As Unmarried and Single Americans Week (September 20-26th) is upon us, it is important to remember that a significant number of singles today are seniors.
According to U.S. Census Bureau News (July, 2009), there are 15.8 million single Americans who are 65 or older. These older Americans account for 16 percent of all unmarried and single people age 18 and older. Many of these seniors have found themselves single again after a divorce or the death of a significant other. Although many single seniors don’t wish to remain single, it can be hard to get back on the horse again after so many years out of the dating scene.
According to relationship expert Paul A. Falzone, CEO of The Right One and Together Dating, “Dating isn’t just for the young. It’s for the young at heart. Age doesn’t matter.”
As the CEO of one of the world’s largest brick-and-mortar dating services, Falzone has paired thousands of clients during more than 35 years in business. A large number of these singles were people over the age of 55 looking for friendship and love.
“When you’re a single senior, you’re looking for many of the same things that singles of any age are looking for – someone to spend time with who shares your interests and who has those qualities that you find attractive,” explained Falzone.
Take Advantage of Technology
Falzone encourages single seniors to learn more about and take advantage of technology. A traditional brick and mortar dating service that uses high-tech matchmaking software to match members in conjunction with matchmaker consultation services is ideal for single seniors. This type of “high touch” matchmaking service, such as The Right One or Together Dating’s, will help you get back out into the dating scene. Even if you don’t think you’re ready to look for love just yet and are more interested in making new friends, this type of dating service can be instrumental in introducing you to others who share your interests and who are also looking for friendship.
Many seniors are already knowledgeable about social networking sites such as Facebook and use it to correspond with their children and grandchildren. For those who aren’t familiar with it, Facebook is a great way to communicate with family members but you can also use it to get back in touch with folks you probably haven’t seen in a while such as former colleagues or high school and college classmates.
Have a hobby? Then there’s probably a “Meetup Group” for it. From quilting, photography and sports to dining out and more, you may find others with similar interests online at Meetup.com.
New Dating Etiquette
For single seniors who haven’t dated in a long time, perhaps even decades, Falzone advises of the new dating etiquette:
· Meet in a public place by your own transportation. Play it safe until you get to know the person.
· Men and women now split the bill. Don’t commit the faux pas of expecting one person to pay for everything. Both parties should offer to pay their share and be prepared to do so. Be sure to have cash on hand in case plastic isn’t on the menu.
· Don’t air your “dirty laundry”. Problems with your ex or your adult children? Conflicts with families or former partners are a natural part of life, yet there’s no need to share the burden early on.
· Dating is about BOTH people. Dating is and always will be two-way, with plenty of listening and communication. You should work around both of your schedules and interests when arranging a date and deciding where to go. One person doesn’t get to call all the shots.
· Guard your personal information and your assets. Know that there are many people who are quick to take advantage of the loneliness of seniors. Be aware that not everyone you meet may be a person of substance, ethically and morally.
· Be safe. Tell a friend or someone else close to you, where and with whom you are going on your date. If you can’t reach anyone, call your own voicemail and leave a detailed message and any contact info you have about your date.
Falzone continued, “Something that hasn’t changed is courtesy. Courtesy transcends the generations. Confirm your date, be on time and conclude it comfortably. If you want to see each other again, great, but if not, that’s okay too. Go on your date with no expectations, and be sure to end it on a polite note. Most importantly – be yourself and be honest and sincere.”
Help is on the way
Catering to more than 300,000 members at more than 60 locations throughout North America, The Right One and Together Dating are the largest brick and mortar dating services in the industry, offering a more consistent product, a greater number of potentially compatible mates and added value of flexibility in transferring memberships to another geographic region.
North American locations and affiliates of Together are located in: Indiana (Ft. Wayne, Carmel); Kentucky (Louisville); Louisiana (Metairie); Maryland (Columbia, Frederick); Minnesota (Edina); Nevada (Reno); New Hampshire (Hooksett, Nashua, Portsmouth and Salem); Ohio (Cincinnati); South Carolina (Greenville); Texas (San Antonio and Austin) and Virginia (Falls Church); Pennsylvania (Harrisburg).
The Right One’s offices and affiliates located throughout the United States include: California (San Diego); Colorado (Glendale); Georgia (Atlanta); Illinois (Downers Grove, Rockford, Normal, Schaumburg and Chicago); Massachusetts (Norwell, Newton Center, Shrewsbury and Woburn); Michigan (Bingham Farms); Nebraska (Omaha and Lincoln); New Jersey (Cherry Hill); New York (NYC); Nevada (Las Vegas); Pennsylvania (Harrisburg, King of Prussia); Rhode Island (Warwick); Texas (Dallas); Utah (Salt Lake City); and Wisconsin (Madison, Appleton, Elm Grove).
Singles Station Dating Company, an affiliate of The Right One and Together Dating, is the largest independently owned personal introduction service in the Southwest. In the last 25 years, Singles Station has introduced more than 100,000 couples and is responsible for thousands of successful relationships and marriages. Singles Station Dating Co. has offices in Oklahoma (Oklahoma City and Tulsa), Arkansas (Bentonville, Fort Smith and Little Rock), Tennessee (Memphis and Nashville), Missouri (Springfield and St. Louis) and will be opening soon in Kansas (Wichita and Kansas City). For more information about Singles Station, please visit www.singlesstation.com or call 866-807-LOVE(5683).
For more information about Together Dating and The Right One, please visit their websites at www.togetherdating.com and www.therightone.com, or call (800) 818-DATE (3283).