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Scared to try dating again
July 2, 2007
8:25 pm
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jasminum sambac
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Hello everyone. I've just registered and look forward to the discussions.

I guess I'm asking how people start dating again, if they don't have any recent experience dating non-narcissists.

By "dating" I mean engaging in some kind of social contact that doesn't have too many strings on it yet, while you can look the guy over.

And even though "how" is a wierd question: you just DO it, I do ask how

Part of the uncertainty comes from my age: I'm 59...I did date, back there when there were curfews, and had relationships later on, but I'm so post playing the field. I'm a bad fit with consumer culture (you know: try it on and toss).

So let me ask a technique question of younger posters: where's that intermediate zone, before commitment, where you can get to know a guy but he's not in a full court press for something, anymore? Is it still going out for coffee?

That's a lot o' caffeine we'd be talking about, since I am expecting to be VERY wobbly telling whoever it is that I would or wouldn't want something, and if need be, making it stick.

July 3, 2007
4:14 pm
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Honolulugal
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Hi Jasmin!

Welcome!

We sure don't have all the answers, but an ongoing discussion about the rigors of dating can be found on the "Darn Dating" thread.

We just kick around ideas and dissect our mostly online dates.

Care to join in the agony? Hope to see you there!

Aloha,

H-gal

July 3, 2007
4:51 pm
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glittered when he walked
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Jasminum,

well, in my experience it's all necessarily subjective isn't it? I mean some folks want to feel each other for a long time before they move on to other things...others, not so long. what's important is, how long will you require...and i don't think that there are any hard and fast rules for that.

July 3, 2007
7:15 pm
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StronginHim77
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Jas -

We are the same generation. I am 57...widowed nearly four years ago. It has been really hard adjusting to the "single" life. I tried forming a relationship three times and wound up with two narcissists and one borderline personality. NOT a good outcome.

I have stepped back totally from any hopes of connecting with any man. This might sound overly negative, (and I hope I am wrong), but it seems that single men in our age bracket are either hopelessly mentally disordered or someone else's reject for reasons which become obvious when we get close to them.

If you are lonely, (and I sure have those moments, after twenty years of married living), try new activities like ballroom dancing, joining a gym ("Curves" worked great for me because I am self-conscious about working out around a bunch of young "jocks"), signing up for a college class or single activities, offered by your local church. The possibilities for socializing are endless. And you never know- you might meet a nice man in the process.

It was, indeed, VERY different in our youth. We didn't jump in bed before getting married. (Well, "nice" girls didn't, anyway!) Dating went by certain "guidelines." Our parents had to know who was taking us out, where we were going and we had curfews. If things worked out with a guy, we would "go steady," wear his class ring, etc. It was a different era.

I hope you keep posting. Maybe we can work one another's courage up, eh?

- Ma Strong

July 3, 2007
7:37 pm
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fantas
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Hi Jasminum, Welcome to the site. Well, I am much younger and I find the dating world a little intimidating and confusing as well. Ma is right, you should go out there, have fun doing whatever it is you love to do. At the very least, you may meet some people who love what you do as well. When you meet that man, who might be the one, my advise is to be friends with him first. Know what you want and don't want and don't waste time with people who don't match. At least not as potential mates. You can be friends. The beauty of this era is that the women can call all the shots too:). Consider dating younger too, there are some mature younger men too who would appreciate you... Keep us posted.

July 3, 2007
8:45 pm
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Rasputin
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Jasmin~

We are all scared of dating. In fact, due to the fact that healthy people seem to be in the minority - I honestly find it hard to find a healthy friend from both genders. So, you're not alone hon!

The main thing is to groom yourself, take care of yourself, have a nice cut, may be wear a perfume if you want to, look neat even if dressed simply and just keep it plain simple.

I honestly believe that we can find our Mr. Right anywhere....could be in a grocery store, drug store, public library, park, restaurant, coffee shop while reading a book of with gf. The bottom line is to smile and be friendly and open. I tried the internet dating and had a Negative experience out of it. So, I am out of this type of dating.

Remember like attracts like. If you are a healthy person, you would attract someone healthy and vice versa. That's why we must 1st and foremost become healthy b4 we start looking for Mr. Right.

