I’m turning 40 without a partner, children, or parents -- and I’m free

I turn 40 years old today. If I live about as long as my relatives have, this means my life is probably more than half over. There’s nothing unusual about turning 40; people do it all the time. But unlike many of my friends, I “lack” three things at this stage of my life: parents, a partner and children.

That my mom, dad and stepmother all died when I was in 20s doesn’t exactly make me a helpless orphan. Still, I was much younger than almost anyone I knew to lose all of my parents. It still makes me a little weird even at 40 to be nobody’s child. But I am certainly not unusual in being single; most adults in the United States now are not married. And not having kids isn’t so odd considering my sexual history as a gay man.

But it is highly unusual to lack parents and a partner and kids at my age.