Where Can I Find A New Partner?

Posted on: 17 April 2008 by Gareth Hargreaves

Jane's husband left her and now she wants to build a new loving relationship, but where can she meet someone special?

Jane Writes:

I am 64 years old and was married happily for 43 years before my husband left me for a younger woman.

I have been very lucky with the support I have received from my friends and family but, nearly three years down the line, I still find it very hard not to be in a loving relationship.  I want to meet other people and would like to build another relationship.  However, at my age I do not think it will be easy, not least because men do not fancy older women.

Is it too soon for me to be worrying about this, or, do  you think at my age I should join an internet dating site or will I just be wasting my money?  I am well preserved and do not look my age, but I do think that the stress I have had to cope with over the last three years has left its mark and badly affected my confidence and self-esteem.  I feel very much in limbo and would welcome your advice.

Andy Advises:

I can understand that you thought you were in a happy relationship after 43 years with one person, but clearly he did not feel the same way or you wouldn’t be in the situation you are in now, would you? 

However, you can be sure that there is no age limit for love.  I know of a couple who married last month when she was 80 and he was 82.

It’s a fallacy that men who find themselves alone in middle age want to meet only younger women who they can then parade on their arms as status symbols.  Of course it happens.  But all the men I’ve ever spoken to about this say that although they may find themselves attracted to the idea of a ‘dolly bird’ after finding themselves alone later in life, they soon find they have little in common with much younger women.

Most people seeking friendship and possibly love need compatibility in later life.  When you have no shared history with someone, you need a foundation this generally comes from shared life experiences of people who are of similar ages.

You have a great attitude, especially bearing in mind all you have suffered.  And you have already learnt the most important lesson of singledom.  You have to be proactive.  If you want to start dating again, the dating ‘Wish Fairy’ needs a little help.

Internet dating can be very successful. It opens up great opportunities to meet people you might never ordinarily have bumped into at your local pub or social club. However, you must also be aware of the pitfalls.  Anyone can be whoever they choose on line so you do need to be careful.  I wrote a book called How to Find Love Mid-Life, published by Hodder and Stoughton and which is still available on Amazon and I devoted a whole chapter to internet dating.

There are a whole range of other things I could suggest, too.  Join a local social club, or an adult education class on something you’ve always longed to learn more about in the past but never had the I inclination or opportunity.  There is much out there for us in our 50s and 60s, including lessons on everything from ballroom dancing and bridge to languages, art history and antiques.

The University of the Third Age is all about stimulating and informative learning for older people.  They run sessions at centres all over the country.  Whether you wish to learn, or even perhaps teach if you have a speciality, U3A offers wonderful opportunities to make new friends in your age group.  For details in your area, contact www.u3a.org.uk.

There is also a social network called Nexus that offers friendship for singles of all ages country wide.  You can contact them on www.nexus-uk.co.uk or ring them on 01237 47170 and they will offer you details of your nearest branch.  Making new friends with people, regardless of sex, is the key to a whole new life and possibly new love.

I would, however, urge you, please don’t rush.  Don’t jump into a relationship with someone unknown just because you are lonely and because you miss the comfort of a permanent relationship.  It might be so easy to make a terrible mistake, especially when your trust and your confidence have taken such a terrible knock.

Good luck and please let me know how you get on.

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