The Digital Self

Exploring the complications, conveniences, and conflicts that technology presents in personal and professional relationships.

Is Online Dating Reducing Your Chances of Finding Mr. Right?

People often come to therapy to work through relationship issues. These issues range from improving one's relationship to figuring out why the right relationship has not come their way. This blog post focuses on heterosexual women between the ages of 35-45. In the last few years I have noticed a distinct pattern with many of the women in my practice that are interested in finding Mr. Read More

How about men?

It's a good thing you start out by stating that this post deals specifically with middle-aged heterosexual women. Because there's a corollary that it appears someone should do research on and write about. And that would be: If you are a heterosexual, decent, middle-aged man and are looking for a loving, caring, meaningful relationship, on-line dating is a great place to meet Ms. Right. (By "decent," I mean you have never been unfaithful or abusive, or engaged in any of the other negative male behaviors commonly discussed here.)

As a heterosexual, decent, middle-aged man who, unfortunately, sees divorce a distinct possibility in his future, I find myself increasingly thinking about the on-line dating world. (No, I have never tried it, only heard about it from divorced friends. To try it would require that I remove the adjective "decent" from my self-description.)

Nothing would make me happier than to repair my marriage and wake up next to a wife who loves me and makes me feel emotionally secure. But the more I (we) try and fail to make that happen, the more I think, why not just end this marriage and start meeting all those women who are, as you describe, "Educated, Funny, Interesting ... ."

I'll ask my therapist about this.

Well, I've got bad news for

Well, I've got bad news for you. There were a couple of traits left off the author's list for those women:

--Arrogance.
--Unrealistic expectations.

But, there are a few good women. They are very hard to find.

Another problem, as you, a middle aged man will face, is the fact that many middle aged women say they are done playing around and now just want someone to "cuddle with"

Lucky you.

In other words: "I've been passed around like a cigarette and now I want you to provide me company for nothing in return."

It's pretty depressing out there.

the age game

Personally, I don't understand why a self-confident 30-something woman would feel humiliated if she was dating a 39 year old man who later changed his preference to women in the 20-something age bracket (as in the example in the article). This guy is the fool, not her! In my 20s, I was never interested in dating a 39 year old - I wanted to date men my age or 3-4 years older. Why do some middle aged and older men think young women would prefer them to a young man?! Makes no sense.

Ladies, don't give up. I was 40 when I met my fiance on an online site. I'm now 43 and couldn't be happier. He's two years older than I am. Keep the faith, you CAN find a happy relationship through an online site, although I certainly agree with the author that exploring other ways to meet a man who wants to be in a serious relationship is a good thing.

It is wonderful to hear

It is wonderful to hear positive outcomes. Thank-you so much for sharing.

Tamara Hicks

You asked: "Why do some

You asked: "Why do some middle aged and older men think young women would prefer them to a young man?"

Because they do -- ask them.

Its a simple fact of life. Maybe its just our turn?

We men get rejected for all kinds of superficial things when young, then when we get some grey at the temples, younger women are attracted...

...I'm not going to argue with them.

Dating safety!

Great article, you might want to also google bConcerned.com, it offers a free online dating safety tool and offers very good dating safety tips! They monitor your safe arrival home from after a date, and if you don't confirm your safe return they notify your alert conatct person to verify your safety!

Thanks for the heads the info

Thanks for the heads the info on bConcerned.com. What a great idea. I will absolutely pass on this resource.

Tamara Hicks

I don't buy it.

I don't see these women as victims. I believe their expectations may be too high (they may also reek of desperation). In the same way that you listed all their "fabulous" qualities, those women are looking for perfect men (I'll never understand this phenomenon - the idea that we all deserve the best of everything when most of us are pretty average).

A few years back when I was 39, I too was doing the on-line dating thing. I wasn't doing the typical sites; rather I was doing more of the "adult friend finder" sites. And unlike the women you reference, my experience was very positive and good for my ego (I never even posted a picture). What I found on these sites was that people were much more likely to be honest about themselves (and not presenting themselves as perfect or looking for perfect partners). Additionally, men out-number women on these sites, so we women have a huge advantage. To be fair, some simply wanted no-strings attached sex (which isn't a bad thing and can be fun), but others wanted relationships. The vast majority of these men were highly educated and professional and not at all creepy (they just weren't ashamed that they liked sex). I made many close friends and even found a relationship. I have several friends (women who are over-weight and/or average looking) who've also had luck on these "less than reputable sites." I've always been lucky going the non-conventional route.

