That’s when I began to think he was the one.” Her advice: “Keep dreaming. The only drawback is that I wanted children, but I’m close with my friends’ kids. And now there are many options for having kids in your 40s.
You shouldn’t have to settle for anyone.”How it happened: “When I was younger, I thought I'd be married by my 20s.
‘There are many men out there who are bored with having meaningless affairs and who want to settle down and have children too,’ he says.
‘If a guy is going out with a woman in her late 30s, it is hardly going to be a surprise that she might also want children.’With that in mind, I decided to be honest about my desire for marriage and children — with surprising results.
Whenever I was between boyfriends in the past, I would just enjoy life until another man came along — through work, mutual friends or our eyes meeting across a crowded room.
But when I phoned a dating agency eight months ago, everything had taken on a new sense of urgency. ‘Haven’t you found yourself a husband yet, Bridgey? But don’t look desperate — men hate that.’ I went speed-dating, online-dating, wine-tasting dating, quiz-dating and dinner-dating.
I turned up a few minutes late for one date to find that the guy had already ordered and eaten dinner without me, and I booked myself on a climbing holiday with 14 fit men, only to discover halfway up the highest mountain in North Africa that they were all married.
While I did meet some really nice men, it was certainly not at the tortuous round of singles events, at which there were always more women than men and everyone had a sad, resigned look in their eyes.
I felt that to continue going out with him would have been unfair to both of us, so I ended our relationship. Many people — including my mother and best friend — accused me of being too fussy, and said that I should stick with Simon, as he ticked so many boxes.
‘Men want someone who is fertile but who doesn’t want children just yet,’ she continued.