I always wonder what people mean when they say that you don't have a family. You have parents, siblings, relatives and friends you'd consider family. If you are a parent figure to an orphan they consider you like a mother. Having children isn't a guarantee of anything. I have a neighbor who has dementia and all her children are abroad. Other children are irresponsible, they do not help their parents much. Children are not a retirement plan. So get married and have kids for the right reasons, because you met someone who you want to share your life and genes with. Not out of fear. So many people especially women are so miserable in their marriages but they are afraid to 'not have a family'. There's no greater loneliness than being in a relationship that is unfulfilling with someone you don't love and respect just to keep up appearances and look like you have someone. It's soul crashing and it destroys your self esteem and self respect. Most people put the cart before the horse. I want a family so lemme find someone to fit the role. Instead of I met someone I love and respect so much and vice versa that I want to have a family with them and spend the rest of my life with them. Maybe I may have been happier with a family but I just never met anyone that I really wanted to take that leap with and that is fine too. I am not going to force it to happen bcz I need a family. I have a family. I have people who love me and would do anything for me that's why I am not as desperate as most women when it comes to this having a family issue. I am satisfied. A hungry or starving will eat anything. I am picky because I am content, if I wasn't I would never decline any advances and proposals. I have been in situations where I decline a marriage proposal and the man is shocked that someone my age can say no. Already that one alone tells you that I am not desperately unhappy and lonely the way people like to paint single people like they're all alone in the world, you can be very married and be all alone in the world than even a single person, how many suicides have you heard of ati I killed myself because I was single and felt so lonely, it's usually married folk afraid of being alone who kill each other when they break up or kill their kids, this thing of fear of not living upto society's expectations of having a family is why people kill themselves and each other when they break up meaning they would rather be miserable than to be by themselves. I know both sides of the coin and nothing is worth being in an unfulfilling relationship for, not children, not marriage, not money. The biggest secret to happiness in life is always be true to yourself. I haven't always had that clarity but thank God that in my time of ignorance I didn't fall into a ditch and get married or have kids with someone that wouldn't have been good for me in the long haul. I consider myself very blessed. Than many people with the said families. I am in good health. I don't have ulcers bcz I am forcing myself to stay in an unfulfilling relationshit just so I can have a semblance of family. Family is supposed to love you, bring joy in your life and take care of you and be there for you, a pillar in your life, not give you ulcers and stress . Just do a survey of married women, many have ulcers that they never had before the relationship or marriage. To some people it's a price that they are willing to pay, to me nothing is worth my health and peace of mind. Not so called family. Not kids.
As for success, I consider success joy, good health and not lacking. Some jobs take all your time, you can't spend time with yourself and the people that you love, just for people to see that you are 'successful'.
We have seen people we thought were successful and had it all commit suicide. Being true to yourself matters most. Alot of people you'd consider successful in societal standards are alcoholic and extremely unhappy. It's not a one size fits all, it's you to define what success means to you. You don't have to follow anyone's script.