Friday, March 13, 2015
Older Adult Romance: Internet, Speed Dating (Research, Video 4:34)
If you’re an older woman seeking a male dating partner, the choices get slimmer with time. Perhaps you have considered lowering the bar in terms of your preferences. Perhaps not, especially if you’ve grown to love the freedom and carefree lifestyle of single living without a partner. Older men, on the other hand, look around and see more possibilities available among potential women to date as they age. Options like Internet dating and speed dating add new flavors to old traditions. Seems like choosing romantic partners is much different from the days when they were all younger. But are older adults similar to young people today in their dating choices?
Research on Internet dating profiles for 100 older adults and 100 younger adults indicate that older adults (and especially older women) were more selective than younger adults when it came to the age, race, religion, income, and height of a prospective dating partner. Perhaps these older adults are more selective because of lessons they learned through the years. Being a little picky can be a good thing when one doesn’t feel desperate.
But older adults can’t be viewed as a homogeneous group. They include such a wide range of ages and types that their quest for romantic love has to be categorized in three divisions: the young-old, the middle-aged old, and the old-old. In terms of courtship, the young-old and middle-aged old are more likely to mention adventure, romance, sexual interests, and seeking a soul mate and less likely to mention health in their preferences.
Some older adults concerned about the passage of time are using speed dating when they want to quicken the dating process. After losing her husband of 47 years over a year ago, Roz tries speed dating in her quest for friendship or romance. View this video to see her results:
Frances Shani Parker, Author
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