Online Dating Sites for Seniors?

7/25/09: I’m updating this post from two weeks ago with new information — see end of post.

I hear and read both delightful and icky stories from readers who are using online dating sites. Have you met people this way? Has it worked for you? What are the highs and lows of this new world of dating opportunity?

I hear from readers that both men and women notoriously post outdated photos on their profiles, understate age and weight, overstate financial stability and looks, and so on. At the other end of the happiness bell curve, I hear from readers who instantly (or after 3 dates) had great sex and/or found a love connection with someone they met this way.

Let’s get specific — which sites do you use, or have you used, and what have your dates been like? Which ones have a lot of single seniors to choose from? What are the pros and cons of the sites you’ve used? Inspiring stories, funny stories, worst-date stories — I welcome them all. I’d like to hear from single seniors and elders so that the information is targeted to my readers, and please name the site.

I’m also looking for a volunteer posse who would like to report back on an ongoing basis as you look for matches, email, meet, and date (or not). Email me if you’d like to be one of my confidential reporters.

Note: Please don’t comment here in order to advertise a site you operate or work for. Instead, if you’re affiliated with an online dating site, please email me with all pertinent info rather than commenting here. I promise I’ll respond and look into what your site offers.

Update: “Granny B” is a 69-year-old widow “looking for one last Love.” she writes a funny and informative blog titled GrannyBoogies on the highway of life chronicling her adventures in online dating. Although at first she didn’t identify the sites she’s using, instead giving them pet names like “Silvermatch” and “fishyfishy,” her July 24 post — “Granny’s adventures in cyber date land or somewhere out there…” — tells which six online dating sites she has used: e-harmony, Senior Match, Plenty of Fish, Senior Friend Finder, BBW and Cupid. She shares wisdom and caveats, such as this:

Beware of guys who are “legally separated” and don’t post a photo of themselves. Watch out for profile names (you usually don’t use your real name for your profile, I am Granny Boogies, Granny B and NVHeart on my profiles). If you find a profile name like 694U or Buttlover, you might want to take a pass. You also might want to skip the profiles without any personal information, where the answers are “just send me a message”. Watch out for guys who take photos of themselves in their bathroom. Keep a sense of humor, remember men are both wonderful and strange. Use common sense, first dates in a public place and let someone know where you are. Yes, we are grownups so let’s use our grownup smarts.

Younger Men Seeking Older Women

I get frequent emails from men age 19-40+ who are attracted to women age 50-70+. They ask me how to meet women who might be open to a relationship with a much younger man.

I also hear from women who are surprised by — and welcome! — a younger man’s interest, and others who would rather not date someone younger than their son. An example in that last camp is “Granny B” who describes her blog this way:

GrannyBoogies on the highway of life!
The life and adventures of a senior woman looking for her last Love. Is there sex after 70? Do senior dating services work? Will Granny find her soul mate?

Granny B recently posted about being pursued by a younger man via an online dating site. I posted this comment on her blog:

On my blog about sex and aging, I hear from younger men all the time who are attracted to older women and ask how to connect with them. These men say they value the woman’s experience, self-knowledge, ease of communication in and out of bed. If you’re honestly not attracted to a man younger than your son (every man is somebody’s son!), then you’re right to send him on his way gently. But if you’re intrigued, you might get to know him!

Many of the younger men who write me describe warm memories about being introduced to sex by an older woman. Others tell me they respond to the wisdom and maturity of an older woman.

Check out my other posts on this subject.

Note to the men who want to talk about this. Yes, I welcome your comments here and your emails to me, but please — we’re talking about this subject with dignity. Do not send me your masturbatory fantasies or make me the object of them! (Please don’t be insulted by this request — I’m only saying this because it has happened a few times and that’s not what this blog is about.)

Changing society’s view of senior sex

I’m delighted that this blog has been selected by several sites for their “best of the web” list! Here are some honors we’ve received in the past few months:

Ultrasound Technician Schools lists Better Than I Ever Expected as one of the “50 Best Blogs for Your Anti-Aging Toolbelt” — and the only blog dealing with sexuality.

Seniors for Living includes us in their Top 100 Senior Blogs & Web Sites, noting, “Joan Price offers straight talk about sex after 60, aiming to prove that older women are not sexless.”

RN Central, a resource for nurses and nursing students, recommends our blog in its “Top 100 Health and Wellness Sites for Seniors.”

It warms my heart that senior sex is finally becoming accepted in society as we struggle to talk out loud about it. When my book, Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After Sixty first came out at the end of 2005, it attracted media attention, partly because it made mainstream America go “Eeeeuuu, ick!” But now, so many books and magazine articles deal with senior sex that it’s starting to be accepted as “normal,” even trendy.

We’re also listed on sex-positive sites that address all age groups. This is important, too, because we need to show young people that we sexy seniors/boomers/elders aren’t alien creatures, and that our juniors have plenty to look forward to as they age.

Thank you to the forward-thinking people who selected this blog as worthy of their “best of” listings and blog rolls — I appreciate it tremenously. And if you’ve just happened on this blog, welcome. Please stay a while and read past blog posts and comments. See the “labels” list at the right, or just sample at will.

As I like to say, we’re changing society’s view of sex and aging — one mind at a time.

Cory Silverberg: Sex blogs to vibrators

Every time I revisit Cory Silverberg’s sexuality guide at About.com, I’m impressed by the amount of dynamic, useful information. Cory’s section about senior sexuality includes links to articles he has written about aging and sexual satisfaction, HIV and the older adult, erectile dysfunction, vaginal dryness, Kegel exercises (with instructions for both men and women), and more.

Silverberg is a certified sex educator, co-founder of Come As You Are, and co-author of The Ultimate Guide to Sex and Disability. He helps Sue Johanson select the sex toys that she reviews on her TV program, Talk Sex with Sue. I can’t resist telling you that Johanson gave a splendid mini-review of my book on April 15, 2007:

Sexual activity changes as we age, but that does signal the death of pleasure. BETTER THAN I EVER EXPECTED by Joan Price is a fabulous book about sex after 60 that is aimed primarily at females. If you have been brain-washed into thinking sex is only for the young, this is the book for you. Get a copy for yourself or for your parents. They will thank you.

In other sections of Silverberg’s comprehensive sexuality site, he discusses everything from sex blogs to vibrators. Take a look!