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July 23, 2017

5 Online Dating Sites We Wish Existed

Filed under: dating, idea, love, people — Tags: , , , — admin @ 8:17 am

By Zahra Barnes

Given that research just suggested men with facial hair are more sexually charged, Bristlr’s emergence onto the scene is nice timing. According to Metro, Bristlr is “connecting those with beards to those who want to stroke beards.” It joins the latest crop of online dating options that are uber-specific, like Singles With Food Allergies and You Must Love Dogs Dating. Here are a few more, ahem, unique dating sites my friends and I would like to see.

One for people who are picky about good grammar. Knowing the difference between your and you’re is a low bar that a surprisingly large amount of people can’t seem to clear. Some people don’t care while others actually get discouraged by the fact that the English language is frequently being butchered in the quest for love. Wouldn’t it be nice to automatically weed out the “saw ur profile I luv readin books to” messages? Don’t get me wrong, you’d still get some side-eye-worthy come-ons. It’s just that you wouldn’t have to spend time deciphering them before you could get to the eye rolling.

One based on penis type. This idea came from a friend. “It would be nice to have one that accepts only men with nice penises so you don’t have to guess/hope/pray,” she said. I would say to take it one step further and separate them by category: straight, curved, etc. Theoretically, it’s funny. In practice I have no idea how any of it would work, especially the screening process.

One for people who have similar last meals. You enter what your ideal last meal on this earth would be and get matched up with someone who has the same one. Then, you go out for that food on your first date so you automatically start off on the right foot! This is perfect for the people who, like me, always want to split the porterhouse steak but sometimes have to forgo it because the other person isn’t into it. It’s just so tender!

One for lazy people. When creating online dating profiles, people put their best foot forward. Everyone’s quick to tell you how much they love biking 100 miles in a day, how they’re never at home on the couch on a Friday night, etc. What about the people who would be first in line (well, maybe not, since they’re kind of lethargic) to represent Sloth if we all had to choose one of the Seven Deadly Sins? Shouldn’t they be able to bypass all the people who get high on hiking and find fellow homebodies?

One where everyone is 100 percent honest. Part of the reason online dating is so hard is because people misrepresent themselves wildly. How about if everyone just had to be up front about who they were in a profile? Like, “I will always make you feel like the only guy in the world, but I also have some pretty intense jealousy issues I’m working out in therapy.” Or maybe, “All my exes would say I never tried hard enough to give them orgasms, and that won’t change until I mature in a few years. If you like me, invest in a vibrator now.” That level of truth would save everyone a lot of time.

What kind of online dating sites do you wish existed?

July 22, 2017

7 Of The Most Unhelpful Pieces Of Dating Advice I Ever Received

Filed under: advice, dating, idea, love, people — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 7:16 pm

I’ve only been off the market for two months and already, the dating world is like a bad, distant memory I want to put in a shoe box and hide under my bed.

I have to ask myself, Am I being melodramatic? Was it really that bad? When I distill it down, there was really one thing that made dating unbearable: other people’s advice.

Because dating can be overwhelming, confusing and wrought with powerful emotions, our instinct is often to seek counsel outside of ourselves. But trying to apply other people’s advice, even advice given by professionals, to our dating lives, which are extremely personal, is like walking around in a pair of shoes that don’t fit. You’re going to get blisters. The best thing anyone could have told me to do was figure out what was best for me and do that. If only I had been following my own gut, I might have had a better time dating.

Below are some of the most unhelpful pieces of dating advice I’ve ever received …

1. That you can manifest a boyfriend. Oh, please don’t get me started on all this The Secret crap. I lived in Los Angeles, which is basically a New Age, new thought Mecca, for most of my 20s. I don’t even remember half of the rituals I was instructed to do to manifest “The One.” There were lists, vision boards, books, chants, pendulum energy balancing, aura spray.

Look, I’m not knocking the power of positive thought. Being in a good place with yourself attracts other people to you. I’m not disputing that. But you cannot materialize a person. I wish I never tried. Every stupid list I made left me wondering, “What am I doing wrong?” I was doing nothing wrong. Actually, I was. I wasn’t going on any dates! I was casting spells and massaging my aura and waiting for dudes to drop out of the clouds instead oftrying to meet anyone.

2. The concept of “volume dating.” This idea of dating lots of guys at once was pushed on me multiple times throughout my dating career. And each time, I tried it thinking I would feel differently. These were the lowest points in my dating life. Why? Because it’s not for me!

