Where Do I Meet Single Men If I’m In My 40s?

I am 44 years old and entering the dating scene again for the first time in 25 years. Where do you go to meet someone at my age? I am not doing the online singles sites…that is just scary to me. I don’t go to church. I am new in town, with a few happily married friends.I have four grown who are trying to set me up (I love them, but what a nightmare!!). What do single people do at 40 and over? So much of my time was taken up with caring for someone else that now I just don’t know how to fill that time. Any suggestions?

Loriann

Thanks for highlighting an important principle for women over 40 seeking love:

You will not find it unless you do something differently.

You said it yourself. You’re new in town. Your friends are married. You don’t go to church. You won’t date online because it’s scary.

It’s about attracting men, understanding men, and making them want to stick around forever and ever. That’s what I do for my clients every single day.

What do you expect me to tell you? No, really. What?

Every day I get emails from women who want one-on-one dating coaching but don’t want to try online dating. I tell each one the same exact thing:

“If you’re dating a few men right now and can guarantee me that you’ll have at least one date a week for the duration of our time together, we can start coaching. If not, what exactly are we going to talk about for 12 weeks?”

They usually come back with a “Well, I thought, as a dating coach, you’d have some ideas on meeting men. Isn’t that what dating coaching is all about?”

No, that’s what articles in Marie Claire are all about:

“The Ten Top Spots to Meet Hot Guys!”

Here, I spared you the trouble of Googling it: The 14 Best Places to Meet Eligible Men

Without giving anything away, Loriann, here are the actual places that have been recommended by a site called AllWomensTalk: the bar, the market, online, church, the water cooler, newspapers, college, friends, the gym, restaurants, work, vacation, parks, airplanes.

Where does this leave you? Apparently, it means standing around a lot, hoping that a cute, age appropriate, interested single guy happens upon you at the bar, the market, college, the gym, restaurants, parks, and airplanes.

So if it’s not already abundantly clear, dating advice is not about WHERE to meet men. It’s about attracting men, understanding men, and making them want to stick around forever and ever. That’s what I do for my clients every single day.

As to where you meet men, yes, there’s one place that’s more effective in making introductions than 100 visits to Whole Foods and Art History class combined.

It’s called Match.com, it’s open 24 hours a day, and it costs a lot less than getting on a plane and hoping to sit next to a 45-year-old eligible bachelor.

…if you won’t go outside your comfort zone, I can pretty much assure you that nothing’s going to change.

I highly suggest you get over your fear of online dating, not because it’s perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but because it’s ubiquitous and effective in creating opportunity. Rather than dip your toe in the water and give up because you’re intimidated, I highly encourage you to check out Finding the One Online, in which I hold your hand through the entire online dating process, from getting over your fears, to choosing a website, to writing a profile, to flirting with men and so on.

You don’t have to be single if you don’t want to be, Loriann. But if you won’t go outside your comfort zone, I can pretty much assure you that nothing’s going to change.

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Comments:

  1. 121
    Cate

    In my first month on OKC, I was stalked (by the first man to whom I gave my cell phone number), sent unsolicited dick shots by four men, received so many copy/paste emails I lost count, had to block at least six men for aggressive sexual messages (after I asked them to stop sending such), and got dozens of inquiries from much-younger men who were looking for a cougar to bang. I also got many messages from men who couldn’t write or punctuate a coherent sentence and obviously did not read any of my profile (like the parts about being pagan, vegan, and NOT being interested in hookups). Got the angry, abusive kind, too (one called me a b*tch on the third message because I didn’t give him my phone and address so he could come over and #$@& me). After the initial flurry, things calmed down, and now, three months later, I’m only getting the occasional dick shot or scam message. 
    Yes, that was fun.  
    It did not give me a favorable opinion of online dating.  

  2. 122
    Vera

    Mmm, so interesting. Have to say, I did step out of the comfort zone a number of times and do internet dating. Found it incredibly demoralising and disappointing. If this is the only option for us over 40s, I’m going to be sad and lonely. The virtual dating world is a peculiar beast. If it works for you, good for you. I’ve hated it.

    1. 122.1
      guyinDC

      I’ve met a bunch of 50-year-old women through one site or the other who are all very nice. But at a guess they’ve raised the bar as they have gotten older. They’re all waiting to be dazzled, and I don’t think any of them would consider dating a mere plumber, no matter how gracious and informed about world events he was.

      They just ain’t hungry. My wife was, years ago, and that’s why today I have all this … stuff, good stuff, including a college-bound daughter who right this second keeps texting me about her damn laptop, and the cat with a bee sting or some damn thing. (I don’t care about Windows 10!)

  3. 123
    Dene

    My experience as a single guy was that most of the women I met had no trouble finding available single men if they tried. As part of my search for a lady I went to ballroom dance classes. I noticed that for every woman there were nine men. I played social tennis, same ratio applied. I went to evening classes, virtually no.women no matter what the subject.

    Maybe my experience was unique, but most men I talk to say that women are looking for George Clunie who works as a doctor and with settle for nothing less. Interestingly a survey of 2000 American women rated 80% of the men on a large dating site as “below average”. Interestingly now that I am happily married for 15 years women find me much more attractive than when I was single.

    So I have taken a long time to say, go out there, don’t be too unrealistic, and have fun and you should have no problem finding lots of attractive men.

  4. 124
    Kim

    @evanmarckatz – I would not be so glib about the safety of women meeting men from dating sites. Two women in my area were murdered by men they met online.

