I was 50 years old and hadn’t been to bed with a woman for four years. I
had no women friends. I looked at them as I passed them on the streets or
wherever I saw them, but I looked at them without yearning and with a
sense of futility. I masturbated regularly, but the idea of having a
relationship with a woman— even on non-sexual terms—was beyond my
imagination. I had a 6 year old daughter born out of wedlock. She lived
with her mother and I paid child support. I had been married years before at
the age of 35. That marriage lasted two and one half years. My wife
divorced me. I had been in love only once. She had died of acute
alcoholism. She died at 48 when I was 38. My wife had been 12 years
younger than I. I believe that she too is dead now, although I’m not sure.
She wrote me a long letter each Christmas for 6 years after the divorce. I
never responded. . . .