As a fifty-five-year-old divorced woman who wishes she was in a relationship, the hoopla over Valentine’s Day is always a hard pill to swallow. Can you give me suggestions about dating including how to get started and, if I find someone, how to proceed? I’d like to have a partner with whom I can go to dinner, watch the sunset, and share a lifetime of memories.
Looking For Love
As a woman who was married at twenty-one, divorced at forty-five, remarried at fifty-four, widowed at fifty-five, and remarried at fifty-seven, I have experience to share. You’ve come to the right person.
Here are my Top Ten Tips for Dating If You’re Over Forty:
1. Make a list of what you must have in a partner and what is absolutely unacceptable. Don’t spend an inordinate amount of time with someone whose values are not in–line with yours.
2. Approach dating with a sense of curiosity. Consider every date as an opportunity to learn something new about yourself and another person.
3. Come to terms with the fact that dating is messy. You might have to kiss a few frogs before you discover the prince.
4. Trust your instincts and believe a man when he tells you the negative things about himself. Don’t second guess your intuition.
5. Don’t bring your kids into the picture too soon. Even young adults can quickly become attached.
6. Consider how old is too old and how young is too young. This can be a wide range but, as you make your decision, consider the future.
7. If you think someone has serious marriage potential and you’ve been dating for a while, consider taking a trip together. Saturday night at the movies or dinner is one thing, 24/7 is quite another.
8. Most guys come with wife-baggage. If they are divorced, listen carefully to how they speak about their ex-wives. If they are widowers, consider how you might be assimilated into their family life. If they have never married, become very curious about why not.
9. Have fun. Dating need not be all about the mission. Don’t treat it like a warzone. Some guys might not be marriage material, but you can still enjoy their company.
10. Don’t give up hope. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard women say, “There just aren’t any good men out there.” Or, “All the marriageable ones are taken.” This is not true! Even if you don’t live in a large metropolitan area, new single men are coming onto the scene every day. People get divorced, partners die, men decide to “get out there.” Be open to possibilities, let your friends know you are available to meet single men they might know, check out online sites like match.com, join groups in which men participate. You can do this!