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– in the 21st century.

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Thanks to the Internet and personal ads, senior dating is growing in popularity at an astounding rate, especially since the Baby Boomers are reaching senior status. However, it can be awkward to those who have been out of circulation for a long time due to marriage or are unfamiliar with how to use a computer. As a widower myself, I found myself at odds with today’s dating scene. I had to learn the protocols of dating all over again. In a way, it reminds me of the first time you asked a young lady out at age 16, you’re simply not sure of yourself and the date becomes a bit awkward. The same is true in senior dating.

Before we get into the nitty gritty, let’s take a moment to consider what we want from a dating partner. In my case, I had been married for nearly 40 years and, as such, have no real interest in getting married again. After all, I understand the purpose and responsibilities of marriage and I cannot see it applying to me any longer. Plus, there is the problem of divvying up finances late in life which can kill any relationship, as well as alienating your heirs. So, I do not see another marriage in my future.

One of the first things you have to ask yourself in dating is what kind of person are you looking for? A friend or companion, marriage, someone to help take care of you, or simply a sexual partner? Personally, I have found those relationships based solely on sex are without sand and doomed to failure. However, some people just want this simple primal need satisfied.

When we select friends, we are looking for people to play with and confide in; in business, we look for people we can respect and trust, be it another employee, a customer or vendor; when selecting a spouse, we’re looking to the future and hoping to build a family. As for me, at this stage of my life, I am looking for a person who is candid and honest in conversation, and has a great sense of humor (very important). I also want intellectual, emotional, and physical compatibilities. Morality and common interests and experiences are also important. Age is not very important, but I limit it to people who are four years younger or older than me, thereby we can relate in terms of history and entertainment.

In my searches on-line I typically find divorcees and widows. The divorcees seem to be very active, wanting to climb mountains, go kayaking or canoeing, skydiving, running a triathlon, raising a herd of animals, go hiking or backpacking, and travel to Timbuktu. The widows tend to be more sedate and confident, and preferring walks on the beach and a glass of wine now and then. I have found them typically more fun to talk to as they have already climbed the mountains, but now just want to enjoy life like I do.

The point is, it is very important to know what you desire before you embark on your search as you will save time and will more likely find the right person. Please be honest with yourself.

There is a plethora of resources to help locate a person. If you are afraid of technology, let me suggest you stick with the “personal” section of newspapers. Here you will find people with a variety of interests and ages. When responding to someone, do not come on too strong as you may frighten the person away. Suggest a “meetup” at a neutral public place, such as a restaurant, tavern, or coffee house.

If you are more adept at technology, let me suggest one or more of the dating sights on the Internet. Here is but a handful (there are actually many more):


Match Seniors

Our Time

Silver Singles

Singles Over 45


Match Seniors

Many of these sites work the same way, but there are some nuances that make them unique. Some are free to use but most include a subscription fee.

Perhaps the most popular dating site is Like others, they prompt you to formulate a profile. For, they want you to define the following attributes about yourself:

– Age (DOB) – Height – Condition (e.g., athletic, curvy, a few pounds over, etc.) – Marital status – single, divorced, widowed, separated. – Location – used to match people and alert you when someone has physically been near to you through GPS technology – Range in miles – used for search purposes; For example, by establishing a range you cam limit your search to people within a 50 mile radius of you if so desired as opposed to the whole United States. This dramatically cuts down on the number of people you meet, which is a good thing. – Education – Religion – Political persuasion – e.g., conservative, liberal, moderate. – Hometown – Line of work – How often you exercise

– Vaccination (Covid-19)

These attributes are used by people to search for a suitable partner. Please note: You enter only what you want, but the more precise you are, the better the chances of finding someone compatible.

You can also add photos and text describing yourself. The photos should be recent and not what you looked like in your twenties. The text is used to sell yourself and typically describes what your interests are and what you want in terms of a relationship. This section is perhaps the most important. Think of it as your “sales pitch.”

My female friends on Match tell me about outrageous photos they have seen of men, whereby they are bare-chested, reclining on a bed, with only one thought on their mind. In my experience, the ladies tend to dress more appropriately, but every now and then you come across a suggestive photo.

The ratio of women to men on these services is at least 2:1, probably higher though. This gives men a distinct advantage in terms of locating a person.

To make contact with someone, you can simply “like” them, and see if they “like” you back, or develop a text dialog with them. They may or may not answer. Not answering generally means they are either not interested or haven’t checked in quite some time.

When you use these services, you have to use a lot of common sense. Yes, there are deadbeats out there trying to mislead or cheat you. I even heard a story of a woman who loaned thousands of dollars to a man, never to see him or the money again. So, the biggest challenge in using these on-line services is to find a trustworthy person who shares your interests and morality.

I don’t want to paint a totally bleak picture, after all there are many good people on-line. I’m just warning you to look before you leap.

Normally, after making contact through the service, it is suggested you talk to the other person by telephone. If there is a connection, ask for a “meetup” at a neutral public place, such as a restaurant, tavern, or coffee house. If the meeting goes well, propose to meet again on a date; if not, just let it go and walk away.

Something I hear from my female friends is that men will sometimes stop a dialog cold without an apparent reason. This typically angers women. If you wish to stop the dialog, just send a message that you do not believe you are a good match for the other person, and wish them well in their continued search.

Like I said, these services are open to anybody, irresponsible people as well as courteous people. Some women have suggested to me there should be some form of psychological test in the service to evaluate a person’s morality, as well as their emotional and financial stability, particularly for men. Such a feature would probably make the service more rewarding.

One lady friend of mine came across a profile which included the initials “FWB” in the person’s description. She was at a loss as to what this meant and researched its meaning. It turned out “FWB” stood for “Friends With Benefits” meaning the person is open for sexual activity. This turned her off immediately. Most of the women I have met through want to be treated like ladies, with respect and not taken for granted.

If you are concerned about the other person, investigate their background. You can do a full background check, for a fee, but perhaps a check with your County Clerk of the Courts will reveal what you need to know. They have search engines listing any infractions the person has been involved in, from minor indiscretions to major criminal action. Obviously, you will want to avoid a person with a shady past.

I am often asked, what my final advice is for people interested in using these dating services. I simply say, “DO IT!” Fortunately or unfortunately we now live in the 21st century and computers have become the de facto means to find people with common interests to our own. You can hope to find a nice person at church, a nonprofit, at a party, in business, or introduced by a friend or relative, but using these computer dating services to locate someone while maintaining your anonymity is invaluable.

So, what have you got to lose? Quite simply, loneliness. The first step is entirely up to you. Good luck.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at [email protected]

For Tim’s columns, see:

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Copyright © 2022 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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