when I graduated high school, and having the time of my life. Not that my 20's were dull!! There are many more things that I'm glad I DID do -- I did some crazy stuff, and all of it turned out well. So I've just kept doing crazy stuff. :-)

Monday, June 12, 2006, 1:31 PM

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This is an awesome thread! I have to agree with all of you...

I am now 34. I got married at 23 and it ended in divorce 3 years later. I started dating around at 26 and had so much fun!

I then met my next serious boyfriend when I was 28 and he was 30. He waited 4 years before proposing. We too, are bestfriends and lovers. We were together 5 years before we got married. The most important thing I can stress for a healthy relationship is to have a stable foundation built on trust, honesty, love, compromise, patience.

Being 34, all of your advice is very helpful for me as well.... I am at the point trying to decide 'do i have children next? do I finish school next? Do I start a new career next?' One thing my husband and I agreed on before having kids is to travel , which is the number 1 advice we get from friends as well.

The debt advice is also a very good one! Avoid getting into debt as much as you can... I couldn't agree more with that one too! Good credit is everything! Employers sometimes check out your credit score before even offering you a job! Save, save, save as much money as you can!

Do not neglect your health - you only have one life and one body!

Monday, June 12, 2006, 1:43 PM

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i'm 37 now...

i wish i had held true to my belief that "it's what inside that counts" more often than i did. i did many a stupid thing trying to attract the attention of the "hot guy" and really lost out, i think, on some substantial relationship opportunities. of course, i did learn valuable lessons, but i think those were lessons of heartbreak that i did not HAVE to go through...

Monday, June 12, 2006, 2:30 PM

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Hehe, yeah, I'm 23 and about to marry my perfect match - a big dork! I learned in college that the hot, "cool" guys know that they are, and so they're not very nice! I grew up kinda young, but have no regrets in terms of love life - I've done everything I'd want to do! Now I get to make my life with my best friend, and we get to grow up together!! (We're 2 years out of college, so not babies, but not really grown-ups either). And we'll get a number of quality years together to travel, etc., before we start feeling pressure to start a family.

Career-wise, I have no idea! I hope when I'm 32, I'm not making a list of career regrets!! I have a good job though...

Monday, June 12, 2006, 5:12 PM

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Get to know yourself. Then be true to what you know.

Take opportunities that come your way. Don't be rash, but recognize that there are times in your life that can't be repeated--from high-school years, college years, pre-married years, pre-children years. I don't advocate procrastinating anything that matters, and that includes marriage. But in those years before you've found the right person, time, and place, don't spend all your time looking--spend it living.

There are a lot of things that seem relatively harmless, but if you know of more than a handful of people who are trying to quit them, *don't start.* So many people are desperately trying and often failing to quit smoking, drinking, or whatever...Take a lesson. If so many who have tried it can't quit it when they want to, it's not worth the risk.

Recognize that everything's a tradeoff. Traveling before children means maybe having less money later on which to show your children the world you got to see--and you ARE going to want to show them. It also means seeing the world sometimes before you have the maturity to really *see* it. Waiting until the children are ready means you might not get to travel all that much, because kids are expensive. Waiting until they are grown means raising them without the perspective traveling gives, and also means traveling when your body is less flexible about certain things and your comfort zone is a bit smaller than it maybe was when you were 20. OTOH, life experience, including the experience of having lived a while, enrichens travel in a lot of ways. Conclusion--there are a lot of ways to do this, each with its own gifts and each with its own drawbacks. Take the opportunities that come, when they come. Don't throw up any wall that doesn't need to be there.

Relationships matter more than anything in the end.

I turn 40 in three weeks. So far, no regrets about my family choices, even though I married young, even though I had my first child at 23. The only thing I might do differently is to take more opportunities during college. I whould have worked harder rather than fretting about how much things cost; I should have been more adventurous rather than worrying about every detail. I should have sought out the opportunities that were there.

When I was young, I was too insecure to live the adventures that captured my imagination. Now that I have the confidence, I haven't got the freedom and have to settle for smaller adventures (but I wouldn't have put off marriage and my kids, because relationships matter most in the end). I hope when the kids are flown, I will be able to take the chances I missed. (I have an aunt and uncle who living in Nigeria right now in a service organization, so there is hope!)