Blessings!

July 4, 2007
9:24 pm
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jasminum sambac
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Thank you all for the welcome.

Honolulugal,
after I posted I did see the “Darn Dating” thread…thanks for the invite to it. My post was enough related to that thread that I wouldn’t mind if the moderator merged my thread with it, if that’s the way things are done on this forum…thanks for the welcome.

Glittered when he walked,
I agree…you have to take each relationship on its own.

StronginHim77,
thanks for the straight talk about several things. Just one: You wrote “This might sound overly negative, (and I hope I am wrong), but it seems that single men in our age bracket are either hopelessly mentally disordered or someone else's reject for reasons which become obvious when we get close to them.” I’m of two opinions on that one. First, it’s true that by the time a person gets into her fifties, many well-adjusted, relationship oriented men are already paired up.

So I agree.

And since there’s some tendency for guys to court and link up with younger women, here we are, Ma Strong, not younger women. And about the age thing, I have a lot of contact with my 94 year old mother who moved to a retirement community of 5000 over two decades ago, so I’ve had a long time to look over how men in their 70s and up tend to act and I don’t want THAT…no crotchety old guy for me whose culture growing up was that women did all the work at home and they in their retirement are at loose ends because they have no work and they refuse to volunteer so they grump around and badger their wives. As the thirteen year olds say, eeewwww. So the age "window of opportunity" is pretty narrow, it seems: I'm looking for a guy who could get sincerely interested in a 59 year old woman who isn't an old codger.

Yeah, sometimes it seems like there are a lot of as you say hopelessly mentally disordered people in society these days, men and women. Or very unhappy ones. (Sigh) I guess one thing that having had some therapy does give you is some more awareness of that.

But (here’s the other side of it) my thing, and I don’t know if it’s your thing at all, is that I really was groomed to be a codependent caretaker from childhood, so in the past, I’d pick out those narcissists and borderlines for serious relationships. Meaning that I would tend to choose mentally disordered guys for my closest relations. Meaning that there might have been other choices (even among our slim options these days).

My handwringing is over how (grin) not to take one of THOSE into my home and heart too fast, and how to give a guy a chance who is not overinflated or demands to be the center of the universe….that’s a heck of a how, to me. Since I haven’t practiced giving manipulators and neerdowells the boot early on, I’m nervous about that, too…actually very nervous, because that WILL be new.

Yes, indeed, Ma Strong, dating was different back then. Everything that you wrote I did too. I’ll take you up on your offer.

Rasputin,
you said “Remember like attracts like. If you are a healthy person, you would attract someone healthy and vice versa. That's why we must 1st and foremost become healthy b4 we start looking for Mr. Right.”

At this point in my life yes, that's my bottom line: just grow, aim for coming to understand and change for the better. I do think however that that “healthy before looking for Mr. Right” would mean I’d never date, though because to me (as I look at my life) getting healthy is a neverending process. I’m coming off a three year moratorium on getting involved with anyone, because I did need some time to concentrate on changing some of my habits. If I'd wait until I got much healthier, I'd (grin) have my false teeth in a cup at night and would be stumping along on a cane...Me and whitehaired Mr. Right, doing a double Fred Astaire with the canes.

But I’ve got your point, and I think you’re right, especially that healthy people tend to hang out with healthy people. Thanks.

Fantas,
your advice to first be friends is gold, and I’m going to do it (if I figure out how). Through hard experience, I know that you’re right.

July 5, 2007
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I, too, was groomed to be a codependent caretaker from childhood. And I live in Southern Florida, the Elephant Burial Grounds for our Nation. There are retirement communities EVERYWHERE, so I have had tons of exposure to the "older set." These men are something else. If married, they are usually making their wives wait on them hand & foot, (the way it was expected to be in our generation). If single, they are obsessed with their money/assets, their health, food, the weather, etc. Really fascinating guys. NOT.

Most are highly self-absorbed and looking for a combination maid/housekeeper/cook/laundress/mother/girlfriend. Gross. Not my cup of tea.

