Senior Dating Tips For The Young At Heart
Dating is often considered a young person's game. Though finding love later in life happens every day, negative stereotypes and unfavorable statistics exist. They may tell us that getting married after 30 is unlikely and that dating after 40 and finding a life partner is even more improbable.
These pessimistic cultural outlooks can make dating when you're older harder than it has to be. Our own ticking clocks, nagging family members, and busy lives are among the factors that can push people in one of two directions when it comes to dating. They either treat dating like a job interview, constantly critiquing or pressuring their dates (and themselves) or avoid dating altogether. So, what does this mean for those over 50 but still young at heart? First, you might want to forget the naysayers and embrace the fact that the dating world has no age limit. At the same time, it may be helpful to equip yourself with tips that will help you meet someone new and embrace every romantic connection you encounter from here on out.
Dating As A Senior Tip #1: It's Not About Numbers But Knowing Yourself
The dating world isn't just for millennials, but there's something you may need to know: dating after 50 is different. But that may not necessarily be a bad thing. For one, young people tend to be age-prejudiced, while those looking to date after 55 might be a lot more flexible with numbers. A 45 year-old courting a 20 year-old might turn heads, but a relationship between someone in their late 50s and someone in their 70s may be more acceptable.
Instead of focusing on the person's actual age, you might be better off narrowing your focus to similarities in physical health and the type of activities they enjoy. If you're very active and enjoy going on hikes and traveling, you may want to look for a potential partner interested in being outdoors and going on trips. If you're a homebody who prefers to stay in with a glass of wine and a good book, physical activity (or lack thereof) may not be on the top of your list. Perhaps the key is knowing yourself and finding a complementary partner. If you're not sure where to start, consider creating a soulmate wish list to highlight the attributes that are important to you.
Dating As A Senior Tip #2: Focus On The Physical
Another thing that may deter some senior daters from finding love is concern about their appearance. Looks may matter to some people, but research shows that for those over 55, appearance takes a lower priority than common interests and activities. Still, most everyone wants to feel their best while jumping back into the dating game. You can boost your dating confidence and desirability with the following tips:
- Improve Your Physical Health Through Exercise. Like dating, exercise isn't just for young adults. Getting fit may help you feel better about yourself and improve your dating prospects. You might even meet someone at the gym while you're working on your fitness. A health club could be a good place to strengthen social bonds and work your way out of your shell if you usually shy away from social activities.
- Update Your Wardrobe. If you're unsure what styles, colors, and fit will work best for your body, you might consider asking someone. If you have a friend or family member (possibly someone of a younger generation) who has a good sense of style, you could take them shopping with you. Alternatively, you might find a helpful department store employee and ask for assistance. It may be beneficial to remember that you don't have to make drastic changes (unless you want to). Having a few solid, modern articles of clothing can make your dating confidence soar.
- Revamp Your Hair And Makeup. If you're embracing a new look as far as fashion goes, you might want to take it a step further and change up your hair and make-up. A fresh cut may be all it takes to embrace dating head-on for some. Others may want to consult a stylist for a color, style, or both. Many department stores offer free makeovers, so, if you're wanting to try some new makeup brands but don't know where to begin, consider heading to the nearest makeup counter.
Dating As A Senior Tip #3: Improve Your Outlook
Many senior daters find that once they have a good idea of what they are looking for and have spent some time improving their physical appearance, dating becomes easier. For others, there may be psychological hurdles that prevent them from embracing the dating scene and possibly finding love. For one, if you're over the age of 55, you may have been married before or been in serious relationships. Past hurts, losses, and concerns over children's feelings about dating again can all be challenges.
If you aren't sure if you're ready to date or have concerns about what the world has to offer as far as love goes, you aren't alone. In fact, this is one of the unique issues that arise with dating when you're older. Instead of ignoring or tackling these feelings alone, you might consider sharing your fears and doubts with a professional.
Dating As A Senior Tip #4: Put Yourself Out There
One question many seniors have about dating is, "Where will I meet someone?" Surely, it won't happen from the comfort of your couch unless you're dating online. If you're not sure where to meet quality partners, consider the following:
- Find Old Friends. Many people find love with people they knew in their youth. This was the case for long-lost sweethearts Marcella and Johnny Vick. They dated in the year 1950 but drifted apart, going on to marry other people and have children. After both of their spouses passed away, the former couple reconnected at a local reunion. In 2014, they married after 63 years apart. If you can't find any places in your area to reconnect, try social media. People of all ages are rekindling friendships (and more) with people they haven't seen in years through Facebook and other social media platforms.
- Join Senior Dating Groups. Once you're on social media, you can check out some of the senior dating groups found on Facebook. Search 'senior date' in the search bar, and hundreds of different groups may come up. As with other forms of online dating, you should always be cautious with meeting people online. Still, senior dating groups can be a good way to meet new people in your area or even across the country.
