Friday, April 1, 2016

Senior Dating Advice - Be happy with yourself while keeping your eyes open for a mate

On Life and Love after 50 Newsletter                               March 4, 2016

By Tom P Blake
Senior Dating Advice: Be happy with yourself while keeping your eyes open for a mate

Last week, in addition to the trip-to-Cuba article (to read in more detail about Cuba, see link at bottom of today's column), the newsletter included an email sent by a mid-70s widow whose husband had died of cancer. Subsequently, she met two men. One she met online who now lives in a distant nursing home so they get together using taxis.
The other man she met in her retirement community. She thought he was wonderful but heard he had abused his wife.
She concluded, “No one could match the generosity and competence of my husband. Should I continue to look around or just be happy within myself?”
I asked Champs if they had advice for her. As always, several of you came through with sage comments. Here is what 11 Champs (four men, seven women) shared:
Liz said, “Indulge me while I take on the cynic's role: This woman had a good marriage to a good man, and she should be happy she had that. Now it's time for her to be happy with herself. Like her, I am mid-seventies, well-preserved and active. I had a 10-year marriage and have been single for 41 years, all the while relatively happy with myself. Tell her to not be greedy, and leave the remaining eligible males for the likes of someone like me. She had her turn -- now it's mine. Facetiously, yours.”
Art: “She should continue looking. She probably has a long life ahead of her, to not pursue it would be a terrible waste. I started dating after my wife passed away from Alzheimer’s disease in 2007. I have been in several relationships, and now in a committed relationship with a woman seven years my junior. My life could not be better, and she could likely find the same satisfaction for herself.”
Maria shared, “My advice: First, be happy within yourself, know who you are and never let that be compromised. Second, envision the perfect mate and invite him into your life - then go looking with no expectations, but enjoy the looking - he may show up when you least expect it. Sometimes we need to get out of our own way before things that we desire fall into place.”
Dr. John: “My advice to the woman: do both, be happy within yourself and continue to look. I don't think the two are mutually exclusive.”
Mindy (addressing the widow): “At your age—mid 70s—anyone you find will get health issues in the near future. Live life to the fullest—you are vibrant and healthy. If a man comes along you want to spend time with…great! But why only one guy? Enjoy the variety. Join groups that are active, travel with friends, enjoy your life.”
Joel: “This one's easy. Make sure your information is accurate about ‘what many residents say.’ Hearsay and gossip may not be accurate and complete. 
"If you are satisfied the abuse stories are correct, keep looking and be happy within yourself... the two are not exclusive. You might also examine your statement ‘no one could match my husband.’ 
"As long as you cling to this nostalgia, you are unlikely to find a new mate and, if you are happy, that's a good outcome.”
Joanne, “The lady needs to keep these gentlemen as friends and nothing more. Life is complicated enough. Why not keep things simple and enjoy?”
Manu: “An educated woman doesn’t need an answer, just confirmation to move on. She presents herself as an active senior. Give a try and nix to both men.”
Sid, “OK, advice for the widow in the retirement home...I work in a retirement home full time at age 72, so I know a lot about them. Number one, if she is as she describes herself then my advice is to move out (of the retirement home) as fast as she can. A condo complex that has younger people is really what she needs.  
“At her age and state of health, she could live in that place another 30 years and watch as people around her die off, now how cool is that? People move into those places to die not to live, those places are holding pens for death. Number two, she should get on and begin to attend events in her area that fit her interest.”
Ceil: “This is a sad situation. She should put her own priorities first. The older man in the faraway nursing home; she should stay in touch with him and visit periodically as she can be an important friend to him at a hard time in his life.
"And regards man #2, rumor and hearsay could be wrong, though she’s right to be concerned. What about asking him to have coffee with her in a PUBLIC PLACE (don’t back down on that). Tell him you heard he abused his wife, etc. Tell him you are concerned about it. See what he has to say. Don’t make any snap decisions about him. Stay away unless you feel comfortable with him.”
Marta, “First, this lady cannot know for sure that nobody can match her husband, and if she is looking to replace him, she will fail. Second, both of the gents she describes are not for her, unless she wants to nurse somebody that she does not know well. Third, she should keep dating but have higher standards - there is no need to be either a ‘nurse or a purse.’ There are lovely men out there who want to be loved and accepted, who are healthy and bright. If she can't find one of those, she shouldn’t settle, and should be happy as she is.”  
Part 2 – Senior dating advice. Attitude is important. One of the attributes that I respect in all of you is the positive attitudes you bring to the table. At times, people subscribe to the newsletter and then they decide they do not fit in with our positive-message mold. Such is the case with a woman who signed up three weeks ago. She emailed this week (this is exactly how the email appeared, I did not edit):
 “lost interest,,,, no longer looking 4 GENTLEMEN,,,, THEY R ALREADY TAKEN,,,, REMOVE ME FROM THIS NEWSLETTER”
I sent her an email encouraging her to hang in with us for a while. She didn’t respond. So, she’s no longer with us. Attitude is important.
Have a great week-end.

Part 3 - The Finding Love After 50 Facebook page. As I posted on the Facebook page Wednesday night, I have decided to shut it down in a week or two. The reason: 475 members belong but only a few are making posts. It has become almost like a few people's own Facebook page. I don't have time to monitor it and don't have time to pre-screen people who want to join, who often turn out to be people unfit for our group (in my judgment). Many of you posted that you want the site to continue. I suggest you create a new site with a new founder and a couple of administrators. I will give you time to do that; I will help you keep the contacts and friends you've made on here. Thanks for understanding.
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