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Senior Dating Tips: First Date Do's and Don'ts
By Top10BestDatingSites Staff
The dating game can be challenging even for those in their twenties and thirties so it’s hardly surprising if, as a ‘senior’, you feel more than a little overwhelmed by the prospect of finding love all over again. Whether you’ve recently emerged from a long-term marriage, you are widowed or simply haven’t been able to find that special someone, you may be forgiven for thinking that you’re too old for mature dating. However, such concerns are unfounded as the over-50s is the fastest growing group in the internet dating industry, with dedicated websites such as Mature Dating UK; your only concern should be that your last date may have been longer ago than you care to recall, so brush up on the do’s and don’ts to make that first date a night to remember.
Plan for the next date
A first date is, of course, a sort of ‘dry run’ to see whether you like each other enough to want to meet for a second time. With this in mind, anticipate plenty of intelligent conversation on your first date – senior dating means that you’ve got potentially decades of each other’s life to catch up on – so plan for an appropriate setting where you can engage each other’s attention such as a caf? or park, rather than mid-row in a darkened cinema where the chance to chat is non-existent.
Avoid excessive intimacy
A first date in your fifties or beyond is bound to be potentially nerve-wracking and, even if you’re feeling completely at ease, appreciate that your partner may not be. A candlelit dinner for two in the corner of a lavish restaurant might seem to be the perfect setting for a first date, but it may suggest a level of intimacy that a slightly edgy partner may find intimidating. Alternatively, you could meet over lunch (a time of day when enjoying a meal together comes over more casually and less intimately) and combine this with another activity afterwards such as visiting an attraction. You’ll have more to chat about and the chance to find out where you have any shared interests.
Agree what is off-limits
Mature dating means that you have years of life experience behind you, much of which may well be relevant to why you’re seeking a new partner at this stage in your life. However, tales of divorce or relationship breakdown don’t necessarily make good conversation so agree before you meet whether to leave this topic off the agenda for the first date; after all, there will hopefully be plenty more opportunities to discover what has brought you both to exploring senior dating. Save it for another occasion.
If you’ve arrived at mature dating after the end of a relationship, it may be that you’re seeking a fresh start with a different partner, someone with whom you can build and enjoy the next part of your life. But in situations where you’ve experienced a painful relationship breakdown, or you’ve not been a willing party in this, it can be tempting to compare a new partner with an old flame and consequently never to overcome this hurdle and to settle into a new relationship. Approach every date as the first day in the rest of your life and take time to get to know a potential partner for who they are, not who they aren’t. Most importantly, be yourself; desperation will only make you needy, so take your time.
Meet in a group
A first date needn’t be a one-to-one away from the company of friends and, if you’re nervous or worried about embarking on a first date after so many years, consider meeting as part of a group. This could be to engage in an activity for which you both have a shared passion, such as dancing, wine tasting or sport, or among friends at a social occasion if you already mix in the same social circle. You’ll feel more at ease and less pressured that the date should end with a particular outcome.
Have an exit strategy
First dates don’t always work out, whatever your age, so know when it is right to call time on the occasion. Always meet in a public place and make sure that a friend or family member knows where you are. If you feel that your date simply isn’t what you’re looking for, end the meeting respectfully and honestly.
Mature dating need not be nerve-wracking but bear in mind that it is only natural to feel a little apprehensive when meeting a new partner on a first date – if you cast your mind back, you probably felt the same in your youth! Most importantly, be yourself, keep an open mind and aim to relax and enjoy the company, whatever the outcome of the date.
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