- Try New Activities. The bingo hall, ballroom dancing events, gardening clubs, senior travel groups, fitness classes, church groups, book clubs, and volunteering events can all be good places to meet someone new. If none of these options interest you, think about your interests and see if any local clubs/groups support the same hobbies.
Dating As A Senior Tip #5: Set Realistic Expectations
Another senior dating tip may have less to do with you and more to do with the world you're living in. The dating scene today might be much different than the one you encountered in your youth or even 10 or 15 years ago. Not every date will lead to marriage, and dating opportunities may not be traditional.
For one, dating is happening online. If you're tech-savvy, this might not be an issue. Still, these platforms may be built to meet young adults' needs, not the young at heart. Even those online dating sites that market themselves towards an older age group don't always do the best job catering to the specific needs of individuals looking for love later in life.
Then there's also the added risk of being 'catfished,' or taken advantage of by someone falsely representing themselves online. To avoid this, you might want to remember that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
That doesn’t mean you can't try online dating. The 50+ age group is the fastest-growing demographic on Match.com, and they make up around 20 percent of the site's users. Still, you might want to enlist the help of a trusted friend or family member when creating your profile. For the best results, consider adding a recent picture and keeping things honest (i.e., no lying about age, height, weight, etc.).
Dating As A Senior Tip #6: Know How To Turn A 1st Date Into A 2nd
Dating, as a senior or otherwise, should be fun. You may not want to put too much pressure on yourself or the other person. Instead, consider focusing on having interesting and exciting experiences. If it leads to more, great. If not, you can keep having fun or work on building a stronger connection with someone else. Not every first date will lead to a second one, but there are some ways you can increase the chance if that's something you want.
- Plan An Interesting Date. Great dates start with planning. Restaurants and the movie theater are go-to date spots, but they may not be the most creative. Other options could include the beach, concerts, museums, art galleries, public parks, dance lessons, paint and sip events, bingo, and wine tasting. Making sure that your first time out suits your date's interests might help earn you a second date.
- Avoid Touchy Topics. When returning to the dating game, it could be just as important to know what not to do. Although you want to be yourself on a date and come off as open and honest, some topics may be best discussed later on. Talking point "no-gos" include:
- Your Ex Or Past Marriage(s). Make sure your date is your focus, not a ghost from the past. If your date asks specific questions like how long you have been divorced/widowed, it's okay to answer. But you may want to avoid bringing up the past yourself or dwelling on the topic.
- Family, Medical, Or Money Issues. The fact that you're dating again might be an issue for your children. Plus, living on a pension or with a chronic disease can be hard. However, these may not be the best issues to bond over on a first date. Complaining about families and bringing up money issues could fall into the “too much information” category.
- Political And Religious Issues. Politics and religion are topics that can ruin a date faster than most others. Having similar religions and political beliefs can make a strong connection, but these topics may not be first-date appropriate.
There may be plenty of topics that are fair game on a first date, though. Specific suggestions include passions and dreams, your bucket list, and things that make you laugh. As long as the topics are positive and you're listening more than you talk, the conversation should go well.
Embrace These "Senior Date Do's." Now that you know what not to do on a first date, you may be wise to hone in on the things that could make your first date successful.
- Dress Comfortably And Smart. You may want to pull out some of the new pieces that you purchased when preparing to date again. But it might also be advisable to wear appropriate attire for the particular date you're going on. On a hiking trip, heels could be a disaster, for instance, as could a suit for a stroll down the beach.
- Look For Red Flags. If your date is throwing out red flags during dinner, or something doesn't seem right with their backstory, consider moving on to a different suitor. Dating at an older age can be difficult, but it doesn't need to be desperate. If your date doesn't seem like a good fit or you're not having fun, you may want to trust your gut.
- Be Confident And Show Your Date That You're Interested. If you've enjoyed yourself and you want to go on a second date, you might consider saying so. You might find that your date is feeling the same way. Confidence and the ability to go after what you want can be attractive qualities.
- Don't Rush Into Intimacy. Sex on the first date isn't unheard of, but it can be risky. For many people, rushing into intimacy too soon can stifle growing feelings and end a would-be relationship before it even begins. It can also be dangerous since HIV and other STDs are rapidly spreading in all age groups, including those over 50. Instead of focusing on the physical/sexual aspects, you might want to take your time to get to know your date on a deeper level.
If you still feel hesitant about dating again, you might want to consider speaking to a professional relationship counselor. These types of counselors work with individuals as well as couples and can help you prepare for the challenges and opportunities dating presents.
Seniors may experience certain barriers to traditional counseling, though. For example, you may have a medical condition that prevents you from driving, or your schedule may already be packed with doctors’ appointments. Online counseling may present a more feasible alternative. With online counseling, you can access counseling right from home, so no commute is required. It can also be more flexible since appointments are available around the clock.
This type of counseling is just as legitimate and effective as in-person counseling, too. A recent study confirmed that counseling delivered via videoconferencing was associated with positive outcomes not just for individuals, but for couples and families as well.
