Am I Too Picky Senior Dating Advice

Senior Dating

Am I Too Picky? (Senior Dating Advice)

April Braswell

Written by: April Braswell

April Braswell

April Braswell is a senior dating expert, dating coach and professional dating profile writer. She leads dating, relationship and communication skills workshops throughout California.

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Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement. She has worked at The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The Gwinnett Daily News, and The Gainesville Sun covering lifestyle topics.

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If you find yourself single after 50 and you don’t want to be, you may be asking yourself, “Am I too picky?”

Sure, the senior dating timeline can take longer than it did when you were in your 20s and 30s. However, if it’s been more than 12 months of concerted focus on getting yourself out there and going on dates, and you’re still single, it’s time to reflect and make some changes.

If that’s you, you’re in the right place. Read on!

1. You Have Too Many Non-Negotiables

Being too selective and having rigid must-haves and non-negotiables is a form of self-sabotage. No one can possibly fit all that criteria. We self-sabotage to protect ourselves from getting hurt.

To find love, rather than making a negatives list for your midlife mate, reframe and make a list of positives. When we frame negatively, we literally train the brain to look for that. Have you ever heard of the phrase “Whatever you focus on, you get more of?” That’s it exactly what I’m talking about.

Avoid making a list of negatives. Instead, focus on what you are looking for in a partner. When you do, you train yourself to be on the lookout for great senior dates.

2. You Care Too Much About Looks

If you say to yourself, “My next partner must be very handsome or beautiful,” you may be too picky in senior dating.

Of course, you want to be attracted to the person. However, if you want love and a fulfilling relationship past 50 or 60, you must also look for a beautiful heart.

Yes, it’s important for all of us to take care of ourselves, but remember that looks aren’t as important as having a good heart.

Practice being forbearing, and stop looking for the next Brad Pitt or Catherine Zeta Jones.

3. You Only Want to Date Younger People

I know it’s alluring to go for younger men and women, but you also want to give singles in your age group a chance. Dating is a numbers game — the wider your scope and the more dates you accept, the more likely you are to find a true match.

4. You’ve Stopped Taking Care of Yourself

Yes, earlier in this article I talked about not focusing on appearance when looking for a senior mate. However, you still want to take care of yourself.

You still need to eat well, exercise, wear nice clothes, brush your hair, and properly groom yourself. Those small gestures will not only make you more attractive to your dates, but it will also boost your confidence.

5. You’ve Given Up on Intimacy

All too often, the world inundates us with messages that singles in their 50s and 60s should simply give up on sex and intimacy.

How many romantic movies were released in the past decade? And how many of those movies featured a couple over 50? Not many, right?

What’s even worse — and this is one of the real reasons too many senior singles have given up — is that you’re lambasted and ridiculed by the media and social media for thinking about sex and intimacy after 50.

Photo of mature couple in bed

Sometimes seniors feel like they have to give up on sex and intimacy because it can be made fun of in movies and by the media.

For example, in the movie “A Madea Christmas,” Tyler Perry’s character ridicules a middle-aged woman for shopping for sexy lingerie. The character says, “Lingerie is for young people with tight firm bodies.”

Well, ladies and gentlemen, that’s simply not true! There are plenty of singles in midlife who want to have an active sex life, and that’s nothing to make fun of. Go ahead and buy that lacy slip or a fun toy to try out.

Believe in your own sexiness. The engine may need some support to get revved up, but it can be done.

6. You Believe Senior Dating Myths

I’ve heard many of my clients fall for common senior dating myths. They’ll say things like, “I can’t date a divorced dad. He won’t have time for me.” or “I won’t date a widower because he won’t be able to get over that loss.”

These kinds of myths are not accurate at all. If you really want to find love, you want to be open-minded, not judgmental. Get to know someone first before writing them off.

I usually recommend senior singles go on at least five dates with someone new before deciding if it’s going to go anywhere. Approach those early dates as a chance to get acquainted and discover what’s unique, interesting, and wonderful about your date.

7. You Want Every First Date to Immediately Turn Into a Relationship

On first dates, instead of sitting there wondering if he or she is “The One,” simply focus on learning as much as you can about them. Let go of your agenda.

Is she being kind to you? Does he treat the waitstaff well? Did she leave a good tip? Did he open the door for the elderly woman behind him? What book has she read recently? Which top three places does he enjoy visiting? Does she get along with her family? What does he enjoy doing with his friends? Do you two have similar hobbies? What about beliefs and values?

Photo of a mature couple

Even if your date ends up being a friend, that’s still a win.

Not every date needs to turn into a relationship for it to be a successful encounter. This lovely person may turn out to be a fantastic addition to your social circle. After 50, we’re all looking for new friends.

Plus, if your date turns out to be a better friend, in the future, he or she can help set you up with people they know whom you haven’t met yet.

It’s Time to Tear Down Your Picky Walls

If you see yourself doing any of these things, you need to let go of your pickiness. Open your mind, give people a chance, and put yourself out there.

If you open yourself up to different types of people, potential dates will do the same for you. You’ll appreciate their gesture of not assuming you’re not for them. Good luck — I know you can do this!

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