Thank-you for taking time to

Thank-you for taking time to make an insightful comment. I enjoyed hearing about your positive experience on "adult friend finder" sites and will certainly pass on this information. I know many women that would love to not post a picture, have a positive experience and come through it with their ego intact.

Again, thanks for sharing.

Tamara Hicks

Adultfriendfinder

Met my husband on Match thought he was my ONE left friends and family to move to be married and with him to find out I married the town Whore. He continued to date ( have sex with anyone ) the whole time we are married no Im not outta shape im a size 4 and a Double D and very pretty but Im not 32 different women which in the 3 years we were married he needed to have sex with, these sites are purely a sex online site, no real realtionships can develop all he did was take my money, hurt my kids and destroy my faith in men so im never trust a man u meet on line.com If hes from Ashland Ky, his a liar, drunk and abuser, hope u like how your own bllod tastes because if you ever say anything about him screwing around u will be hit,, he loves to hit women, just as his dad did till he killed his wife .

Are there any women left that

Are there any women left that aren't disgustingly amoral ?

I give up trying to find a good woman.

"There are several reasons

"There are several reasons for the negative feelings around online dating. First of all, many women are not assured that what you see is what you get. It is not entirely uncommon to find out that the man you have been emailing (or even dating) is living with his girlfriend or worse, married."

Agreed, online dating can make it easy to lie as you have your computer screen to hide behind, but whats to say that the guy you meet in a bar or in your local coffee shop isn't lying about his age or relationship status. If someone wants to lie they will. At the end of the day it's all about trust and following your gut instint whether that be online or in the 'real world'.

Online dating

I am a female, 51, in good health and do not look my age. I have tried online dating and it seems to be a big game. When you do find someone you are interested in they drop out by the second email or keep talking superficially and it does not go anywhere. I am sure there are a lot of decent men and women dating online but it is not as easy as it sounds. You will probably have to wade through a lot of bad apples to find the good one. It does take time and energy but if you do find the right one I am sure it is worth it!

Please, help me to find the best dating sites.

Hi nto All
Can you help me to find actual now dating sites: mens, womens, teens.
With best regards

The best popular dating portal.

Hi.
Please, give me some links on the popular dating sites.
Need some links on dating catalog.
Thx.
immillkig

The best popular dating portal.

Hi.
Please, give me some links on the popular dating sites.
Need some links on dating catalog.
Thx.
immillkig

Abusive girlfriend.

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The real issue...

... is unreal expectations.

The whole thing reeks of entitlement. A generation raised on disney movies and corporate propaganda. It reads like someone who believes everything they saw on TV was true.

The real issue is that people don't have any genuine values anymore, the whole point of principles were to tame peoples uncontrollable and unstable emotions. Since our ancestors know how they distort peoples perceptions of the world.

I've watched perfectly wonderful relationships blow up because one or the other partner was having normal ups an downs and the other just flaked out.

Truth is modern men and women are immature beyond compare. My own parents have been married for decades and they are further ahead economically then most people around them because they knew not to let their emotions rule them. They will be able to have a wonderful retirement because they stuck together and took on the world together.

Modern men and women - have no guts! They are living in a fantasy world that doesn't exist.

The problem is that most

The problem is that most people have unrealistic expectations. Everybody is chasing Mr. Right or Ms. Right, when most people are average. A man's greatest asset is his social status, while a woman's greatest asset are her looks and youth. Everything else follows. Assess yourself under this criteria (exceptions exist, but they are outliers). Be realistic of what you can get; otherwise, you will just be used and dumped, like a used condom, by Mr. or Ms. Right; they think they are too good for you. We should value personality more than looks or social status, but this is idealistic rather than realistic, and the world is hard to change, but you can start with yourself.

I am a single woman in her

I am a single woman in her mid-30s. I look younger. I get alot of young dudes on OKC messaging me. I don't need CougarLife. I really don't need CougarLife. I changed my age on OKC to 27 and the younger dudes stopped messaging me. It was so stupid. I got the same number of views. They skewed younger.

Running clubs are mostly women and the odd dude. I'd like to see an article that would give better suggestions where to go offline to find dates. Hiking clubs are also mainly female too. I figure I am going to hit the weight room or go salsa dancing.

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Tamara J. Hicks, Psy.D., is co-founder of Potrero Hill Psychotherapy in San Francisco and provides psychotherapy to adults, children, couples, and families.

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