Let’s be honest for a moment and put it on the table; dating in your 40s is pretty grim (ok, personal experience talking, it is bleaker than a public service station restroom at the side of a deserted motorway). At 40 the competition is steeper and it becomes a whole lot more confusing and you’ll find the type of men in the over 40s dating pool very different.
Here are some truths that could help you navigate the tricky path of mature dating.
The men are having a mid-life crisis
Men like younger women. A lot of men in their 30’s and 40’s seem to have an awakening moment and panic that they’re getting old and as a knee jerk reaction go out and find the perkiest 25-year-old they can find in an attempt to settle down. Even if you are near their own age they will still see you as ‘old’ and dismiss your profile. Harsh. You may well be witty, successful, outgoing and smart but none of that matters in their heads once you are in the over 40’s club.
You attract that toy boys
An older, gorgeous, confident and self-assured woman is an absolute lure for a man in his late 20s. To them, the age gap works in their favour as you’ll be comfortable and well skilled in the bedroom and the perfect teacher for them to learn some tricks. It may suit you to end up with a 25-year-old toy-boy between the sheets but you’ll struggle to find someone old enough to suit your lifestyle and goals if you go down this path. Think late night booty calls and the wonders of dick pics…really??
You love your kids but not everyone else does
Having kids and attempting to get back to dating and relationships is tough. All the time you are mindful of their needs and emotions. You’re careful not to introduce them to every date, you question when to introduce them to the date and then you’re also trying to juggle a date around organising child care. For some guys the fact you’re a mother will discount you instantly; remember… that says way more about them than it does about you. Equally, you don’t need to introduce them to everyone unless you think that person is going to have some level of permanence in your life. If you enter a relationship be upfront about your kids and whether you realistically want more and you’ll soon find out which guys are serious about sticking around.
You’re set in your ways
Dating in your 40’s means you know what you want – this translates to you’re stubborn and won’t deviate from your ideal situation. Your list of dating dealbreakers is far more set in stone than it was when you were 25, and if you’re looking to settle down and start a family this is now crunch time and you’re going to be super picky about it.
There’s too much choice
Your phone is full of dating apps, you have RSI in your thumb from continual swiping and you’ve moved to second base (WhatsApp) with several potentially interested parties. Stop! Too much choice is a bad thing and makes it harder for you to spot the genuine guys who are real relationship material. If you want a partner with a similar professional mindset and age to your own then it is quite possibly you need to be looking at mature dating websites rather than the usual hookup apps.
You’re flying solo
Chances are that by this point all your other female friends are married, also have kids or are in long term relationships. This means that you’ve lost your partner in crime who will pull you back to reality on nights out after too many mojitos. You are flying solo with no wing woman in your corner to guide you. It can be awkward talking to your friends about your dating exploits when their lives are on a very different path and can leave you feeling a little isolated. Advice? Confide in one close friend who you really trust with your dating tales and keep it between the two of you – their advice will be invaluable and more genuine if they feel like it is something just between the two of you.
Dating in your late 30s and early 40s is complexed. Shapewear becomes your best friend and there’s a whole text acronym sub culture you don’t understand, but on the plus side you don’t have to justify your stream of one night stands to your mother anymore.
Ultimately, don’t lose hope, when you fall in love as cheesy as this sounds it really is something very special and if it was so easy to come by, well all the sense of mystery around it would be gone and it would lose the magic.
Remember at the heart of it you are an amazing woman and anyone will be lucky to have you….just be patient, don’t settle for second best and keep on searching.
Let’s be honest, dating is not all rainbows and puppy dogs. It takes time and patience and there can be disappointments and rejections along the way. And it’s those rejections we’d like to address to help you navigate them more easily.
Don’t take it personally
You have no idea what reasons the other person has for not getting back in touch, so fretting about it does more harm than good. We know it’s not always that simple, especially if you have dated the person for a while. Think about it this way, if they don’t share your feelings about the relationship, isn’t it best if you move on?
No one likes to be rejected and it’s perfectly normal to feel upset and hurt at first. And if you’ve been dropped without any explanation it can hit you especially hard. It’s important, however, to practice self-kindness, as blaming yourself will only hurt you further. Unless you’ve been given a very clear reason why it’s not worked out, avoid jumping to conclusions as to why it didn’t last. There may be many reasons why he/she decided to break it off and they don’t have to be your fault.
Avoid a victim mindset
On the flipside of blaming yourself is blaming the other party. After a rejection, it can be very easy to slip into a victim mentality by generalising behaviour (ie. all men/woman are…). This may feel good at first, and it certainly feels easier than looking in the mirror, but in the long-term, this mindset will sabotage any real chances at finding new love and keep you feeling stuck and powerless. Again, acknowledge your feelings but don’t dwell.
After a rejection, especially when we listen to our critical inner voice, it’s easy for self-doubt and insecurities to raise their ugly heads and can leave us feeling less sure of ourselves. When we’ve been left by someone, we may find ourselves feeling out of place. It may become difficult to visit certain places, see certain people, or partake in activities for a while. However, this situation presents an opportunity to really connect with our individuality, your own needs. What is it that you enjoy doing? Who are you outside of a relationship? Focussing on defining yourself anew again, can get you out of heartbreak-mode much faster. Realising that you have a whole life outside of whatever rejection you’ve experienced, and that life will go on.
