Jumping back in to the dating pool after you've turned 60 may not be as nerve-wracking as you think. Even if the last time that you went on a date was before the Internet even existed -- or it was when guys asked girls out in person and not through a text or call from a cellphone -- you can still connect with a potential partner.
Meet and Greet
Finding an appropriate place to meet a potential partner may not seem as simple as it was when you were younger. While at 22 you could go to the local bar and meet someone, at 62 the same social scene may not have any appeal. Places such as church and community centers provide social situations that may have a potential dating pool that meets your needs or matches your interests. Another option is to ask friends or family members to fix you up with someone who they think would suit you. If you're more adventurous, go on a group tour, trip or cruise to find someone who enjoys the same things that you do.
An advantage to dating in this new world is that now you can make a romantic connection without leaving your house. Online dating can open up a world of options, allowing you to browse and choose from dates who match your specific requirements, needs and interests. Some sites specifically cater to more mature adults or allow you to search ads by age. That said, you should always remain cautious when meeting people online. Never agree to go to someone's home or give out personal, identifying information and always let someone close to you know where you'll be.
You've met that special someone, but she's not exactly from your generation. While you might have more in common with someone who is also 60 or more, don't count out the chance for love just because a potential partner is a decade -- or more -- younger than you. Keep an open mind and look for someone with whom you can truly connect. If you've met someone who is 20 years your junior, take a look at who she is and how you truly feel about her before making a decision. Ask yourself if it's just a physical attraction, or if you like spending time together with your friends and you have common interests, suggests sex and relationship expert Pepper Schwartz, writing for AARP. If the answer to any of these questions is "no," you may need to keep looking.
By the time you reach midlife, it's likely that you've found activities and hobbies that you already enjoy. While you still have plenty of time to explore, dating after 60 may mean having to accept your partner's existing interests. For example, your new beau golfs every Saturday and Sunday morning, so don't expect him to magically switch his weekend activities and hit the antique flea market with you. Accepting that the two of you enjoy separate activities can help both of you maintain the individual identities that you've built up over the years.
Divorce or the death of a spouse are common reasons for men and women over the age of 60 to re-enter the dating scene. Whether you've recently split from your spouse or she passed away, dating again means reconciling how you feel about a new person entering your life. Leave your old baggage behind and open yourself up to new possibilities. Remind yourself that the new person in your life isn't replacing your spouse; instead, this is a new chapter in your life, not a re-enactment of your younger years.
View Singles Near You
- Jacob Wackerhausen/iStock/Getty Images