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Simply Solo Spotlight: SeniorPeopleMeet.com – My MOM Posts a Profile for Me

July 5, 2011

Hello all, and happy belated Fourth of July! I hope everyone had a blast this weekend! I had so much fun I almost forgot it was Tuesday, which means, of course, it’s Simply Solo Spotlight time!

Today’s guest post is written by the very funny author of My Dating Prescription. I absolutely love her stories of dating after 40, and I’m excited to welcome her to Simply Solo. I hope you enjoy today’s guest post, and good luck getting back into the swing of things after the long weekend.

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at: simplysoloblog@gmail.com.

SeniorPeopleMeet.com – My MOM Posts a Profile for Me

One of the things I loved about being married was the idea that I would never have to go on another first date. So after my husband announced that he wanted a divorce, it wasn’t surprising that everyone around me seemed more excited about the notion of me dating again than I was. My therapist, my friends, my family, everyone seemed to think it was important for me to get back out there. They were worried that I was disappearing into an isolated, middle-aged life of watching reality TV, drinking cheap red wine alone on weeknights, and cuddling with my dog. My therapist suggested that I date one hundred men just to “boost my self-esteem.” My single friends gently nudged me, recounting stories of their own dates, and suggesting that I post some profiles online “just to see what will happen.”

But, nobody seemed more excited about the idea that I would be dating again than my mother. I couldn’t understand why this was exactly. (She had been so excited when I finally got married.) Like other people in my life though, I think she was worried about the fact that I might be shutting myself off from the world.

When I published my first blog post, announcing to the world that I would be taking my therapist’s direction to date 100 men, my mom seemed thrilled. To say that she was enthusiastic is an understatement. With each blog post, I could count on her to rate my post and comment. The problem was she would often say too much and reveal FAR too many personal details. I would quietly manage her comments, deleting any information that made me uncomfortable. On a couple of occasions, I tried to explain to her that although I was blogging about dating and revealing a lot of personal information, I wanted to be the one in control of what was said.

Moms like to be supportive, so it’s not surprising that my mother’s enthusiasm was not isolated to my blog. She wanted to know where I was posting profiles. I told her I had settled on two online dating sites for the time being, match.com and Plentyoffish.com.

A week later, she asked, “Have you thought about SeniorPeopleMeet?

“Senior what?”

“SeniorPeopleMeet.”

“What is SeniorPeopleMeet?”

“It’s an online dating site.”

“SeniorPeopleMeet,” I said, “What are you saying?”

“Well, nothing. It would be another option.”

“Great. That’s great. You know I get pissed when I get emails from the AARP, don’t you? Why would I want to go on SeniorPeopleMeet?”

“There are 40-year-old men on there,” she exclaimed.

“That’s nice, so that means I should be on there? I think I’m good with the two profiles I’ve got. Thanks.”

I blew it off. I’m not particularly happy with the fact that I’m in my mid-forties and dating again, but I felt I didn’t need to make myself feel older by signing up for a senior citizen dating site. Since women typically outlive men, I figured by the time I was senior dating, I’d become a lesbian, dye my hair blue, and find a partner I’d be happy antiquing with on the weekends. I wasn’t ready to go there just yet.

I had also been struggling with the age range I should pick on my online dating profile, and found myself having a hard time setting the upper limit past fifty. I knew this was limiting my searches, but I was struggling with it just the same. I’m a young 43, and in my experience of dating men in their late 40s, they seem to have a hard time keeping up with me. What would a 50, 60, or 70-year-old do with me? Besides, I didn’t want to deal with the repeated trips to the bathroom due to an aging prostate, a special heart-healthy diet, or, God forbid, if I got to know someone well enough, Viagra.

This isn't exactly what I had in mind... Photo courtesy of Thomas Lieser

I knew dating in my forties was going to be different than it was when I was younger, but I didn’t want it to be THAT different.

A few days later, I got an email from my mother.

“I’ve created a profile for you on SeniorPeopleMeet.com. The username is ___________ and the password is __________.”

“What!?” This was too much, even for me.

The big question, of course, was what was my mother doing browsing the profiles on SeniorPeopleMeet.com? If it’s eye candy she was after, she’d be better off renting the Twilight series than browsing an online dating site. The handsome, fit men there seem to be few and far between.

Part of me wondered if my mother missed her single, dating life. She had spent four and a half years meeting over 100 different men through online dating, logging each one into a little notebook, before she finally met my step-dad. (They have been happily married for 11 years. In fact, today is their anniversary.)

In the end I thanked her, and deleted the email. I figured my mom’s research was just part of her enthusiasm and eagerness to be helpful (aka meddle.) I appreciated the effort, but I like to do this kind of thing on my own. Thank you very much.

Call it boredom. Call it morbid curiosity. Whatever. Eventually, as you may have guessed, I found my way to SeniorPeopleMeet.com. I figured I couldn’t write it off as a stupid idea without going to take a look.

Here’s what I finally concluded.

  • The average age of the men who had viewed my profile was 51.96 years old with a standard deviation of 5.624 years. Trust me. I looked at the data on this. For any statisticians out there, the median age was 51.5 years old, and the inter-quartile range was 8 years.
  • They may be older, but they are no wiser. I read several profiles, and I’m sorry to report ladies that literacy is still lacking even in the older age brackets. Call it laziness or call it an inability to craft a proper sentence; online profiles do not get better with age.
  • I’m only guessing, but even on SeniorPeopleMeet.com, people still lie about their age. There were several profiles where I didn’t believe the age could possibly be correct. Let’s just say, if that’s what 53 looks like, I better brace myself for a long, lonely retirement.
  • Finally, at 43, I’m on the younger end of the age spectrum on SeniorPeopleMeet.com. Therefore, my profile seemed to quickly attract a lot of attention. I was only online for a few minutes before I had a couple of emails and a request to chat. (I could not respond to them, however, because I’m too cheap to pay the fee to be a member.) It definitely seemed like I might get more action on SeniorPeopleMeet.com than I have on match.com. In five months on match.com, I’ve only had 6 dates. I’m just not sure I would want to email or chat with any of the men I saw posted on SeniorPeopleMeet.

