Dating later in life

SeniorsPeople are living longer, a reality that can be traced to a number of factors, including advancements in medicine and greater dissemination of information regarding preventive health care.

As people live longer, some may outlive their significant others and ultimately find themselves once again interested in sharing experiences with a special someone. Seniors ready to re-enter the dating pool may find that things are quite different from what they experienced as naïve teenagers or young adults. Dating used to be about hanging out with friends and meeting people at shared events, such as school dances or work parties or even while enjoying a night out with friends. Nowadays, dating often begins in cyberspace. This can be confusing and anxiety-inducing for adults who didn’t grow up with technology guiding their every move.

According to a report in The Atlantic, more than one-third of baby boomers are not currently married, and this generation has had higher rates of separation and divorce and lower rates of marriage than the generations that preceded them. Many boomers have years ahead of them to devote to new relationships. Here’s what they may want to know before navigating twenty-first century dating waters.

• You’re not in this alone. While online dating may be portrayed as a young person’s game, plenty of older adults are now finding connections online. In fact, many different dating apps are geared toward the senior set, including SeniorMatch, eHarmony, Singles50, OKCupid, and Silver Singles, among others.

• You have more time for fun. As a senior, you may have more time to devote to recreation and leisure. This can be a great opportunity to get out and meet someone who shares your passions and interests.

• Online dating has its advantages. While online dating apps and websites may have certain things working against them, particularly if their algorithms for pairing people are not fine-tuned, they also can be helpful. Online dating can expand social circles beyond local neighborhoods or even states, provinces or countries. You’re casting your net over a much larger body of water. Furthermore, dating app profiles typically spell out exactly what another person is seeking, which can save seniors from having to revisit awkward dating moments from years past.

Seniors may have to navigate new waters in modern dating. But with a good mindset and a little persistence, it is possible for seniors to find a special someone in cyberspace.