I found it to be counterintuitive to the idea of focusing on who I liked best. Instead, I was flooded with anxiety, confused about how I felt, and constantly worried about hurting someone’s feelings. Instead of being honest with myself, I let myself suffer through it. If I find myself single again, I refuse to date more than one person at once. Refuse.

3. Waiting 90 days to have sex. There was this therapist who told me to wait at least 90 days before taking my clothes off with a guy. Although I did not follow this advice, after it was given to me, I had this little voice in the back of my mind after every breakup that would tell me that I ruined everything by giving it up too soon. When I really thought about it, I decided that this particular piece of dating advice is based on the antiquated idea that all women are good for is sex and the longer you withhold sex, the more power you have.

First of all, I find this slut shaming for obvious reasons. Second of all, it’s not true!! Withholding anything is not the way to gain power. True power comes from giving freely and being true to yourself. And sometimes your self wants to have sex. Lots of times, actually.

4. The whole He’s Not That Into You revolution. If I could go back in time and un-publish that book, I would. I HATE it. Not because there isn’t a small kernel of truth in it, but because it puts men in the drivers’ seat of dating. In reality, it doesn’t matter if he’s not that into you. It matters how into him you are. And if you are equally into each other. The book should have been called We’re Not That Into Each Other, So We Should Break Up.No one should settle for someone who doesn’t like them that much. If you are, there’s a self-esteem issue which needs to be addressed. So it’s not really about dating, it’s about self-esteem. I move that we all burn that book.

5. Going out with other people to get over a breakup. Someone told me to, so I tried it. I sat on many a date too heartbroken to eat my pasta. And all it did was make me miss my exes more. All it did was make me go home and eat ice cream and cry and feel worse about my life and my future. New people don’t help you forget about old ones. I wish someone told me just to allow myself to be sad for a while and to wait to go on dates until my heart was on the mend.

6. Waiting for guys to make all the moves. There’s this pervasive idea that assertive women turn men off. I think this comes from that stupid-ass book, The Rules. (We should burn that one, too!) To all those people who told me to sit back and wait for him to call, to wait for him to ask me out, to wait for him to make the first move, I say FUCK OFF!

I did a lot of waiting. Too much waiting. An annoying amount of waiting. Here’s the true thing: the right guy will be flattered when you ask him out. He’ll feel lucky if you plant one on him. He’ll blush when he gets your text message. Women have just as much right to have agency when it comes to dating. So own your agency, ladies. And if he’s turned off by you, it’s better that you weren’t waiting around to find out. You can move on sooner!

7. The idea of approaching your dating life like a business. A dating coach who shall remain unnamed advised me to approach my love life the way I would a financial portfolio. This involved me getting a professional photo shoot for my online dating profile and posting less pictures of me and my friends on Facebook so I would seem like “serious marriage material.” Oh, she also had the nerve to tell me I photograph “shiny” and I should straighten my hair. WTF?

Her entire strategy was built around making women feel like love is scarce and you can only give yourself a fighting chance at it by projecting the most perfect image of yourself (with her help,which will cost you a fortune).

To her, I would like to say, “Love is abundant in this world and romantic love is not the only kind that exists.” As much as we’d like to think there is some formula for romantic love, there isn’t. Sorry. That’s the truth. There’s no business plan, no algorithm, no diversified portfolio that will increase your odds. BOOM! Take that, evil dating coach!

Now that I’ve vented about all of mine, please share the most unhelpful pieces of dating advice you’ve ever received in the comments.

July 16, 2017

The Art of Dating

Filed under: date, dating, experience, life, love, practice, reflection, skills — Tags: , , , , , , , — admin @ 11:18 pm

Ah, the timeless art of dating. Not to be confused with the timeless art of seduction.

As a dating coach, I encourage women to perfect the art of dating through practice. My goal is not for them to become the perfect date who always gets a follow-up call for a second outing, because perfection in life is both undesirable and, of course, impossible (although this woman comes close to perfection). Rather, I want clients to perfect the art by seeing every date as a pleasurable experience, solely because every date is just that — an experience – not a two-way audition for the next step in life: marriage and babies. Changing your attitude when it comes to dating can only be accomplished through practice.

Essentially, I am asking people to undergo a mindshift when it comes to dating. This mindshift can be broken down into two parts: action and reflection.

Action

I encourage clients and women in general to date a lot, and to rarely say no to new suitors and new opportunities. By going on a lot of dates, you are actively practicing your dating skills. Use every date as an opportunity to practice your conversation skills, your ability to open up to others and to get them to open up to you, your listening skills, your ability to articulate your goals in life and who you’re looking for, your compassion for others, and whatever else you deem important. Practice being patient and friendly and warm and open and generous. Sure, maybe there’s no love connection, and maybe you know this within five minutes of meeting a date, but maybe instead of finding love you make a new professional contact, or just maybe you become platonic friends and your date invites you to a party where you end up meeting someone great.