    1. 124.1
      Karmic Equation

      Links to the news stories, please? If those women dated for weeks or months after meeting, online can’t be blamed.
       
      If they were killed on the first date, then, yeah, there may be some concerns. That said, how many women have been killed or date raped going to bars? I’m sure that happens MUCH more frequently than online murders.
       
      There are no guarantees in life, except death and taxes :)

  5. 125
    Tabitha

    Have many of the people commenting even dated much online?

    I used online line dating on and off for three years after my divorce. In that time, I dated quite a bit. Usually going out twice a week. While I met some okay people, most were broken in some way and even the ones who said they were looking for a relationship still wanted to have sex the first date.

    But okay. That’s to be expected.

    What was unacceptable was how often these men tracked me down. Even if we had never met, and all they knew was  my name and the decent sized town where I was living, they found me on Facebook and LinkedIn. They demanded that I date them and when I said I wasn’t interested the conversation turned threatening.

    The first time, I thought that this was clearly a blip.. An awful one off.. Nope. The problem is that the comfort of assumed anonymity and companionship on demand makes some of these people think they can behave in socially unacceptable ways, or they convince themselves that you are “just playing hard to get”.

    Online dating was a nightmare for me. I truly believe it’s the law of averages.. The more you date online, the greater the chance you’ll meet a dangerous person.. Sure there is a chance that you’ll meet the love of your life first.. And good luck with that. It happens all the time.. But very scary things also happen all the time.

    While you stand just as much perceived risk meeting someone at a coffee shop, most men who feel confident enough to talk with a stranger they see out also tend to have less psychological issues.

    My advice? Go out of the house in any capacity more often and to different places.. Even big cities like NYC have the same people at the same places.. Next, make eye contact and smile. You’ll be surprised how much easier (and safer) it is.

    1. 125.1
      Josie

      Yikes.  I have been put off from OLD at times, due to such occurrences.  I actually live in a fairly large city but I have a government position that makes me accessible to the public,   and a unique first name that allows me to be identified by Google.  My tactic at avoiding stalky types has been to hold off on identifying my work place ( though it’s easy for people to figure out) until meeting in person and determining if guy seems normal.  I also use an abbreviated nickname rather that my full first name, at first.  Most normal guys should understand why I am being a little cagey at first.  In fact the last man a dated from OLD two weeks ago was being text-stalked by a OLD woman, so he could relate!

    2. 125.2
      Karmic Equation

      I chose a screen name that was not anywhere close to my real name. And when I signed off on my messages, it was by my screen name.

       

      Until I agreed to meet in person, they OLD guy doesn’t know my name.

       

      How would these guys know who you are on FB or LinkedIn? Do you somehow volunteer your full name and other identifying information before agreeing to meet them in person?

    3. 125.3
      Karmic Equation

      I disagree. Something is amiss with your screening. I probably messaged with about 80 men when I was OLD. Had a lot of first dates probably like 30-40. Every guy I met was a “nice” guy. Not stalker material. There was probably about 20 or so that “felt” wrong during email or text exchanges. One I cancelled just before leaving my driveway because his text felt creepy. Way too sexual considering we had never met.

       

      And most of my dates I scheduled WITHOUT talking to any of them on the phone. I scheduled most via text only. Still managed to get non-stalker, normal people (there were a few insecure guys in there), but all fell in the “normal” range. The one outlier was a genius-nerdy guy, who owned his own company, and was somewhat socially awkward, but genuinely nice and was looking for a relationship.

       

      I had a friend who said that she had only one OL date many years ago and she was almost raped by the guy. She’s so into herself and her own issues that I don’t think she knows how to read other people, particularly men. Too much trust, and not enough skepticism, most likely.

       

      While I don’t believe online dating is any more dangerous than dating IRL, per se, I do believe that until you’ve met the man in person (always at a public place you BOTH drive to for a first date), you treat him like a friendly stranger. Until you get a good read on him. For me, that usually takes about 15 minutes of in-person convo. And this is because I really understand men and are very comfortable around them socially. Most women don’t have this kind of comfort level except with male family members. If you believe men are “complicated”, that’s a big clue in your NOT being able to read men. You will need several dates, possibly until he’s your boyfriend, before you have a good read on him, and perhaps not even then.

       

      Have fun, but be cautious during dating. Most men are NOT stalkers/serial killers. But you should not put on the blinders just because you’re attracted to him and have a connection. I’m not suggesting you go HUNTING for red flags, but don’t pooh pooh the ones you do see. Particularly not after you’ve had sex. If you see red flags after you’ve had sex with a guy, really really dissect those red flags. Because a guy is going to show you his true colors after sex. He’s usually smart enough to keep them hidden until then.

  6. 126
    jammie

    Lot of bitterness and anger in these posts, why did I read them? I’ll try to make this positive and helpful.  Anyway Somehow I’ve managed to be alone for 8 years now,  40 now, independent and in good health, good looking and athletic also, so why me?  Have I been cursed?  No,  it’s the sickness of this society that affects us all, the absurd misplaced value systems… I use to curse my luck, but now feel the luckiest ones are the ones that can learn to be alone and love themselves, most people settle for very bad relationships rather than face being alone, real change begins in one’s own mind, the way you see yourself, and if you stick with it people will start to see you the way you see yourself, people are drawn to strength like a beacon in a dark and scary world, so don’t feel too bad if you are alone, life is full of such challenges to help us grow if we want them to.

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