So you’ve been on more than one date and you seem to have instant chemistry. You’ve been texting for a few days since your last date, and then, POOF! Your match has vanished into thin air.
Welcome to the murky world of ghosting.
Ghosting is a term that is becoming more and more frequently heard in the dating circles and so in our latest blog we thought we’d do a little research and find out just how people feel when they’ve been ‘ghosted’ by a date.
After quizzing some friends and asking around on social media these are the statements that came out:-
- Makes you feel worthless
- Makes you feel confused
- Leads to you mistrusting other potential dates
- Leads to a ‘why do I bother’ mentality
- You feel disrespected
- Feeds insecurities
Let’s face it none of those feelings and reactions are positive and dating should be positive, it should be adventure, an opportunity to meet new people, try new things, have new experiences and make lots of memories.
Ghosting sucks, and this article about a girl who was ghosted by a guy she’d been seeing exclusively for six months (!) shows that it’s not just the early day’s relationships that fall prey to this cowardly technique.
So what can you do if this happens to you in the world of online dating?
- Take a positive attitude – it is not you with the problem. If someone ghosts you it is highly likely they have done it before. A leopard cannot change its spots remember!
- Don’t be tempted to keep messaging for an answer as to why – you won’t get one, and if you do it will be lies, it would see a classic excuse is for the ghoster to say that someone close to them has died and their life has spiralled out of control.
- Don’t change who you are – remember you shouldn’t change just to fit into someone else’s lifestyle. If they cannot handle all of your AWESOMENESS then they are not worth your time and effort.
- Don’t give up – get back online and start making new connections. Relationships don’t just happen they take effort. So be dynamic and start something. Just don’t desperation date (more on this later!)
- Always and most important – remember YOU DIDN’T MESS ANYTHING UP.
Breaking up with someone is never easy to do, but ghosting is really cowardly and more brutal than actually being honest with someone. Focus on yourself, going out with friends and ultimately holding your own and remembering your manners when everyone around you forgets theirs.
Has ghosting happened to you? How did you cope with it and what tips have you got for others in case in happens to them.
You don’t keep secrets
Happy couples know that keeping secrets will only hurt their partner, and their relationship so they are open and honest with each other.
You have fun
In a healthy relationship you can be yourself and that includes being able to make a fool of yourself. When you are comfortable with one another, you are more willing to open up and show your silly side.
You share responsibilities
When one person spends Saturday morning cleaning and doing the laundry while the other one chills out in front of the TV, it’s not an even share of responsibilities. Divvying up the work is a sign of an equal and healthy partnership that is based on mutual respect. You are a team in all aspects of life.
You spend time on your own
In a healthy relationship you can and are both encouraged to have your own life, circle of friends and interests. There’s no jealousy or constant checking up on the other person.
You appreciate each other
As you get comfy in your relationship, routine sets and you could start to take each other for granted. However happy couples continue to make an effort and remain appreciative of each other. They remember why they fell in love in the first place.
Open communication is the cornerstone to a happy and healthy relationship. Expressing of and listening to feelings without the fear of being judged or criticised is a sign of emotional maturity and encourages trust between two people.
You are intimate
Sex is another form of communication and couples who have sex on a regular basis are often happier than couples who don’t.
Did you know?
If PlentyMoreFish were a country, it would be larger than The Cook Islands!
…and it’s growing…tremendously. The number of PMF visitors overtook the population of Anguilla only last week.
So what would a plentymorefish.com naked meetup look like? (I hear you ask!)
If daily PMF visitors were to meet up…in the nude, it would look a little bit like this. However, we don’t recommend you doing it as you may get yourself into a spot of bother…probably with the police. 😐
Oh and by the way, this would actually set a new world record!
There we are then. The answers to the two questions I know you were all dying to ask 🙂
*Figures based on daily visitors.
Hi fellow daters!
Just received an email of Wendy. She met her Phil on Plenty More Fish and we think that’s pretty fab, right? So here’s a big cyber kiss :-* from us to Wendy for sharing their story and we hope you guys the best and happiest future together! x
Phil mentioned that he was on Plenty More Fish and I thought that I’d give it a try. We saw each others profiles and made contact online. We’d met previously, but it was fun having a chat and interesting to read what interested the both of us. We got to know one another and the friendship developed; we met at our local modern jive group, as we both enjoy dancing and have very similar interests. When we danced, our eyes met and it was as if the rest of the world vanished. We now see each other every day, were inseperable!
Thank you P.M.F, you helped to bring us two together. We’ll have to see whats in store for us now, but we ll keep you up to date!
Wendy & Phil
Ready to go fishing? Cast your net at Plentymorefish.com . Registration is FREE and you could be browsing for singles in your area right away!
Remember last Tuesday when we posted Tim & Sherrie’s story? Well, that was Tim’s version of events, and now it’s time to share Sherrie’s.