Monday, June 12, 2006, 9:07 PM

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Must add (to my long post above):

During the child years, give 100%. Let your life revolve entirely around what's best for them for those years. My folks did this, and Dad's comment to me recently is that the more you put into teaching and guiding kids while you have them, the quicker they learn not to need you. The things you put aside will always be there...and if you've done your very best by your children, you can go back to those things with enthusiasm and peace; but you can't get back the chances you don't take to help your kids become independent and strong and *not need you so much any more*. His view was, you do it halfway and you will be doing it for a very long time, or you can do it 100% for a relatively short time. I can't say I know this yet, nor can I say I've given 100% as well as my parents did. But I think my folks had it right.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 12:53 AM

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1:31 poster commenting on the 9:07 post:

About college: if the ONLY thing you learn in college is coursework, you are being gypped. BUT I see a lot of kids partying too much and missing huge opportunities as a result (I'm a prof.) (So what is partying too much? Well, I try to NOT stay up until sunrise 5 days a week. ) Take the courses you are really interested in, even if you might not get a perfect grade, and learn as much as you can! I see a lot of students hamstrung by requirements for their majors (the is the fault of the school more than the students) and not trying out new things. As someone who went through an enormous change of interests as a college student, I would say:

1) take lots of electives. Take a course overload to do it if you have to, pay for extra course hours if you have to, but if you always wanted to learn about Egyptian Art or whatever, take the course!

2) I hear students say all the time, "I need to take Course X to get in to grad school," or "I won't get into grad school unless I do the honors program in my major." This is NOT true. Getting into grad school has very little to do with what courses you've taken. So again, take those electives!! If you're an English major who has always been curious about physics, do it! It will be harder or impossible later.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 8:16 AM

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Kids and living

I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with the concept that you give 100% to your children. Children are added to your life, not the other way around. As a counselor (and parent), I see a lot of people that get to the end of their childraising years and have no concept of who they are as an individual, or as a couple. It's also a lot of pressure on your children to know that they are the center of your universe. You're supposed to be their strength and not the other way around.

That said, of course children should be a high priority! Far too many parents allow job and other things to take precedence when they shouldn't. Children should know that they are extremely important to their family, be secure in their safe place to fall in this world. They also need parents who are whole people, who can show them how to have strong relationships and take care of themselves as children and as adults.

My biggest lesson so far in life: Appreciate where you are at rather than being in a hurry to get to the next stage. There's something to learn wherever you are at in life, even if it's that you don't want to be there for too long. ;)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 10:49 AM

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To all women over 32

I wish i would of taken more interest in diet and exercise. I always dreamed of being an aerobic instructor

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 3:15 PM

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I didn't say "give 100% to your children," and there is a reason I didn't.

"During the child years, give 100%" refers to parenting, not to the children themselves. Parenting is the absolute priority; it requires 100%. That doesn't mean you automatically give 100% of your time, money, or attention directly to your children. In fact, I believe the marital relationship comes first (in order to be a good *parent*). But you do give 100% of your attention to the kind of parent you are being for your child, and the kind of parent they need you to be. You can't parent half-heartedly, absent-mindedly, impulsively, casually, or in your spare time when there's nothing better or more important to do. As you said, children are high priority--and whatever will help the child learn how to be whole, stable, have good relationships and be able to take care of themselves becomes the highest priority.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 10:23 PM

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I'm 37 and can honestly say I have no regrets. I was wild and experimented a lot, I didn't have many boundaries or restrictions and not much guidance. I did crazy things but I have come to understand that all these things good and bad have led me to where I am in life now and the woman I've grown into and I wouldn't change that for anything. Life is good, I'm grateful I'm still here.
I do wish that I had gone skydiving when I had the guts though.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 2:27 AM

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LOL 2:27 poster

i wish i had learned to snowboard when i was in my 20s and fearless!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 8:27 AM

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I have to parent 100% from a distance but I know I can do it. But I also give 100% at work and 100% to my hsuband and the person who doesn't get 100% is me. Now that I'm 42 - that has to change. I have a 2 yr old and I want to be there beyond his 18th birthday.

I wish my parents had done a better job with nutrition when I was a kid. I made really bad choices that are effecting me for the rest of my life - slowed metabolism being the worst and no matter how much exercise I do, I can't ever seem to boost it up. Being smart about your choices which often is a 'live and learn process" - that's my advice. You are never to young to learn from others and never to old to start learning something knew.

Education is a journey - not a destination - in every aspect of life.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 1:07 PM

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never stop learning - it keeps you young. just think of how kids act when they run across something new and interesting. try to have that attitude every day.

Thursday, June 15, 2006, 2:29 PM

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