Dating at any age can be challenging and even overwhelming, but it can also be exciting and energizing. Through self-reflection, by focusing on improving your physical health and image, setting realistic expectations, and getting some professional help if you need it, you'll be ready to date again. Get started with Regain today and put your best foot into the dating pool.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
Does dating get harder as you get older?
Dating can get harder as you get older, but there is also a greater chance of discovering a partner who is truly right for you. The dating scene for teens and people in their early 20s comprises individuals who may be immature and unable to understand how much of a commitment goes into a long-term relationship and other factors. As you get older, you may find dating to become an easier task.
The dating scene for adults over the age of thirty and beyond consists of more experienced people in the world. In senior living, you come to understand yourself more. You learn about what you like, dislike, and understand how you socialize with other people. Furthermore, you may also have created wonderful friends who can provide valuable dating advice. As such, your criteria for choosing a partner is more than just if they like you on a surface level. The criteria can include your potential partner’s hobbies, personality, and how they interact with you. Thus, the only way for you to find out if somebody is truly right for you is by understanding who you are as a person. You can do this by listening to dating advice from people you trust deeply as they know things about you.
When you become older, you have more experiences, both good and bad. Perhaps your dating process was far different from how you approached dating in your senior life when you were younger. So you learn from these past experiences, incorporate valuable dating advice or life advice that others have given you, and use your knowledge to choose a partner best for you.
How long should seniors date before marriage?
Senior women and men should spend quality time with each other before they consider marriage. By the time somebody reaches their senior life, there is a chance that they were married or had a serious relationship, but, for one reason or another, they are now single. When thinking about dating senior women and men as one of many single seniors, the first thing that you can consider is making sure that you enjoy the time you spend with your partner.
For some people, the idea of marrying right after they meet is tempting, but before committing seriously to a relationship, instead, listen to advice for seniors and dating advice from friends and family. Advice for seniors differs from receiving dating advice as a young person. You are not the same person as you were in your twenties. And this is a great thing. As an older person, you know yourself better than anyone. Therefore, the best advice for seniors is to follow your heart. If you believe that a partner is a right person for you, do not rush into marriage. Instead, be patient and spend your time with them.
Can you fall in love at age 70?
No matter your age, you can fall in love with anybody, even someone in their senior life at the age of 70. Various dating sites can help you become active on the dating scene and find somebody with whom you can spend your life-loving. You can even use mobile applications to expand your search for dating services to advise someone perfect for you. If you still find trouble finding somebody right for you, consult your family and loved ones about dating advice. They can help you understand who you are as a person and even point you to helpful dating services.
What is the best dating site for people over age 60?
Senior dating sites are abundant online, with hundreds of online daters, making the process of dating easier and convenient for people who do not want to leave their homes because of the pandemic. It is important to be aware of online daters since they can easily create a false persona online for their amusement at the cost of your well being. Below is a list of a few senior dating sites that are trustworthy and a good way to find genuine and kind-hearted online senior women and men daters:
Through these dating services, you can find someone who wants to meet with you and spend time together. You can always ask your family and loved ones for advice for seniors, including travel tips for a first date or other advice tips. The dating scene may change from age group to age group, but dating advice also improves, influencing your thinking about dating for many single seniors.
Should you remarry after age 60?
Your decision to remarry after age 60 depends on how you feel about committing to another relationship. According to a PEW Research study, cohabiting adults ages 50 and older increased by 75% from 2006 to 2016. These results show that many people in their senior life continue their life dating by not marrying. Essentially, many seniors are simply satisfied where they are with their partner and participating in the dating scene. But if you want to remarry, then there are a few factors to consider:
- Financial situation
- Whether you marry somebody or keep them close to your life, the issue of financials may come up during your relationship. As such, you may have to be comfortable with your personal and financial information. If you want to learn more about how to be open with others concerning your financial situation, you can consult seniors' advice from your closest family or friends.
- Your partner may already have kids of their own, or vice versa. For this situation, you can consult with your partner about how they should interact with your kids. If your kids are young, you can consider if your partner should help them with homework or take them to events. If they are older, good advice for seniors is to ask them what they’re comfortable with.
What are the rules of dating after age 40?
The simplest and only rule of dating after age 40 is being honest and straightforward with your partner. In your senior life, if you find a person you want to spend the rest of your life with, the best advice for seniors is to find somebody who loves you for both your strengths and weaknesses.
The dating scene for seniors is vast and filled with people who are also looking for an honest partner. After you find a person that seems genuine, respect them by being honest about yourselves to them. During dates inspired by travel tips, talk to them about your experiences, both the good and bad. You know you found the right person if they accept you for who you are. You did not find the right person if you have to pretend to be somebody else.
The dating scene includes many people who are trying to scam you out of your money or belongings. But there are just as many people on the dating scene trying to find the one person who can listen to them about their struggles without judging them or looking down on them.
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