Dating again after a long hiatus can be a daunting experience. How do you even start? After a marriage or long term relationship has ended, most people don’t know what to do next. Friends and relatives mean well and give lots of advice. Either they have no idea at all what this experience is like (because they’re still in their 25 year marriage) or they will give you advice based only on their own personal experience. When dating later in life you need to find what is best for you. Here are some tips on how to get going after the end of a long relationship or marriage.
One: Take your time…and then take more time. Go at your own pace and begin dating when you feel the timing is right.
Two: You may start to feel like being with someone else, but you don’t want to date. This is a common feeling and certainly one that makes sense. Dating is often a more serious stage. It often means ‘looking for someone special to settle down with’. It is true that many people have this on their requirement list when dating, but some don’t feel they are ready to commit to another relationship yet. I’ll call this Lite Dating. I’m using this term to differentiate from “Hooking Up” or one night stands. Lite Dating is just what it sounds like. A couple can enjoy being together, going to lunch or dinners, to the movies…but not have a feeling of being in love, or wanting to get deeply committed to each other. This may happen over time, but it’s not the initial motivation for either party.
Three: Being with someone of similar motivations is important. It’s necessary to be clear about a desire for Lite Dating and that you’re not looking for a soul mate. Nothing is more difficult than realizing you have misled someone into thinking you were ready for a deep long term commitment, when you were just wanting to enjoy someone’s company.
Four: Try an online site like 50PlusConnects.com. This online dating site does not require that you be looking for your soul mate. Sure, you can do that too but you can also be looking for a travel buddy, a house sharing mate or a companion. You can check off these categories, and be explicit in the profile that you complete. That’s the best way to start out right from the beginning. Be up front and clear about who you are, and the level and type of relationship you’re looking for.
Five: Changing your mind once you start to do Lite Dating is absolutely acceptable. Remember, all of this is up to you. Once you get your feet wet, you may want a more serious relationship. If these feelings begin to grow for the person you had been seeing, it’s best to communicate it directly. He or she may be feeling the same change of heart. Or, perhaps not. If you’re wanting a committed relationship and the person you’ve been with is still only wanting the Lite Dating, it may mean the end to the relationship. Perhaps you can remain friends but you will need to move on and look for someone who wants the commitment. Same would happen if the person you’ve been seeing starts to want a deeper relationship and you do not; you would need to find another to be your Lite Dating partner.
Six: Try signing onto 50PlusConnects.com and complete a full profile. Remember, your profile can be edited any time. Whenever you have some new ideas or change of mind you can sign in and make your edits. The process can be fun rather than daunting.