Under Construction

This page is for single people beyond child bearing age who are exploring relationships with the opposite sex or a long term partner. They may or may not have been married before and may or may not be looking for a marriage at this time. Some of the issues are:

  • Friends vs Lovers (Platonic vs Romantic)
  • Marriage vs Companions
  • Age differences
  • Blended family issues
  • Financial issues
  • Living arrangements
  • Differences in men and women in this situation
I'm very inexperienced in this field, but fall into this group, which is why I started this page. It's mainly links to web pages I found interesting. Some may be pure BS. You've got to figure it out for yourself. I put this together in one afternoon. A complete study would take years.
I hope to add to it over the next several months.
Comments welcome to webmaster@donsnotes.com.

Many of the articles cited below are not restricted to the the target group mentioned above.

Men and Women Can't Be "Just Friends": Scientific American, 2012 says,
"Can heterosexual men and women ever be "just friends"? Few other questions have provoked debates as intense, family dinners as awkward, literature as lurid, or movies as memorable. Still, the question remains unanswered. Daily experience suggests that non-romantic friendships between males and females are not only possible, but common--men and women live, work, and play side-by-side, and generally seem to be able to avoid spontaneously sleeping together. However, the possibility remains that this apparently platonic coexistence is merely a facade, an elaborate dance covering up countless sexual impulses bubbling just beneath the surface."

Younger Women Offer You a Special Energy.
The Way of the Superior Man: A Spiritual Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Women, Work, and Sexual Desire, David Deida says,
"Just sitting next to a young woman can fill you with life force, even if you have nothing in common. ... Use the energy she has given you in your own service to others, passing the gifts of heightened aliveness and passionate heart into all of your relationships."

"Relational Maintenance in Cross-Sex Friendships Characterized by Different Types of Romantic Intent: An Exploratory Study" is a scientific study. After completing the relational maintenance section of a questionnaire, respondents checked the box that best described their cross-sex friendship. The options were as follows: (a) neither of us wants to escalate our friendship to a romantic relationship; (b) both of us want to escalate our friendship to a romantic relationship; (c) I would like to escalate our friendship to a romantic relationship, but my friend probably does not; and (d) my friend would like to escalate our friendship to a romantic relationship, but I would not.

The sex with friends section at "15 Types Of Sex You Have In Your 20s" | HuffingtonPost.com could also apply to people in their 50's. They say,
"At some point, you'll likely reach a point with a previously platonic friend in which you both agree that it's a great idea to sleep together. This is commonly referred to as friends with benefits. In most cases, it won't be. (Unless you're those uber-lucky, meant-for-each-other, "When Harry Met Sally" types.) If the sex is great, you'll either become gray area "friends with benefits," or just laugh about it a lot for years to come. If the sex is bad, you'll probably never ever speak of it again."

Google Over 50 - "Friends with benefits"

More Americans over 50 live together, but don't marry | Fox News they say, "The number of unmarried adults over 50 living together jumped from 1.2 million in 2000 to 2.75 million in 2010"

In 1992 the Presbyterian Church USA Special Committee to Study Human Sexuality published a 200-page report "Keeping Body and Soul Together: Sexuality, Spirituality, and Social Justice", which proposed relaxed views of pre-marital sex as long as there was something they called "Justice-Love". It was eventually voted down.

Age Differences:
Many older men marry younger women or sometimes the opposite.
What are some of the issues?

  • One person is retired while the other is still working so lifestyles vary
  • At some point the older person will become "elderly" with health and physical conditions which will restrict the younger one.
  • The older person may be more financially secure so there are financial issues. e.g. wills and treatment of children vs step-children.
  • Generation issues - Music, entertainment, ...
Nancy Dunnan, a writer in her forties married to a man in his sixties wrote an article entitled "In Praise of Older Men". One paragraph went as follows,
[Being married to an older man] means he has experienced enough illness and tragedy to know the importance of living each day to the fullest. By sharing his knowledge, you add a new dimension to your own life; You begin ty cherish your own friends a little bit more, you begin to reorganize your priorities, putting people and love before things and achievements, Materialism takes a backseat to life."

The gender gap in late life remarriage, where widowers are more likely than widows to remarry, has been explained by the adage "women mourn, men replace."

For older women, dating may be preferable to remarriage. Dating has been described by older women as having "someone to go out with" rather than "someone to come home to".

See The Desire to Date and Remarry Among Older Widows and Widowers - Journal of Marriage and Family 66 (November 2004), Rutgers

Online Dating:
30% of baby boomers* are single.
* The Boomer Generation defined by the Census Bureau as the high birthrate years (1946-64), but other sources use 1943-1960.

OurTime.com is a fast growing online dating site for people 50+.

See Top 5 "Myths & Truths" about Online Dating for 50-Plus Singles


30% of 50-65 year olds are single.
Women ages 65 and older outnumber men by roughly 1.5 to 1

Approximately 2% of older widows and 20% of older widowers ever remarry (Smith, Zick, & Duncan, 1991)

- Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus: A Practical Guide for Improving Communication and Getting What You Want in Your Relationships, 1992, by John Gray
- The Way of the Superior Man: A Spiritual Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Women, Work, and Sexual Desire, 1997, 2004 by David Deida
- Body and Soul: Rethinking Sexuality as Justice-Love, 2008
- Age Different Relationships: Finding Happiness with an Older or Younger Love: Jack Mumey, Cynthia Tinsley
Sex After 60-New Rules for Dating for the Next Third of Your Life, Susan Kiner

Some of these may be ment to just be funny or interesting. I've made no attempt to evaluate the qualifications of the authors to comment in this area.

last updated 9 Feb 2013