Dating in your 60s and beyond

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Some older people are put off dating because they mistakenly believe that they are past it. The great news is that there really is no age limit on dating or falling in love. No matter your age, anyone can still find that someone special whether you’re over 40, over 50 or over 60 as long as they carry on believing it can happen and are willing to break out of their comfort zone and take a few risks.

Many people come to dating much later in life either because they have been divorced, bereaved or because they spent their younger life devoted to a career and never had time for romance. Not only will you find lots of potential matches in the same age group as you but older people often have a stronger likelihood of success than their younger counterparts.

Whatever the circumstances it is natural to want to share you life with someone and online dating is a great way of finding that special one. While the world of online communication is second nature to the younger generation it can be more difficult for older people and the online dating process might raise particular concerns. Here we address some of them.

Computer literacy

Online dating requires you to be online – to write a profile, pick up messages and get to know matches. Meeting people in this way means that the range of people you might meet is much wider than it would be in any other circumstances. Some older people may have difficulty using the internet, or are nervous of computers. This usually comes from nothing more than a lack of familiarity – younger people have used computers all their lives which is why they are proficient, but they can also be your best teachers. If you have a young relative ask them to help you with your computer or internet skills. They may be able to help you take and upload pictures (profiles with photos get a lot more responses than those without); set up an email account and be on hand if you get stuck.

All you need to get started with online dating is an email address, a profile (telling people a bit about yourself); regular access to a computer and support if you need it. Don’t worry if you haven’t got a young relative to help, or even if you don’t have a computer, public libraries often provide free internet access and usually run classes for to help you get started. After your initial classes (often called Silver Surfers) you can book time slots on the library computers and get started!

Safety

The media often carry stories about people being scammed or ripped off, both on and offline, making some people nervous of online dating. The great news is that – if you follow Guided Communication on eHarmony and the safety advice for meeting dates – internet dating is just as safe as meeting people in any other way. The people you talk to online will not know where you live, your phone number or even your email address until you give them this information – you don’t even have to use your full name if you don’t want to. You can keep online communication going until you are 100% certain that the person you are speaking to is genuine. And if you ever have any concerns you can report them to the dating site and simply stop all communication with that person.

Once you do decide to meet a date there is lots of advice here to make sure you stay safe. Most importantly remember that you are not on your own – customer support is always on hand to give you help, advice and support whatever you concerns. Your safety is our top priority so please use the support available. You can call us, for free, on 0800 028 0308.

Etiquette

The rules of dating online are slightly different to ‘regular’ dating and again there are lots of advice articles on the site to help you find your way. The main difference from traditional dating is that it is perfectly acceptable to be dating more than one person at a time – in fact it is encouraged as you will probably get lots of matches and it is good to meet up – if only for a coffee – with as many as possible to give you the best chance of finding someone you really connect with.

Other people’s opinions

Internet dating used to be seen as a bit embarassing but now that most of modern life is conducted online it is totally accepted that the internet is a useful tool for finding love. Enlist the help and support of your friends and family. You never know, your proactive and positive approach might encourage them to sign up too!


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