Tips on dating after 50

Speaking of uncomfortable territory, if you’re in your 50s, you’ve likely had your fair share of relationship ups and downs over the years.

While it can be tempting to talk about past relationships (especially if your date takes the conversation there first), resist the urge, especially on the first date.

Joining a new group or trying a new activity may help you meet potential dating partners more organically if you’re not crazy about the idea of meeting people online.

Join a wine appreciation group, fitness class, or a book club.

In one survey, 39% of respondents said they met their spouse or significant other through friends. Just as you hope your date will listen as attentively as you share about yourself, he deserves the same in return.

So, you meet someone—online, through a mutual friend, at the grocery store, wherever. It’s easy to nervously ramble on a first date, unintentionally hijacking the conservation or, conversely, clamming up and scarcely saying a word all night. Listen attentively, take turns talking, and manage the conversation, if needed, by politely interjecting or segueing into another topic if he’s talking too much or if the conversation veers into uncomfortable territory.

You’ve lived and learned, and you’re probably more confident than ever about what you want and don’t want in a relationship. However, also remember how hard we can be on ourselves.

Getting back into the dating scene after decades of marriage or a long dating hiatus can feel overwhelming. You may be thinking “ no—that’s for kids.” Not so fast. Use the classic dating strategies: introductions through friends, blind dates, meeting through activities (work, recreation, religious, etc.), and plain old serendipity. Through them, you'll probably meet women who also enjoy them, women who might become friends — and eventually, maybe more. So the odds are in men's favor — and women know it. Try to correct misinformation, or at least be prepared to prove that you're not the escaped serial killer who shares your name. Photos increase men's response rate 40 percent — for women, photos triple it! Beyond saying, "You're really cute and you live near me," you can add that like the woman you're contacting, you also play tennis and enjoy jazz. Evolving social mores and greater economic independence among women are some of the factors behind this phenomenon. Your great sense of humor, your enviable shapely legs, your confident public speaking ability, your athletic prowess.Yet, just because you’re not necessarily looking for marriage doesn’t mean you don’t want to date or have a romantic partner. Remind yourself often of all the reasons you’re a great catch, especially as you’re navigating the uncertain terrain of the dating world.

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