That was the interesting question that one of my readers asked me recently. While society’s values have shifted significantly over the last 50 years, most of my senior daters were raised with the “old fashioned” ideals where the man was the bread winner and the woman stayed at home.
Time changed all of that however and women began seeking meaningful careers outside the home, out of a need for both personal growth and financial necessity.
So lets fast-forward about 40 years or so and look at the online dating scene as a senior nowadays. There are a lot of men whose former housewives are a sharp contrast to some of the independent, computer savvy career women who they will meet on senior dating sites. Can they form meaningful relationships? Well I believe they can as long as both parties keep some vital information in mind.
First of all it is important to remember what you both are looking for. Most senior daters are looking for companionship with a significant other – someone to go out with and have fun and potentially develop a meaningful relationship. So when you meet someone online, if you give yourself enough time to get to know each other, you should be able to see if this person is a good personality match for you and if you have some common interests.
If, however, it is going to end up in a power struggle because you are both stuck in your mindsets of being “the boss” in your life and with others around you, you will have to realize that the relationship will not move forward. In fact, you may find yourself constantly hitting barriers if this is the impression you are giving potential partners. If these values are set in stone for you then be honest and upfront with an online interest and move on. If you do however want to keep an open mind and open your heart to new possibilities, then read on.
Not to sound patronizing, but we must remember a key component of ALL relationships (marriage, friendships, parent-child, work etc) is COMPROMISE. If you are willing to compromise a little you will have a much greater chance of finding a successful relationship with someone you meet online.
What I am talking about specifically here is this. Men – if you are intimidated by the women you meet who have had successful careers (perhaps they have reached the senior executive or ownership level) this is not something you should feel insecure about.
You are at a stage in your life now where meeting someone who is also financially secure is a good thing. And because of her career, she will likely be a great social companion and someone who isn’t afraid of meeting new people and doing new things. No wall-flowers here, unless of course that is what you are looking for.
The fact that your lady friend has accomplished what she has in life is a positive sign of her strength, ability and perseverance. If you discover many other things in common it shouldn’t matter if you didn’t have a similar level of achievement in your career. It isn’t a contest and life is very different now. Your future is not about planning for retirement and saving for education funds and building a four bedroom house in the suburbs. Your future is about ENJOYING your retirement NOW and what better way to do that than with someone who you really like. If you both have the funds it also gives you some pretty nice options for places to travel and things to do together.
Women – you have to remember one thing. The majority of men that you are meeting are from the “old school” of how a man treats a woman. This generation and their view of women is a dying breed and oftentimes their younger counterparts have no clue about opening doors for women and doing the little things that can make a woman feel very special on a date. So enjoy it ladies and embrace it. If your date starts trying to control you however, then this is not gentlemanly behaviour so see this as a sign that you should run for the hills!
The other thing that you want to keep in mind is that when you meet someone online, if you are worried about scaring someone off because of your success, play it down initially. I am not saying that you shouldn’t be proud of who you are and what you have accomplished – not at all. Personal security is an even bigger reason to always be guarded about how much information you give about yourself anyway. You want to get to know someone and have them like you for YOU, not see you as a threat or conversely as a meal ticket because of your success in life. “Baby steps” is the best approach with giving information about yourself so you know it’s a true personality-match taking place.
You must realize that you have both had a great deal of experience in your individual lives that makes you who you are and it is not easy to weave lives together that have been very different. But we all know that nothing worthwhile is easy, and with a little compromise on both your parts you can turn your connection into something really wonderful.