I really thought going on a date site wasn’t for me. All I can say is I have met the most amazing man and I haven’t been so happy for many years. I started speaking to Tim just after new years day. Tim would wink and I would do the same. After a few weeks I gave up, then out of the blue, Tim asked me if I wanted to meet. A week later we met at London Bridge 27 Jan 13 at midday, Tim wanted the day to be special. We went on to Covent garden, well the day was special. We were like kids again, I have not felt so comfortable in a long time, it was magic. After spending 10 hours together, we text the next day and been together ever since.
We are going on holiday soon, I’ve meet the parents and Tim’s kids. We plan to go to the North East soon, so Tim can meet my family. Tim has also been invited to my sister’s wedding next years, so fingers crossed we might be next [Maz: keeping our fingers firmly crossed for you two].
I’m not a person to fall in love, but when we met a London Bridge, it was magic. For the first time in my life, I’m really happy.
Thank You, Sherrie and Tim xx
We love that both took the time to write in and share their story will us all. We are thrilled for you both and wish you a wonderful time and long and happy future.
Your Plenty More Fish team xxx
Your first date with that delicious single you met on Plenty More Fish is here. You’ve been chatting to each other for a few weeks now and you are really excited to meet in person. Only now that she/he is standing in front of you, you feel a bit disappointed. Bummer.
But what happened?
It’s okay and nothing to worry about. You may suffer from a mild case of Imaginitis Idealicus. It’s not contagious, but it can cause unrealistic expectations of your date, which could lead to disappointment. You see, when we like someone our hopeful brains can take over and create idealistic images of Mr/Miss Right. So, how do you manage this condition?
Do like the cucumber and be cool. Give yourself permission to keep an open mind and look past those assumptions of yours. Give your date and yourself a chance to get to know each other. Enjoy your date and try to get to know the other person. But be warned! You could end up actually liking him/her. Terrible, right? ;o)
On a serious note, we don’t want you to throw your common sense overboard. If you are not sure about someone or if they quite obviously lied to you, we advise you to cut your date short. Listen to your gut and check out the ‘Meeting in Person’ section of our Online Dating Safety Tips. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
But coming back to your date….it’s okay if they don’t turn out to be that perfect catch. There’s always Plenty More Fish in the sea!
Tell us, have you ever met someone who was not what you expected? What did you do?
As a member of Plenty More Fish, you have the option to meet new people from all over the UK and Ireland but would you message those who live a bit further afield? What’s the cut off point? More importantly, would you be prepared to commit to a long distance relationship for the foreseeable future?
I guess it’s all very much down to personal preference. Some people like to know their partner is always around and others prefer their own space. For the latter, long distance relationships are bound to be more successful. It also depends on what you want from the relationship. If you want something a little bit more laid back then the distance might even be a good thing!s a member of Plenty More Fish, you have the option to meet new people from all over the UK and Ireland but would you message those who live a bit further afield? What’s the cut off point? More importantly, would you be prepared to commit to a long distance relationship for the foreseeable future?
There seems to pros and cons with a long distance relationship. One positive is that you’ll probably make a bigger deal of the time you have together and plan something great for the weekend but the negative may be that you can’t be as spontaneous as you’d like. Hmm…
We’ve had some great feedback from our followers on Twitter – so thanks! It seems most of you think long distance relationships have a higher chance of working now than ever before due to the numerous methods of communication such as Facebook, Twitter, Email, Text, Skype etc. Others think that if the cost of travel were cheaper, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. The general consensus was that you have to like the other person enough from the word go to make the extra effort associated with long distance relationships. Which, is sometimes difficult to figure out straight away.
What do you think? Have you/ would you give long distance relationships a go?
I recently came across a 2008 university study discussing the way Rom-Coms can help to promote unrealistic expectations about love and relationships. They found that we are influenced by portrayals in the media – more than we realise.
This made me wonder whether love and relationship expectations could stem even further than this? I remembered all the Disney movies I used to watch as a kid, my burning desire to run (or fly) off into the sunset with Aladdin and my dream for thinner, more lady-like feet so I could easily slip them into THAT dainty glass slipper.
Without hesitation, I created a poll and took to Plenty More Fish fans and followers on Twitter and Facebook. As you can see a whopping 62% of you reckon fairy tales do give out an unrealistic view of love and relationships.
Phew, so it’s not just me.
Thanks to my childhood obsession with Disney films I’m adamant I adopted an unrealistic view of love and relationships from a very early age. Prince charming rescuing you and dropping everything to be with you, sure. Being able to date a beauty even though you look like an angry hairy beast, absolutely. Stealing the heart of a handsome prince regardless of being half girl, half fish, of course. Oh and sharing a bowl of spaghetti bolognaise could in fact be the most romantic thing you’ll ever do.
The latter- not true, for sure.
I’m not saying BAN DISNEY…I LOVE Disney and I’m not saying you can’t live happily ever after. I just think perhaps they should’ve come up with a sequel to Cinderella, Beauty & The Beast, Aladin, The Lady & The Tramp…etc and show that relationships actually need work. When the honeymoon period is over, most relationships have there ups and downs and good communication is absolutely key.
Oh and DON’T get me started on period dramas. 😉
Jen from Plenty More Fish x