Divorce, death of a spouse and dissatisfaction with being single can propel you into the dating game in your later years. For one thing, it can be easier to date in your later years if you had children and need a babysitter. And at this stage of life, your kids are probably grown and out of the house, or at least old enough to leave alone for a few hours. You probably also know yourself and your needs better, making it easier to decide what you want out of dating and what kind of a partner you desire.
Let people know that you are open to dating by talking about your desires and the kind of partner you want to meet. Most of your friends probably know someone who would like a partner to attend movies, dinner and other enjoyable activities with, even if the relationship goes no deeper than friendship. You can let them know how you would like to be contacted, such as going out with a group of friends to see a play or contacting you through email or phone.
Join groups where older singles congregate, such as a senior activities center, church or bowling league that attracts older adults. Then get active and start meeting people. Attend events and mingle with other attendees. Check out the available partners and strike up a conversation with someone who looks promising. You can decide where it goes from there.
Join a dating site that caters to mature adults, such as SeniorFriendFinder.com, SeniorMatch.com or MatureFreeAndSingle.com. AARP reports that senior adults are the fastest-growing population in the online dating market. Fill out your profile and include information about what you are looking for and what you have to offer. However, avoid including too much personal information in your profile, so a prospective partner cannot track you down without your permission. You can chat online or email back and forth until you decide that you are ready to meet a particular person face to face.
Schedule a first-time meeting with a stranger in a public place, where you know you will be safe. That might be a cafe, restaurant or social event with plenty of other people around. Trade photos before the meeting so you know who you are looking for. Stay in a public area for the meeting so you remain safe. Get to know each other a little better. You can continue to meet in public places until you feel you know this person well enough to spend time alone with them.
Finally, run a background check on a prospective date if you feel the need. You will need the person’s name, birth date, city and state. Also, consider checking this person out on social media sites if you want to save some money or only want superficial information at first. You can do a more in-depth search later if things become more serious and you want to verify the information your date has shared with you.