So, the prospects seem pretty bleak. I have finally come to the point where I am no longer LOOKING. If someone great stumbles across my path and I get hit by lightning, I might notice him. Otherwise, I am focusing my efforts on my own recovery from codependency and on adjusting to being single forever. It just might happen, even though I am slender, built, reasonably attractive for my age, a good conversationalist, dancer, etc. I've got the attributes to get noticed (heck, three cruddy relationships attest to my getting "noticed"), but I am no longer willing to settle for damaged goods, the personality-disordered or another woman's reject.

It will take a MIRACLE. In the meantime, I am learning to set goals for myself and entertain myself.

- Ma Strong

July 5, 2007
3:30 pm
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truthBtold
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I don't think that it is fair to some of the older gents that are out there which do not fit into the stereo-typical picture that some of you are painting. (I'm just being honest here.)

People are people (as Quincy Jones once said in travelling the world over.)

Jasmine, I would say for starters, if you are looking for non-narcissists men - you might want to try joining a local volunteer function as I don't imagine a whole lot of narcissists would spend their time helping other folks.

Also, be clear coming out of the gate what you want. Friendship for starters? Commom interests?

Just my 2 cents.

July 5, 2007
3:35 pm
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truthBtold
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ps - In re-reading, I failed to mention the other portion of Quincy Jones' observations...and that was that there were cheap people, greedy people. giving people, honest people, manipulators, straight-shooters etc....the world over.

July 5, 2007
9:46 pm
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All you can attract is the level you are at. Eg. Where would you say you were out of 1 to 10 feelings, emotions, mental, money etc. etc. Say you would say 7 well you can get a 7 man then. But you say you want a 10? well are you a 10? lol

Raise you own levels and you will find someone to match your interests. You will find them at the places you go to raise your levels, ei -12 step programs, retreats, landmark forums, yoga, laugh groups etc. Actually Dr. Paul is really cool. He just put out a new book called the Secret Psychology of How We Fall in Love

Haven't read it yet but here is a clip from his July newsletter. He also has get togethers.
eg- of his stuff
It's Okay to Fail, Okay to Feel, and Okay to be Wrong

If you or a woman you know would like to know how to COMPLETELY assess her dating and relationships easily and accurately, then sign them up for this newsletter with their permission. Go to womenshappiness.com and sign up.

I will continue to answer your questions, and I read every email personally (please limit things to two brief paragraphs and no seriously multiple emails please, at least allow some space and time in between writing me). . ..

Back to me. Some good advice is to be friends for a long time if they are in 12 step programs. Ideally you want someone who has had their spiritual awakening and knows we are one. Good luck. 🙂 amy

July 5, 2007
10:07 pm
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Hi Jas

You may want to look at the Thread titled What are the signs of a jerk when dating/relationships? I'll move it up for you.

DM

July 5, 2007
10:10 pm
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Oops never mind, I see you already have been posting there : ) I'm not dating myself but it seems there is a lot of good advice on that thread.

DM

July 6, 2007
9:20 pm
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jasminum sambac
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TruthBtold, you wrote "I don't think that it is fair to some of the older gents that are out there which do not fit into the stereo-typical picture that some of you are painting. (I'm just being honest here.)"

Thanks for sticking up for the non-stereotypical. I agree, and I've met some gallant, outward looking elderly men. One lives across the street from me and he and his wife are voyaging bravely into the difficulties of their aging. He's always kind, never rough, is positive, despite some really serious health problems, and just the other day acted as kind of an elder of the street, crossing over to ask a neighbor politely to cut his 18" high grass and pick up his trash in the front yard.

What I think Ma Strong and I were talking about is guys who nobody would disagree are in that group I described.

July 7, 2007
10:50 am
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jasminum sambac
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Hi, again, StronginHim, aka younger sister.

In your last post, you wrote :"I am focusing my efforts on my own recovery from codependency and on adjusting to being single forever."

I've been s-l-o-w-w-w to get it and some of me still isn't on the new page, but "adjusting to being single forever" may be a key...who knows what will happen in the future, but I can't tell you how much time I spent angsting over trying to be someone's other half (where I didn't exist or feel happy unless I was the moth around his flame).

You and I have written about the statistical odds of finding a non grandiose life partner, at our age...it is true that a lot of the more adjusted men our age and up are married.