By looking at dating through this lens you don’t go into every dating experience with an extremist attitude — that every date is a burden and exhausting or that, fingers crossed, this date is going to be The One. The former attitude is an energy sap and the latter creates unrealistic expectations.

Reflection

By being action-oriented in the dating world, you are acting your way into thinking about your love life. You’re not analyzing from your couch; you’re not wishing things were different while drowning your sorrows in a pint of Ben and Jerry’s. You’re taking control. Every date you go on is an opportunity to engage in self-reflection and to figure out who is compatible, who is not, and what values are really important to you. You’ll make mistakes and wrong turns along the way. That’s okay. As the tagline for my dating coaching business goes: In the dating world, failure is your greatest asset. Of course, a cycle of failure that you can’t seem to extricate yourself from is problematic, which is why consistent reflection is so important in the first place, so you can work to correct the thoughts, behaviors, and actions that aren’t getting you where you want to be. Remember: If you do what you’ve always done, you’re going to get what you’ve always gotten. Learn from every experience and move away from the things that don’t feel good and right to you and closer to the ones that do.

July 7, 2017

It’s Never Too Late To Find The Man Or Woman Of Your Dreams

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — admin @ 3:17 pm

By Maryalene LaPonsie

It started with a hello and a smile. It ended with a wedding that included guests from two continents.

That’s the story of Bruce and Bernadetta Bateman, who found love at the Lakewood Village retirement community in Melbourne, Florida, and got married at ages 76 and 73, respectively. Their story is only one example of how older Americans are pursuing romance and finding the perfect partner, regardless of their age.

According to AARP, 45 percent of Americans older than age 65 are divorced, separated or widowed. Meanwhile, a 2013 Pew Research Center study found that 6 percent of Americans between ages 55 and 64 had used an online dating website or app. That may not sound like much until you consider that only 10 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds reported using those sites.

However, as the Bateman story demonstrates, older Americans don’t necessarily have to resort to high-tech means to find their next soul mate.

Finding Love Next Door

Bruce didn’t have to go far to find his wife. While gardening one day, Bernadetta walked by and said hello. Bruce recalls being instantly smitten – although his future wife insists she had no intentions other than showing neighborly friendliness.

It wasn’t until Bernadetta lost a beloved pet and received a condolence note from Bruce that she began to feel otherwise.

Spending the holidays together led to a January proposal and a March 2012 wedding attended by family and friends from as far away as Bernadetta’s native Netherlands. When asked whether they were concerned about moving too fast, Bruce is quick to point out their previous marriages and life experiences meant they knew they were a match.

“With all that background and experience, we knew what we needed,” he says. “We absolutely knew it was the right thing to do.”

Where to Meet People After Age 50

Not everyone will find their future spouse living a few houses down the street. But fear not. Relationship experts say older Americans have several options when it comes to meeting new people.

“Instead of focusing on where can I meet guys or where can I meet girls, think about where can I meet friends,” says Christina Pesoli, a family law attorney in Austin, Texas and author of “Break Free from the Divortex.” She says those settings, from book clubs to church groups, can be great places to meet potential dates with similar interests.

Pepper Schwartz, a love and relationship expert for AARP, says travel and hobby groups and community classes are also places where older Americans can mingle. She adds that online dating shouldn’t be overlooked either.

“I’m a big fan of online dating because it has so many people to offer to you,” Schwartz says.

Some dating sites, such as those run by AARP and OurTime, cater specifically to singles older than age 50. However, big sites like eHarmony and Match have plenty of older users as well. Schwartz notes older Americans may find that boutique sites that cater to specific religious groups or personal interests may provide the best matches.

Seniors shouldn’t limit themselves to only dating people of the same age, Pesoli says. It’s an issue she sees with women in particular; they tend to date people they think they should date rather than whom they want to date. “You get to have your own rules and preferences,” Pesoli says.

Common Mistakes on the Senior Dating Scene

“You’d be surprised how much people talk about health on a first date,” says Schwartz, adding that dropping a “data dump on hello” is a major senior dating mistake. “I’ve heard older daters make it sound like a job interview or a health check.”

From rattling off physical ailments to discussing former relationships, seniors may be prone to oversharing on a first date. Others may have been out of the dating scene for so long that they’ve developed off-putting habits. Seniors may have to relearn how to interact on dates, says Schwartz, who finds it touching to see many adult children step up to coach their parents through the process.

