online dating in your forties, fifties & beyond
BROADEN YOUR HORIZONS
..ALGORITHMS DON’T WORK
Studies have proven algorithms just don’t work, so stop filtering your search so tightly you turn up next to nothing.
Expand the distance parameter; chances are your match doesn’t live next door.
Don’t get too caught up in “is he a dog or a cat” person, does he like jazz or if he’s shorter than you.
Expand your desired age group too! You might be looking for a relationship, but in the meantime, you could just turn up a younger lover or vice versa.
If you keep your options loose, you will turn up many more men who bring something different to the table! After all, perhaps you’re reading this because your previous searches haven’t worked.
CURATED BEST SELF
..A PROFILE IS NOT A PERSON
Remember when you’re creating a profile for a dating app it’s a curated best self, consider the fact your profile may no completely convey who you are as a person. Don’t LIE! Don’t lie about your age or use old pictures where you weighed less. This will only cause anxiety if and when you actually have a date with someone. Believe me, it will be awkward and a waste of time for everybody.
If you present yourself as precisely who you are with confidence, using clear and current photos (no filters) your profile will do well.
Don’t write an essay or appear snarky or cynical, keep your bio short, perhaps show some humour. Be aware many men say absolutely nothing at all (I’m always cautious of these profiles because I place so much value on words. Still I try to take my own advice about keeping my search open.)
DON’T PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET
..JUST SWIPE RIGHT
I know many women agonise over swiping right on Tinder. Chances are, out of thousands of profiles you might only swipe right on one. Then you probably fully project your expectations on this one man. If he doesn’t respond within your time frame (if he responds to a match at all) or in the way you want him to you’re irked.
You might be interested to know many men swipe right on pretty much EVERYONE then they see who they match with. Do the same! This is actually a pretty good ploy; it’s going to give you more matches and the ability to pick and choose. Remember just because you match doesn’t mean you have to chat with all of them. See what rises to the top and or reaches out.
Joining Tinder gold for a month can also take the guesswork out of swiping as well, it will show you the men who have already swiped right on you, so if you do the same you know, you’ll be a match.
A DATE IS NOT A JOB INTERVIEW
..LEAVE ROOM FOR SPONTANEITY
Get the basics out of the way before you go on a date. Yes, yes men will generally harp on that they don’t want endless emailing or texting back and forth, that it’s all about ‘the chemistry’ and you won’t find me disagreeing with this BUT, you need to ask the pertinent questions before you commit your time to an actual date. Don’t be afraid to do this over the phone, it's mandatory for me to have a phone chat before a date. Not only to hear his voice but to gauge humour and see if there is any kind of flirting factor happening. If not a date can often seem like a job interview, which doesn’t leave much room for fun.
It’s uber important to make sure your date seemed interested in knowing more about you, both of you should be walking away from the date knowing a lot more about each the other…quid pro quo and all that.
Oh and to show I’m not entirely heartless, It’s also good to remember that your intoxicating beauty might make your date a bit nervous in the beginning so cut him a little slack and redirect the conversation if you absolutely have to.
PLACE VALUE ON YOURSELF
..DON’T CALL HIM IF HE DOESN’T CALL YOU
Okay, this is a good one to continually keep in mind! A man should place as much value on you as you do yourself. Of course, I’m presuming here you value yourself highly, indeed if you intend to date online your self-esteem needs to be tiptop. If not I would definitely be working on that before you embark, the better your self-esteem, the more you value yourself, the more you will command respect. If a man says, he’s going to call or make contact and doesn’t don’t make it too easy for him. This will only set a pattern for the future, and come on; really, we want to date a man who does what he says he’s going to do.
A BIRD IN THE HAND
..IS THE GRASS GREENER
It seems to me there’s a bunch of men out there who want their bird AND both the birds in the bush. We’re all used to seeing the attached/married mans ‘looking for fun’ profile but there are a few new players in town. The Poly-amorous and the Ethically Non-Monogamous Man keep popping up more and more. I’m not sure what is ethical about being non-monogamous aside from saying you don’t want to be monogamous. Confused? Yes me too. Is the grass greener? Is it actually really possible to achieve these kinds of relationships successfully? You never know, it might be just what you are looking for. If you want to dip your toe in the water, I would advise you ask all the questions on your mind about how this would actually work before diving in.
GHOSTS, CATFISH AND OTHER MEN TO AVOID
Lastly, I thought I would touch on the men to avoid.
Catfish, have you seen the TV show Catfish? You have? Ok, then you know what I’m talking about. Someone is pretending to be someone else, I see it all the time. Pictures of models and movie stars stolen purported to be Joe from Paddington or Ben from Middle Park. Seriously, Joe and Ben, I’m not sure if you think all women were born yesterday but if you are looking for a pen pal you’re never going to meet, then there are other places for that.
Ghosts? Hmmm, I’ve had a number of those.. A match eventuates to a first date, seemed nice enough, I thought they seemed interested, then nada…zilch, zip.
Honestly, don’t get upset I seriously think it's probably something you’ve said during the date like “I’m looking for an emotional connection before I have sex with someone” don’t stress you probably dodged a bullet.
Next, you know when I mentioned Tinder Gold up there? Well, it also allows you to remove your age and your locality. So beware the profiles that don’t show this, yes some of them are real men in your vicinity who, for whatever reason, don’t want to admit to their age or where they live. In my experience, it's older looking for younger women, or younger looking for older..either way hiding age opens the doors to viewing women's profiles they might not see otherwise.
Mostly they’re scammers, probably on the other side of the world curating a perfect Tinder profile to begin an online romance with you to steal your heart then your money. If you’ve listened to Kate Langbroeks Barb on the radio you’ll be aware of the online dating scammers she’s turned up and exposed.
Lastly, if you’re a little nervous a man isn’t who he says he is don’t be afraid to do a little digging, I don’t mean you should go the full stalk, but there is no harm in checking Facebook or LinkedIn to see if someone is real. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve found a man lying about his name; there is never any good reason why a man does this.
Oh and ladies please remember if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck; it’s a duck.
I'd like you to follow the link to this Ted Talk as well, its about a great concept "The Zero Date."
All the best on your adventures
*Update January 2020, In the end I decided online dating wasn't for me, I certainly kissed a thousand frogs, didn't find my prince so I'm not even sure you should take any of my advice up there!
I continue to put time into myself, family and friends. I'm not done with the idea of finding love but at this point it's not a priority.
*Update May 2023, not only am I not online dating, I haven't dated at all in many years..since moving back to Tassie my life is full. I'm about to turn 61, am I done with the idea of finding love? Well, never say never but the odds at this stage are low....ask me again in a few years eh?