And 😀 to make it worse, which I know you know if you're in that what did you call it Elephant Burial Ground (haahahaha; a friend of mine called Luby's Cafeteria God's Waiting Room...that's very not p.c.), our sex furthermore outlives the other sex on the average...so (grin) the potential dating pool begins leaving the planet faster than our statistical group does.

NEVERtheless, I don't see any better way than the way you're talking about for yourself.

Of course don't prejudge and not even find out about the guy, but working on one's own responsibility and growth, not expecting it to be some gift that someone else give you seems to be a key to happier life, with or without a guy. "adjusting to being single forever" means to me biting the bullet and understanding-and-acting that these fixes are not to be temporary, time-biding things until the next guy in the old pattern shows up to do the old pattern with you.

All best.

July 7, 2007
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Yes, we face a shrinking dating pool...with many ineligibles (the grandiose [narcissists], the mentally disordered [borderlines and sociopaths], the addicted [alcoholics, porn, etc.] and the divorced (translation: someone else's reject). Not a very pretty pool. And yes - they want someone twenty years younger. Or immensely rich. Not a pretty pool at all.

I am finally resolved to go it alone for the rest of my life. This has taken alot of pressure off. It's ok now if I have my roots done every THIRD week, instead of every SECOND week. (Who cares if a tad of root shows?) I have discontinued the pricey botox around my eyes which means I now have bona fide wrinkles whenever I grin or grown. Feel like a female version of Rip Van Winkle.

I have three closets full of beautiful clothes, shoes, etc. and two giant chests of jewelry, but I live in two baggy pairs of shorts which I alternate with faded t-shirts. Not a pretty sight. But who cares? No one to see.

My make-up expenditures have plummeted to records lows and so have my gas bills, since I rarely drive anywhere, except the grocery store, drug store and church once a week.

I have begun doing all my own yardwork (and there is ALOT of yardwork in southern Florida during the rainy season!). I journal alot and spend alot of time on these threads, helping whomever...

But do I believe a personal life with another partner awaits me? NO. I believe I am done. And I am coming around to acceptance of this.

What will I miss the most? Besides companionship? DANCING. I was a VERY good ballroom dancer who lacks a partner. So, I have packed away the dancing shoes. Heck...it was an expensive sport, anyway.

- Ma Strong

July 7, 2007
11:51 am
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risingfromtheashes
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Ladies,

I am younger, so can't bring anything to the table here, except to know that dating at ANY age kinda stinks in my opinion...the frog kissing is no fun and there are too many toads out there.

And knowing you are predisposed to sticking around longer than is healthy with an unhealthy guy...just makes it that much harder.

I applaud you for trying.

I wonder - could life be satisfying if you had companionship of friends - women friends? I think of movies with older, active women in it, who have such an active social life, but very little involvement with men...they look happy....I know these types of friendships exist...just wonder if it's "enough" for the average person.

My mom lives in one of the retirement communities in florida...with dad...who is older...I hope mom grows some friends down there, cuz with dad's drinking, I don't think he'll really live long...and mom is young...it would be great to know she has an active social life, full of fun and pleasure and laughs.

Perhaps if you had such a thing, life wouldn't be so lonely and boring and it may fill the need a man would? (other than intimacy of course).

I dunno, my mom is 55 this year, I couldn't see her dating and starting over...tho I would love to see her find a healthier partner and be happy in her later years.

I'm rambling here...I am scared to date at any age...and give you credit for still considering it later in life. If I still have a sex drive at that age, I know I would still want a man...if not for that, I think I may be fine just having fun on my own, doing my own thing, answering to nobody, sleeping in when I want, going where I want, when I want and just enjoying life as much as possible.

I don't want to be the little old couple that goes to walmart to pick up their pills on mondays, to the post office on tuesdays, to bingo on wednesdays and to the grocery on thursdays and don't EVER suggest we deviate from our routine. I know many older couples like that and it's kind of scary!

July 7, 2007
12:14 pm
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jasminum sambac
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risingfrom the ashes, right, I think women friends are good, I've got one very very dear one here, and a couple who've moved away and are email connected, and plenty of acquaintances. But depending on sexual orientation, there's a drive for that intimate partner. Some of it is society telling you that people are "normal" if they're paired up (which Ma Strong is getting free of, I think), some of it is your own desires.

