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  #1  
Old 08-23-2007, 08:50 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Dating at 44: something different, not something more.

I'm pondering dating again.

The things I'd tried before didn't work:
  • Online dating? Never got a second date.
  • Esperanto? I haven't met anyone compatible through Esperanto, though I know others who have.
  • The SDMB? I never hit it off with anyone here on the SDMB, though I've had a fair number of Hopeless Doper Crushes, and I know that others have successfully hooked up.
  • Other venues? I haven't met anyone through the gym,
  • or through the parties my trainer throws,
  • or the other parties I go to,
  • or through the people I know up north,
  • or through my friends in Sutton,
  • or through work.
Clearly the conventional methods do not work for me. Something different is required.

I'm considering experimenting with speed dating.

I read a book called "Blink", which described how we make instant judgements in the first split second of an experience. And indeed, on my last date, I made such a judgement in the first split second of seeing my date, even as my eyes were still adjusting to the darkness of the cafe. And subsequent experience bore that judgement out: there was no spark.

My theory now is, speed dating boils all that down into a regimen of nothing but first judgements. It gets you to the 'yes or no' stage more quickly, and after the 'no', you can move on.

It's worth a try.

However...

When DID I have something close to success? When I was already doing something I wanted to do, that involved a lot of other people. When I was at school, for example, or helping out on the solar-powered houses.

So maybe I just need to keep doing the things I'm interested in, and be as social as I can doing it. I've had my head too close to the drawing board this past year, and maybe this winter I can relax a bit.
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  #2  
Old 08-23-2007, 09:23 PM
Duck Duck Goose Duck Duck Goose is offline
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My BIL has three ex-wives who apparently speed-dated him, because if they'd spent a little more time getting to know him, instead of relying on the nifty way his pheromones interacted with theirs or something, they'd have realized that he was all "sizzle" and no "steak", and they could have moved on to more promising candidates.
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Old 08-23-2007, 10:53 PM
Alice The Goon Alice The Goon is offline
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While I agree that usually you can tell that there's no spark right away, sometimes a spark can grow as you get to know someone. A few years ago I worked at an urgent care center, and we got a new doctor. The first couple of months I knew him, I would've definitely said that he wasn't my type, I'd never go for him, etc. After many 12-hour shifts of mostly sitting around talking and laughing, just me and him, I totally fell in love with him. I never told him, because I knew we did not belong together, but damn I loved that man. It can happen.
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Old 08-24-2007, 08:20 AM
Abraca Deborah Abraca Deborah is offline
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Your assessment is an honest and insightful one.

I have a couple of female friends who have been going the speed dating route and each seem to snag a couple of first dates, but nothing beyond that. I agree, that in the first moments there is perhaps something that one intuitively knows, but it is not always the case.

Your idea of joining in activities that you truly enjoy, that have the benefits of a larger, mixed group sounds like a positive plan. At least you will be doing something you enjoy, there is little or no pressure, and you can see how the person you may be interested in interacts with others.

It seems that the older we grow, the focus on dating is on the bold 'yes' or 'no' to the question of 'are we sould mates?' rather than on the question of 'would it be nice to spend more time with this person?'. Maybe it is part of growing up.

My hope for you is that you meet someone who is as kind, sensitive, and as caring as you are. You are intelligent, you have a quirky sense of humor, and you are talented in the arts and languages. You have interesting viewpoints and would be a fun person to hang out with as you are willing to try new things, like go to restaurants, museums, and take in all that the city has to offer.

And, you don't mind cats!

Keep looking and never, ever settle for less than you deserve.

~Deborah
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  #5  
Old 08-24-2007, 09:10 AM
Zebra Zebra is offline
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It is nice work if you can get it, and if you get it, won't you tell me how.

I'm 42, and I guess I ready to date again. But I'll be damned if I have any idea of what to do.

Maybe I'm not ready.
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  #6  
Old 08-24-2007, 11:13 AM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Thanks, everyone.

Abraca Deborah, I object to cats about as much as I object to chocolate cake.

DDG, that's the thing that concerns me about "speed dating". Blink goes on to say that our instant judgements can sometimes be faulty, especuially if they are operating outside their usual environment...


Quirky sense of humour? I blame that on the insidious influence of working all that time in the general vicinity of Spoons...

Last edited by Sunspace; 08-24-2007 at 11:15 AM..
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  #7  
Old 08-24-2007, 11:16 AM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zebra
I'm 42, and I guess I ready to date again. But I'll be damned if I have any idea of what to do.
We need to found an organisation of People In Their Forties Who Don't Know How To Date...
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  #8  
Old 08-24-2007, 11:33 AM
Zebra Zebra is offline
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Well, I didn't know how to date in my teens and 20's and spent most of my 30's married so it wasn't a required skill.

I did watch an interesting program on attraction on channel 13 but it was produced in the UK. They had a big section on speed dating. The men with the most requests for dates were all the tallest in the group of men. IN fact if you arranged the men from tallest to shortest it was almost exactly the same as the number of requests for dates. So if you are tall, go speed dating.

