Online dating best left to the young

ann:gregRarely do I wish to return to my youth. Only when it takes forever for an injury to heal, or when my head tells me I have the flexibility, strength and stamina of earlier days and my body proves my head wrong. (Or when I see a photo like this one where my husband and I look so young.)

There are many aspects of my younger life I never want to relive. These include high school, college, job-hunting, eating hot dogs and twenty-cents-a-box macaroni and cheese every day, and dating. As far as the latter, I wouldn’t even know how to do it now.

For many people the search for a serious relationship has become as time-consuming as job-hunting, and probably more emotionally draining.  And for millennials — those born between 1980 and 1995 — “on-line dating is the norm.”*

Until I read an article on the topic in last Sunday’s “Seattle Times,” I’d never heard of dating apps and sites OKCupid, Tinder, Hinge, Siren, Coffee Meets Bagel, Double, and Plenty of Fish.*  Today, these are common ways to make that first connection. And those first connections require research, decisions about whom to contact, then the anxiety involved in waiting for a response. After that, is a second meeting in the cards? In some ways, it’s the same process as young people have used for decades, but for an old-timer like me it sounds much more punishing.

“Between 2005 and 2012, more than 34 percent of married couples met on-line, outstripping work and friend introductions…”* So the system must work, but the research phase seems more like hard work and the effort more stressful.

My husband and I met in a philosophy class at the University of Washington, when we were both 19.  Our degrees did not lead to jobs, but we always say that meeting each other was one good thing to come from our choice of major.

We married at 25, which then was considered late in life but now isn’t.

We’re still happily married, forty-plus years later.

Looking back, it seemed so easy. It was easy.

I’m glad that younger generations seem to be up for the modern dating game and that for many of us older folks, the game ended long ago.

*”Working for Love: Online dating is starting to feel like a second job”

About stillalife

I retired June 30, 2010 after working for 40 years in the field of education and most recently doing school public relations/community outreach in a mid-size urban school district. I wrote for superintendents and school board members. Now I'm writing for me and I hope for you. In this blog, I offer my own views coupled with the latest research on how to preserve our physical and mental health as we age, delve into issues most of us over 50 can relate to like noticing wrinkles and forgetting where we left our keys, discuss the pros and cons of different ways to engage our minds and bodies after we leave the workplace, and throw in an occasional book review, all peppered with a touch of humor, irony, and just plain silliness. Also, I'm on the third draft of my second novel since retirement.
This entry was posted in aging, personal reflections and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Online dating best left to the young

  1. dkzody says:

    I could never imagine doing these online sites to find a “mate.” Blah. Of course, I’m no longer a young college girl, though. Maybe if I was, I would be more adventuresome. I went on some questionable dates back in the day. I have been fortunate.

    Terry and I met through a computer, though. His name was spit out for a class I was taking in college. It was part of a marketing research project, and he was one of my interview subjects. We just kept talking and then he wanted my number. It’s all history. Oh, and I was very young when we married–22.

  2. Barbara de Michele says:

    My son and daughter-in-law met online (in an ancient technology — a chat room). For my son, who is very shy, it was a godsend. They were able to chat every night, get to know each other, without the awkward (for my son) need to go to parties or other social events. They’ve been married for fifteen years and — knock on wood — it has so far worked out well, as they seem to complement each other in extraordinary ways. I was very skeptical when I first heard the news. I learned later that my daughter-in-law’s parents were equally alarmed. I cannot imagine meeting someone online but perhaps that’s a generational thing. Or maybe I’ve just read too many true crime stories.

  3. Martha says:

    Didn’t know you met in philosophy class – which one?
    Great photo. Neither of you has changed much so I suppose it was taken last summer.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s