I don't know about this aging thing...I feel like I'm just starting into it, but so far, everything biological is still there...on things like sex it's kind of like doing Tai Chi instead of doing Kung Fu, but it's still kickboxing, just the same...I don't know if that metaphor made sense. It's all still there, just different.

Woo, that last that you wrote, about being a little old lady/old hubby team doing everything together was scary, like synchronized swimming was scary 😀

Ma Strong, you and I could talk about yardwork. You sure read like you have a lot of courage. You go, girl.

July 7, 2007
12:26 pm
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risingfromtheashes ~ "I dunno, my mom is 55 this year, I couldn't see her dating and starting over...tho I would love to see her find a healthier partner and be happy in her later years." Why not? Isn't she only 20 years older than you are??

jasminum sambac ~ "sex it's kind of like doing Tai Chi instead of doing Kung Fu" Ha ha ha ha! Are you sure it's that different? I thought this is how it gets done when you are really old.

July 7, 2007
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I am 57 and my sex life with the N-husband this past winter was OVER THE TOP...better than ever. So, sex is not a problem at this age. Not for me, anyway.

But I am no longer willing to tolerate a bad partner, just to have an intimate relationship that includes sex.

- Ma Strong

July 7, 2007
5:40 pm
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Well, I am only less than a week out of the 3 yr relationship I was in. I don't want to date. I don't know HOW to date. I know how to be part of a couple. I was married at 22 and met this man soon after my divorce. I didn't date much in high school because I went to a Christian school and my mother was an alcoholic. I wasn't a prime candidate. I know that I would love to have someone put their arms around me and hold me while I slept. I haven't slept well in days. All I can do is cry at the drop of a hat. Some friends of "ours" are going to his new beach condo for dinner tonight. I had called this morning to invite them to dinner at my house but he had already invited them down there. The condo was my idea! I look at where I came from to where I am now and it definately isn't better. I have gone from a 3000 sq ft house to a 900 sq ft house. I feel guilty as a mother that my child is living like this when she was born into better.
Friends suggest that I try to meet someone else, but I don't know how. What do you say and do on a regular date? I don't want to drag a string of men through my childs life. Where do you meet anyone? What do you say? I am not typically the life of the party if left to my own devices. I don't have an outgoing personality and I never learned how to flirt.
I know there will come a time when I want to have sex again, but I just can't imagine it with anyone else. I can't imagine the freedom I had with this one. I wasn't self conscious in any way with him. Once I mentioned a tummy tuck and he cried wanting to know when he ever made me feel bad about my body. I know he is toxic and I should not look back but I can't help myself

Bitsy

July 8, 2007
1:40 pm
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jasminum sambac
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Matteo - 😀 Well, OK, not Tai Chi, maybe Aikido.

When I wrote that I had been watching karate and kung fu clips on Youtube. You don't do THIS in bed after 50:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....2GFsGQCah4

🙂 Or EVER, God willing, but I can guarantee that those calisthenics are out.

Thanks all for your comments about starting up dating again. What rang through all your comments was "Be true to yourself."

July 9, 2007
10:02 am
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matteo - I can't see my mom starting over and dating because she's not like that.

meaning, I can see her being content being alone...not needing a man.

She enjoys friendships, but is picky...she is not a social butterfly and enjoys her "alone" time.

In their marriage, mom flies solo, in that dad is an alcoholic, who comes and goes at will and does not take mom's needs into consideration.

She has gotten used to that and accepts it.

I don't think she could date and look for a "partnership", in that she doesn't "need" it. She doesn't enjoy sex anymore because of health conditions.

And she is not used to dad's companionship, so she doesn't need that either.

So, that's why I say I can't see my mom dating and starting over. Cuz she doesn't have a need for a guy.

I truly believe that the ONLY reason she is still with my dad is to honor her vows...she DOES love him...but the marriage is nothing of a traditional partnership. They co-exist and it works for them.

I don't see her "needing" to start over.

I think she would be perfectly happy alone...quite honestly.

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