I'm 6'1" so I guess I should give that a shot.
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  #9  
Old 08-24-2007, 12:01 PM
tdn tdn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace
We need to found an organisation of People In Their Forties Who Don't Know How To Date...
Just tell me where to pay my dues.

Hmm, I'm 6'1" as well.
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  #10  
Old 08-24-2007, 12:20 PM
Slithy Tove Slithy Tove is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace
We need to found an organisation of People In Their Forties Who Don't Know How To Date...
It sure is a lot different than it was in college, when we were all thrown together and everyone knew it was transitory.

I think the biggest obstacle is that people in thier 40's are set in their ways, and this presents an obstacle in several aspects:

We're often at the height of our careers, and even though everyone regardless of age is being worked to death, when you're in your 40's there's a good chance that if you slack off, people under you will suffer. That cuts into our free time.

As bad as the "Oh, they're an item. Oh, now they're splitsville" fishbowl was in high school, it's actually worse for adults who couple-up through church, work or social organizations. While ostensibly grown-ups, people enjoy gossip just as much as they did as teenagers, and the reluctance to be everyone's entertainment is higher when there's not a graduation-day escape clause.

A lot of people, including myself, like being alone, at least 85% or so. I don't need someone to ask me "how was your day?" every single day. I don't need to fall asleep in someones's arms seven nights a week. Friday nights or weekends, it would be nice having someone there. But Monday thru Thursday, what free time I have isn't that hard to fill.

I like my home the way it is, my kid doesn't need a "new mommy," and after 40+ years of life I've developed some preferences and indiosychracies that would probably drive someone else up a wall if she had to try and put them into synch with her own preferences and indiosychracies on a daily basis.

I admit this isn't a universal view on the subject, but frankly, I think it's a valid one and I meet a lot of people who are in denial, and who see their situation as a yawning valley of lonliness between their only two alternatives: stupid booty calls on one side and that unattianable little "eternal honeymoon" cottage with the white picket fence on the other.

And finally, there's all that middle-age anger. I meet so many people who think they got the shit end of the stick from their ex, or their childhood, or the economy, etc. Going to a speed-dating event just to say "fuck off, fuck off, fuck off..." would be bliss for these people! One thing missing from speed dating is a mirror, so when you dismiss the person for being a "4," you aren't upgrading yourself in your mind's eye to a "9."

Not to say all 40-somethings are beyond the tech curve in modern dating (esp. you Dopers), but whenever I've looked through profile on online dating sites, I get the same feeling I did when I was little, looking at the JC Penny's Christams Catalog; which was OK for Johnny West action figures, but I find disconcerting for human beings. Someone once raved about how her sister met her guy thorugh e-harmony, and how, because they're both busy professionals, they have phone sex all the time.

Great. So we can now order up people over the computer, and fuck them over the phone.
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  #11  
Old 08-24-2007, 01:09 PM
Canadiangirl Canadiangirl is offline
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Well, what a small world! "My friends in Sutton". I grew up in Keswick!
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  #12  
Old 08-24-2007, 01:20 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiangirl
Well, what a small world! "My friends in Sutton". I grew up in Keswick!
Ah yes. Keswick. Where Suttonites go to see a movie.

I have to admit that I don't know Keswick very well--I grew up in Whitby and Oshawa--but after my friends bought a house in Sutton a couple of years ago, I began to go there.

It seems to be a nice litle beach town beginning to be undermined by Stupid McMansion Sprawl, especially on the back side along Woodbine Avemnue.

Last edited by Sunspace; 08-24-2007 at 01:24 PM..
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  #13  
Old 08-24-2007, 01:22 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Edit: removed test of duplicate post.

Last edited by Sunspace; 08-24-2007 at 01:24 PM..
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  #14  
Old 08-24-2007, 01:27 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zebra
So if you are tall, go speed dating.
Uh-oh. I'm 5'10, so I'm on the average there. Although I remember standing at a bus stop a couple of years ago and being half a head taller than everyone else there. And it was about eight people, all Asian women. Being so much taller than everyone was an odd feeling--I'm shorter than most of my family (at least the ones on my father's side).

Last edited by Sunspace; 08-24-2007 at 01:29 PM..
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  #15  
Old 08-24-2007, 02:59 PM
hajario hajario is online now
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I got together with my now ex-wife when I was 26 and we split when I was 41. I was really nervous about starting to date again, particularly after reading these types of threads here which seem to pop up about once a month. Contrary to what I read here, it was shockingly easy for me. That's not to say that it was all fun, it was ponderous as hell a lot of the time. It's a numbers game and you have to slog through until you meet your match.

It took me a year and a half to find love. In that time I would guess that I communicated with well over 100 women and went on at least 50 first dates. Three turned into two month mini-relationships and finally I met The One. We've been together for over seven months and she'll be fully moved in with me by mid-September.

I loved being alone too. I could be closed up in my house with my dog and a DSL connection for a week and not be bothered. I love being with her more. Both of us have had to make some adjustments but it's worth it.

