Post Post Pubescent Dating

‘The Dating Game’

By Tony DeLorger © 2010

Divorced, dressed up and nowhere to go; the lament of 40 plus mums and dads everywhere, after the bitter dust settles on their previous lives. Single parenthood is a daunting lifestyle, but even more daunting that frightening step to rejoin the dating scene and perhaps start the whole cycle again.

When you’re young relationships just happen, a product of a more active social life and boundless vigour that only youth can afford. In middle age, and with a far more sedentary lifestyle, it’s incredible difficult to meet eligible prospective partners. Firstly, our responsibilities increase, with mortgages, family, children and sometimes grandchildren to consider. Still in the most important and productive earning stage of life, our work responsibilities and related stresses are considerable. Yet we are alone and have to deal with all this without a partner. So then, with limited time, under constant stress and with an innate biological drive we decide that we should once again find our other half.

I must tell you that this is not about sex. With everything that’s happened, the stress of doing life alone and single parenting, one could imagine looking down one morning to find our male appendage turned black and fallen off from lack of use. Instead, we are driven by loneliness, a need for adult conversation and the intimacy of sharing our darkest thoughts with a member of the opposite sex. Men and women are certainly from different planets, but it is that difference that allows us to fit so perfectly together, to balance our views and negotiate our actions with sensible compromise.

So, where do we go to find this new better half? We are way beyond clubs, discos and raves and feel less than whole in the confidence stakes. So, with complete anonymity and a brave kind of optimism, we turn the computer on and hesitantly sign up to one of those dreaded dating sites. A new world opens before our eyes, one that feels a mixture of blind hope and abject fear, with the slight scent of desperation. Someone said to me recently that you have to meet about seventeen people before you find someone suitable. After a few experiences one begins to understand why.

People lie, fabricate and deceive on every level, not everyone mind you, but a lot. Posted photographs are years old, and figures many pounds heavier in reality. Age is anyone’s guess, and I’ve personally met 40-year olds that look like my Grandma. I just can’t figure it out. Perhaps my expectations were too high, but I just haven’t the stomach. Even if you find someone who looks fine, the baggage and associated problems that people have make you want to run for the hills. This quest is not for the faint-hearted and now in my fifties, I’m not sure I have it in me.

Finding a perfect match is like finding a particular grain of sand on a beach, damned near impossible. I guess the ability to match with someone else is firstly about like thinking, then compatible personalities but most importantly to be able to compromise and accept each other for who you are. All I can say is that if you want to find someone, think about what you want, be positive and let the universe bring you together. It sure beats the dating game. I lament.

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