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Online Dating Is It Worth Trying?

Updated on October 6, 2019

For about a year, I've tried three different online dating sites. I'm 50+. The results have been mixed. I had some fun, a few brief positive experiences, but found it to be mostly frustrating. Beware there are a lot of online shoppers out there and they are not always the age they listed themselves as.

My best experience was a 8-week friendship of some kind that almost lead to a relationship. She also looked like the photos she posted which is not always a common occurrence.

My new friend (connection) was from South America. She was a medical doctor in her country and worked for a family medical practice here in New York. However, she wasn't truly available. I later learned she was separated (not divorced) from her pill-addicted spouse and was not a US Citizen.

It was a shame since I really liked her and we had many similar interests. I enjoyed the time I spent with her going to the movies, outdoor concerts, going on picnics, but it never got beyond the friendship stage.

It ended when her daughter arrived from Columbia to give birth. I was spared from online dating for awhile when a woman I met at a party four years ago, who I went out with twice back then, called me out of the blue to invite me to the movies.

That was a good thing at first as it lasted 3 1/2 months. We were getting to the relationship stage, but she confessed she had issues. Of course, so do I. It was the mixed messages that made my head spin. We were much more than friends. I truly liked her. She hit the Go button for sure.

After that ended, I was wounded for awhile, but shortly afterwards I got a bit more active with the online dating site I was on. I met a few people. One in particular was a smart and successful woman from out East on Long Island. I liked her personality, but simply wasn't attracted enough. Her cover photo had to be from at least 5 years ago and she was a long drive away; 30+ miles.

About three months prior to getting that call out of the blue, I had brunch with an attractive woman, my age who lived nearby. She was likeable. We went out twice and had a good time, but when she told me she still lived in her ex-husband's house, I faded away. I simply didn't feel comfortable with that situation. I could just imagine pulling into her driveway and seeing her ex husband peering out of a window.

My most frustrating experience was meeting someone in Manhattan (a 2-hour train ride for me) one Sunday who I had spoken first by phone many times before. She was originally from the Middle East. She was however a US citizen who was here over 20-years. Her face and skin was beautiful as per her photos. We clicked when we spoke by phone which was often prior to meeting.

Then we finally met. Her skin was horrible. Her photo was obviously retouched and had to be from 10 years ago.

I'll confess the photo I posted was two years old, but essentially look the same with some more grey hair. No one I met never said they wouldn't recognize me from the photo I posted. I've asked that question.

Online dating is a way to meet people. However, I would suggest you try a few of the major sites and compare your results if you could afford their monthly costs which average about $20-$30 a month. Still you need to continue to go out and except those party invitations. There's nothing better than seeing someone you're attracted to and having the chance to speak to them.

Also search and seek out those that you're attracted or like their profile (story). Especially those that live relatively close to you; say no more than 20-miles away.

The last site I was on. I decided to let expire. Two months prior to cancelling my subscription, I was getting too many message from fake members with the words; text me either on their forehead or below their photo. I ended up spending too much time blocking these phonies. I also got too many hearts or messages sent from women who were very far away; 100+ miles, many were from other states.

At that point, I had enough. It's now back to live action. I'm planning on starting a creative writing group. At a minimum, I anticipate being in the good company of other writers who love to write. Online dating has given me many stories to write about. I don't regret trying. It was a learning experience.

If I was younger say in my 30's or 40's I'd try again, but I'm not. I will push myself to go out more. Maybe join a Meetup group. Hopefully I can find a group that interests me and is nearby to where I live. And they meet on a day and time that's do-able for me.


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    • jameswritesbest profile imageAUTHOR


      6 months ago

      Thank you for posting a very informative comment. I agree with most of what you wrote and learned some... Again I appreciate you taking the time to read my article and posting a well though-out comment.

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      6 months ago

      I meant to say "niche" sites aren't likely to have as many members as the major online dating sites and apps.

      However if there is some quality, trait, or "must have" item that is very important to you it might make sense to go with a niche site which boasts of being geared towards that demographic.

      Knowing what you want should dictate where you shop.

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      6 months ago

      "Online dating is a way to meet people." - Exactly!

      I often remind people that online dating sites are (strictly) for the purpose of meeting (new) people. It is up to the individuals to have their own mate selection/screening process/must haves list.

      Essentially anyone who has ever actually met someone new from an online dating site has experienced success.

      "No one I met never said they wouldn't recognize me from the photo I posted." Just curious if you ever told anyone they did not look like their photo?

      More often than not people don't bother saying that.

      "That was a good thing at first as it lasted {3 1/2 months}. We were getting to the relationship stage." A lot of guys have a "3 date" rule. They expect to either be having sex or at least making out by then. There is usually flirtatious banter or sexual innuendo.

      It sounds like (your mate selection process) is slower or more methodical than most men when it comes to meeting a woman and converting things into a romantic or sexual relationship.

      There's nothing wrong with it. Life is a (personal) journey.

      I get the fact some people believe in establishing a friendship first but a lot of others also find it difficult to get out of the "friend zone" once they are in it. The longer two people "hang out" the more one or both of them will perceive their connection to be a {platonic one}.

      Most men would find it frustrating to invest that much time and money on dates only to be told friendship is as far things will go. use to advertise 1 in 5 weddings that take place are between couples who met online. However another way of saying the same thing is 80% of couples who marry met (offline)!

      My point is too many people view online dating as an all or nothing venture. There is nothing wrong with having an online dating profile and joining a few hobby interest groups or occasionally going out to a nice bar or hotel lounge for happy hours on a Friday.

      For the more adventurous type there is also whereby single people go on Caribbean cruises which hosts many mixers and parties for people to get to know one another.

      One should never lose site that dating is also supposed to be a fun social activity. Most "serious relationships" were (casual relationships) that "evolved" into something serious over time.

      As for distance I would say anyone who is more than an hour drive away is considered long distance. Having said that in most major cities with suburbs it's not uncommon for people to commute an hour or more to work and back home every day.

      If you believe someone is worth the effort you will make the effort.

      There are also "niche" dating sites which have specific target groups such as Our Time which is geared towards people over the age of 40/50, Christian Mingle for Christians, for Jewish people and the like. There are even sites geared towards political parties and pet ownership. Having said they are likely to have as many members as Match, eHarmony, or and definitely not as many as the "free online sites" such as OKcupid or Plenty of fish.

      Personally I would avoid using or expecting much from a "free site" unless you simply can't afford the monthly fee of a paid site. Whenever something is "free" you are going have a lot more riff raft to wade through in order to find "quality people".

      I also recommend that you research online sites before enrolling on one. and other sites have sections which review the top online dating sites. They break it down by male to female ratio, education, income level, ease of use and other parameters.

      Last but not least I would suggest using a AMEX or Visa gift card for your initial enrollment to cover three months. A lot of these online dating sites have (automatic renewals) and if you're not on top of things you may find a credit card being charged for a renewal you had not intention of making. Using a gift card and spending the remaining money on it after enrolling prevents auto renewals.

      It's not only a hassle trying to get a refund but odds are by the time you realize you were charged weeks may have gone by and their argument will be {you had access} to their website for that amount of time whether you used the site or not. At best they'll prorate you.

      Online dating sites should be seen as being just one tool in your toolbox for meeting and dating new people. Always have fun!


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