My point is, and I have said this loads of times on here, that you have to get out there and meet people. Get over your aversion to the on-line thing and just do it. Quit feeling sorry for yourself and go to yourcity.craigslist.com or make a myspace profile and search for people with similar likes. Keep trying. It may take a while but eventually you will have to find someone. Be proactive.
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Old 08-24-2007, 03:09 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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I think part of it is what Slithy Tove pointed out - and also having an idea of what kind of relationships you're looking for is important. Do you want instant violins? Is it absolutely required to move in together or to marry?

And, given your interests... have you volunteered for Habitat for Humanity? When I was in Philly all they wanted from me was my money (which they didn't get), but in Miami I had several cool saturdays with them and met some very nice people.
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  #17  
Old 08-24-2007, 03:39 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nava
I think part of it is what Slithy Tove pointed out - and also having an idea of what kind of relationships you're looking for is important. Do you want instant violins? Is it absolutely required to move in together or to marry?

And, given your interests... have you volunteered for Habitat for Humanity? When I was in Philly all they wanted from me was my money (which they didn't get), but in Miami I had several cool saturdays with them and met some very nice people.
I've heard Bad Things about HfH. Apparently they have very exclusionary pro-Christian policies and are ruthless in business competition.

If HfH is the group I'm thinking of, they went into Belleville, Ontario, somehow acquired the business plans of rthe local re-use centre, then went into comprtition with the re-use centre, knocked them out of business, and then closed up. Seems free used stuff competes with their corporate sponsors' selling of new stuff.

And apparently they are not a charity building and giving away houses to the less-fortunate. No, they require their donors to get a mortgage and pay (or be foreclosed), just like any other lender.

I would very much like to be wrong about this.
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Old 08-24-2007, 03:47 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Man, that sucks, whether it's them or any other group.
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Old 08-24-2007, 03:50 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Arrghh. Forgot I was in the editing window and missed the lime limit... this is what I meant to say:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nava
I think part of it is what Slithy Tove pointed out - and also having an idea of what kind of relationships you're looking for is important. Do you want instant violins? Is it absolutely required to move in together or to marry?

And, given your interests... have you volunteered for Habitat for Humanity? When I was in Philly all they wanted from me was my money (which they didn't get), but in Miami I had several cool saturdays with them and met some very nice people.
Thanks, Nava. I'm looking towards marriage, family, kids, etc: a home. However, at my age, I think I should be looking for a woman who already has young children. It's too late for me to father kids myself; I'd be in my sixties when they were teenagers.

I've heard Bad Things about Habitat for Humanity, though. Apparently they have very exclusionary pro-Christian policies and are ruthless in business competition.

If HfH is the group I'm thinking of, they went into Belleville, Ontario, somehow acquired the business plans of the local re-use centre, then went into comprtition with the re-use centre, knocked them out of business, and then closed up. Seems free used stuff competes with their corporate sponsors' selling of new stuff. Not very ecological at all.

And apparently they are not a charity building and giving away houses to the less-fortunate, like I always thought. No, they require the recipients of their houuses to get a mortgage and pay (or be foreclosed), just like any other lender. It's not clear where the volunteer labour and donated materials come into play, then; to they sell the house at a much lower cost (good), or just pocket additional profit (not good).

I would very much like to be wrong about this. But until I find out for sure, I'm having nothing to do with them.

But that doesn't mean that they can't use the house-building techniques I and my friends are learning about; those are out in the open and anyone can use them. And every house built that way reduces our reliance on fragile external energy supplies and makes society stronger.
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  #20  
Old 08-24-2007, 04:11 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is offline
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Hijack: Are there any sex-oriented match sites that are on the up-and-up? (I.e., not a marketing venue for prostitutes.)
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  #21  
Old 08-24-2007, 04:18 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Hmm. Looking at Habitat for Humanity's website and the Wikipedia article, it's not as bad as I thought: they're basically selling cheaper houses, rather than giving away free ones. And they say that they do not require volunteers to be Christian. But they do talk about putting Christian principles into action and the "theology of the hammer".

Recipients of houses must put in a lot of their own work into the houses; they are evaluated for ability to pay a mortgage as well. The local 'affiliate' organisation select which families will receive houses. Perhaps I mis-heard an echo of how one affiliate selected families.

It sounds like a good idea, but executed very conservatively.
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  #22  
Old 08-24-2007, 04:19 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrainGlutton
Hijack: Are there any sex-oriented match sites that are on the up-and-up? (I.e., not a marketing venue for prostitutes.)
LavaLife has an "Intimate" section intended for hookups, but I've never used it.
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  #23  
Old 08-24-2007, 04:45 PM
hajario hajario is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrainGlutton
Hijack: Are there any sex-oriented match sites that are on the up-and-up? (I.e., not a marketing venue for prostitutes.)
You can fairly easily use the regular ones for that, particularly craigslist.
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  #24  
Old 08-24-2007, 09:32 PM
UntouchedTakeaway UntouchedTakeaway is offline
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Good luck. As a woman at 44, I'm either (A) attracting 24 year olds - in which I have no interest whatsoever, (B) older men of 55+ - while the age factor is not an issue, the fact that a good percentage of them are divorced at least once with enough baggage to stock a Hermes boutique or (C) totally invisible to the rest of the male population

Thank God for NetFlix & a good book.

VCNJ~
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