Long story short, I think I’ll stick with match.com and Plentyoffish.com for now. Blue hair dye and antiquing may be coming sooner than I had planned. As for mom, the truth is she’s my biggest fan. She can’t figure out why some great guy hasn’t snatched me up already. I’m grateful for her support (and her enthusiasm) and I want to wish her and my step-dad a Very Happy Anniversary!

They are proof that you can find love at any age.


16 Comments leave one →
  1. July 5, 2011 10:31 am

    My Dating Prescription,
    Thanks so much for this guest post! I just love your stories – you have such a unique perspective on the dating world after all you’ve been through. I think you should be commended for even checking out the site – if I saw the word SENIOR I would be out!! haha 🙂 Your mom is funny for giving you this push. Maybe you should start attending nursing home mixers? hehe jk. Thanks again!

    • July 5, 2011 10:47 am

      Thanks for giving me the opportunity to share this story, Catherine. Since my mom said there were men my age on the site, I figured I had to go see what there was to choose from. I’m not ready for nursing home mixers, but I think some of the Meetup groups I’ve been attending are starting to take on a bit of a senior vibe. I think I need to get some new (younger) hobbies.

  2. Joan Beem permalink
    July 5, 2011 3:59 pm

    I LOVE your MOM!!! I’m a Mom too and recently divorced after 43 years of marriage with a wonderful man who so greatly enriched my life for over 48 years. He decided to move on to a 41 year old. You may want to think about it. He’s a great catch. Steady, good income. House. Boat. Great sense of humor. AND…seems to really like and enjoy the company of 40-somethings and their kids.

    Catherine, thanks for keeping this going!! Love you!! 🙂

    • July 5, 2011 7:36 pm

      Thanks, Joan. I’m tempted to try it just for a month just because, like I said, I received a lot more emails and “flirts” than on match.com. All of the 40-year-old guys on match are probably looking for 20-year-olds.

  3. July 5, 2011 8:03 pm

    Great story! But how could anyone (particularly a therapist) think that going on 100 first dates would boost someone’s self esteem? I’ve had to STOP internet dating for a while in the interest of preserving my self esteem (and sanity).

    • July 5, 2011 8:24 pm

      I know. I thought my therapist was crazy. Quite honestly, because he didn’t want me to get serious with anyone, a lot of it is about limiting expectations and just getting back out there. I can honestly say after going on 19 dates now, I have had some very interesting revelations and it actually HAS been good for me. It has made me realize that I have a lot more power than I ever would have thought, if that makes sense. Explaining that is probably worth an entire blog post, or an entire blog, in itself. It’s more about the process than the individual dates.

  4. ElderBaud permalink
    July 6, 2011 2:23 am

    I actually have a friend back east who is happily married to a woman he met through a profile posted by his parents. Of course, she totally runs his life, which totally suits him…

    • July 6, 2011 11:03 am

      That probably works for some, but I like to be in control of my dating. Besides, if it were up to my mom, I would be married to a bow-legged cowboy in tight Wranglers and a cowboy hat. She’s got my “type” all wrong.

  5. Mom permalink
    July 6, 2011 12:24 pm

    Enjoyed your guest blog over here. You are such a good writer. No, dear, I picture you with an intelligent man who shares the wealth of his intellect and fortune no matter what his occupation. It is I who always enjoyed looking at the tall, slim, wrangler rancher type. As you know that didn’t work out well for me. Since I married a short man who is not a rancher type, one day we were in a restaurant.. a 6ft about 5 in slim Wrangler dressed guy stood up and I told my hubby, “that’s what I used to look for!” His answer, “& how’s that working out for ya?” We had a good laugh. In dating over 150 guys, I discovered who I was, what I was REALLY looking for and what was RIGHT for me. Who ever you chose, if he makes you happy, we will be happy for you. That’s our wish for you! Keep writing~~~enjoying every post & have NO desire to be in your shoes! Cheering for you… hugs, Mom

  6. Meade permalink
    July 6, 2011 5:18 pm

    Silly question, but why would a young woman in her 40s be on SeniorPeoplemeet.com? Are men under 70 not mature enough?

    • July 7, 2011 4:14 pm

      Well, that’s my point exactly. I’ve been thinking about this even more, and I suppose there are some people, male and female, who may be on there to try to take advantage of a possible gold-digging situation. That’s just not me. Like I said, I’m not ready to go there yet. Not even close.

  7. Zak permalink
    July 7, 2011 10:43 am

    Just think about it: at 43, you’re the equivalent of the 18 year olds on PlentyofFish.com. Basically, expect guys 10+ years to twice your age to hit on you.

    And it’s sad that guys still can’t write worth a crap. You’d think that a few years being single and failing would lead one to conclude that writing a decent profile matters. Oh well, better chances for me, then, I suppose.

    • July 7, 2011 4:19 pm

      Yes, better chances for you. You would think that by 60 men would at least learn to ask someone for help writing their profile. That would require asking for directions though.

  8. July 19, 2011 12:07 pm

    Ugh! 100 dates seems like so many…although I don’t really like dating…I am always a fan of trying something new. Can’t wait to read more of your blog!

    -L

    • July 26, 2011 2:38 am

      Thank you. It is a bit of a marathon, especially when so many of them are duds, but it has definitely given me a different perspective so far.

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