Sunday, October 20, 2013

Thursday Salon: On Middle-Age Dating

 Thursdays at my house often mean writing friends coming to visit. These wonderful occasions feature endless coffee and lots of writing. We sometimes do 45/15's, a favorite old standby of mine in which you work flat-out for 45 minutes and then get 15 minutes to chat.

Laughter, as you might imagine, ensues. :)

A recent Thursday Salon

This week I was sharing my recent experiences with online dating. I was curious about this phenomenon I've observed where mature men often want to date strictly younger women - curious enough to ask one of them. 

I read the correspondence to my friends. This gent admits to being 64 and is willing to date ladies 29-50. (I'm fifty, so he generously contacted me even though I'm reaching the upper limit of his sell-by standards.)

ME: i am curious about something that perhaps you can explain to me.  what is it with men who won't date a woman their own age? i get that they are fit, handsome, energetic, etc...but why don't they believe it possible that women could be too? 

HIM: I don't seem to be much like most guys that I run into that are my age. Regarding the women, I've been excoriated about this, with more or less vitriol, several times, so I did an experiment. I raised my age limit. The women that began contacting me were typically very old looking, about 40 lbs overweight, who thought stamping (or something of that ilk) was an art form. When I have actually chosen to meet some of them, they're not very good conversationalists, aren't very curious, sort of don't have much life energy. Also, frankly, they're kind of asexual. This has borne itself out several times. My last two relationships were with a 43 yo and a 49 yo. Most people I meet, if the topic comes up, think I'm 47-55. This happens pretty consistently. 

I invite you to imagine what my smart, funny women friends made of this conversation. After laughing our asses off, the general consensus was that the "asexual" vibe he was picking up was "how long do i have to sit here before making an excuse to leave so i can go re-watch the entire first season of Orange is the New Black."

Because, suprisingly, no lady likes an arrogant douchebag with an inflated self-concept! 

Oh, and...funny, stamping may not impress this guy, but the Detroit Institute of Art thinks it's okay:
courtesy of Dear Mr. Scrapbook
...which perhaps confirms yet again that it's not a good thing to put middle-aged white guys in charge of determining what constitutes art.


Anonymous said...

That is hilarious. When I tried online dating 5.5 years ago, the most discouraging thing was the horrendous spelling and grammar!
Ironically, only a couple weeks after signing up, I met a man there who was actually looking for an OLDER woman--and have been with him ever since!

Sophie Littlefield said...

congrats shoshana on finding the right guy :) i do get a fair number of very young men contacting, as young as 23. I have no idea why, and I have to say i find it sort of unnerving. Not my thing!

This Blonde's Life said...

I am 56 and have been widowed 2 years. I have just started looking on line but haven't set up a profile. My friends are I have reached the same conclusion, most men over 50 wants women under 50! Have you seen some of these men? The poor things look like they don't own a mirror or have friends who love them enough to tell them not to post "that" picture! I am active and engaged and would expect anyone I date to be the same, no matter what age.

Sophie Littlefield said...

Honey, I know exactly what you mean. I've thought about this a lot and concluded that i bring so much to the table - not just personally but I have just about the best community in the world. A man would have to step so, SO far up to be worth my time. Yours too!

That said, I have met some wonderful, bright, funny, kind people. I'm by no means giving up, just content to let fate lead the way for a while!

Sophie Littlefield said...

oh, and i ever hear you about the grammar. My darling friend Nicole Peeler suggested that in my "what I'm looking for" section I write "someone who can wield a comma" - - and it's true. I've tried, but I just can't feel a spark for someone who can't use language competently.

Daisy said...

Actually, I think the "don't have a mirror" comment hits the nail on the head. There really does seem to be a phenomenon among Men of a Certain Age where their self-image is locked at a place about twenty years in the past, and those guys just can't deal with looking across the table at a woman who accurately reflects the age they are now. So they decide that women must age differently than they do, and the only solution is to only date people their "real" age. And then they come up with elaborate and insulting justifications to shield their delusion.

(Not all men are like this, of course. But the ones who are--let's just say they're a little more likely to be single.)

(Also: It is taking great willpower for me to not hijack this thread with my own stories of hilarious online dating profiles.)

Sophie Littlefield said...

very sage.

aw, come on daisy - i want to hear your stories!

Daisy said...

Well, if you insist. :)

1. If you are going to claim the most recent book you have read is the extremely-popular-at-the time "The Da Vinci Code," you should probably figure out how the title is spelled. (I got this one a lot.)

2. On the other hand, if the actual last book you read is about body-image issues of black women, maybe you should just go ahead and put "The Devanchi Code" there instead.

3. No matter how good of a shot it is, that picture of you in front of Hooters is not a good choice for your profile.

4. The "who is your hero" prompt is always difficult to answer without sounding trite, but be aware that if you choose the Silver Surfer--a gleaming, naked, well-muscled, and nearly wordless man--women viewing your profile are going to have some questions. (Also, I'm sorry, but he's a really lame hero. Have you never heard of Wolverine?)

5. Not a profile issue, but while we're on the subject of comic books; if you're going to go on about what a huge fan of Thor you are, you might want to at least be aware of the existence of the Norse mythology.

And, since fair's fair:

6. If you are concerned about the appearance of some not-very-feminine hairs on your upper lip, the time to try out a new chemical depilation product is not half an hour before you are going to meet someone for the first time, due to the very real possibility of a bad reaction leading to what can only be described as a bright pink skin-mustache. Makeup will not help.

Sophie Littlefield said...

Daisy, those are wonderful. Thank you!!

Jane George said...

I read 'stamping as an art form' as 'walking heavily and aggressively.' LOL. Long live formidable women!

And may a wonderful lover walk right into your life. :)