For those who don’t have that sort of support, the key to a successful first date may lie in remembering to steer the conversation away from events of long ago. “When you’re going out on your first date, make it about your future and not your past,” Pesoli suggests.

Dating too quickly after a divorce can be another mistake, and one that could cause friction within families. “It makes adult children crazy when mom or dad rush into a new relationship,” says Bob Boyd, a partner with the Atlanta law firm Boyd Collar Nolen & Tuggle, and past president of the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

Taking it slowly can help ease concerns from adult children who may be worried about their parent’s emotional and financial stability. To that second point, Boyd says seniors have to think carefully about money matters if they are considering a second marriage, particularly after a divorce that may have already divided retirement assets and income.

“You cannot be afraid to have the hard discussion about having a prenuptial agreement,” he says. For those who aren’t sure whether it’s worth it to date again, Bruce Bateman encourages his peers to at least give it a try. “Don’t be stuffy and stay at home. Take a few chances,” he says. “Love is wonderful the second time around.”

June 27, 2017

Senior Speed Dating Courts Love at Any Age

Filed under: center, dating, love, speed, woman — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 12:17 pm

By Kristen Polizzi

One man wrings his hands. The woman seated across from him twists her wedding band.

Wanda Moore looks around a dark-wood-walled reception room in McCrite Plaza at Briarcliff, a retirement community in Kansas City, North.

“Do I look too eager?” she asks.

Moore, a former flight attendant, was among 18 seniors mingling in six-minute sessions last month at Shepherd’s Center Central’s first speed dating event.

The event, for those 55 and older, comes amid a nationwide dating trend meant to empower older adults to find love and companionship.

Sandra Aust, director of the Coming of Age initiative for Shepherd’s Center Central, said it’s prime time for opportunities like this in Kansas City.

The metro’s population of adults aged 65 and older, according to Mid-America Regional Council, is expected to nearly double over the next 20 years.

Local numbers echo national estimates: In 2030, more than 20 percent of U.S. residents are projected to be 65 and older. And by 2050, baby boomers, who are largely responsible for the growth in the older population, will be over the age of 85.

“These are the generations who grew up getting together and socializing in church, at school, at work,” Aust said. “Now their opportunities are limited, but the need for friendship, companionship and connection, that doesn’t change.”

That’s the message of director Steven Loring’s 2014 film, “The Age of Love,” which follows 30 speed-dating seniors in Rochester, N.Y. The film has been screened across the country and has inspired a conversation about love in later life.

Loring began work on the film in 2011 shortly after his father died. That left Loring’s mother a widow at 70.

“My mom was thrown into this single life,” Loring said in a telephone interview. “She was without an emotionally intimate partner and wondering who she would be in the future.”

In the same year, his 78-year-old uncle, who had never been on a date, took up with a woman two years older. Loring said that’s when his uncle started locking the bedroom door.

Loring was struck by his uncle’s new romance, but more so by media treatment of an aging generation.

“Everything I saw forwarded the stereotype,” he said. “That everyone over 60 has lost the opportunity for love, that they’re somehow beyond that or embarrassed about it.”

But through filming, Loring found just the opposite. The men and women he followed — ranging in age from 70 to 90 — were open to sharing their experiences.

Many had spent their lives in loving, intimate relationships with a partner who had passed away.

Carol Green, who attended the Kansas City event, said speed dating wasn’t about finding another spouse, but someone to connect with, to share a meal with, to talk to about loss.

Pam Finley, who traveled to the event from Edgerton in Johnson County, has never been married. Still, she said her expectations for a relationship have changed with age.

“As I get older, I know myself better,” Finley said. “I know where home is. I probably won’t pick up and follow someone like I might have done in my 20s.”

But at 60, Finley feels young. And a sense of humor is high on her list.

Across the room, Dan Maclean, 82, obliges.

Laughing and leaning close, he calls the room “a geriatric meat market.”

Maclean jokes that he’s in high demand. There was a waiting list of women for this event.

“Men at that age have depended on social connections through their partners,” Loring said. “They need to be reassured that it’s fun to do something so emotionally revealing.”

Charlie Burton, who points to a staff member at Shepherd’s Center as his reason for coming, said he’s glad he came.

Aust is already working on a way to draw more men to the next speed dating event: Every woman who registers will have to recruit a male friend or relative.

She doesn’t think attendance will be an issue.

“No one has said anything other than ‘I had so much fun,’” Aust said.

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