Dating After a Divorce Over 50 (Video)

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Are you ready to start dating? Many Divorced Over 50’s resume dating at some point, though others do not — it’s a personal choice, and you should never feel pressured to date if you don’t want to.

Getting back into dating in your 50’s (or more) can seem daunting. So much has changed. And then, with the natural negativity so many feel after a Divorce, the thought may seem even more scary.

Take a look at the video below, which was produced by our friends at 2ndact.tv.  As you’ll see, it features three women who’ve gotten Divorced after long term marriages discussing dating with a male therapist. It covers topics like how to get started; how honest to be; not ignoring red flags; and having the strength to say “this isn’t working.”

When it was shot three years ago, all of the women expressed concerns and trepidation about dating; make sure you watch all the way to the end to see just how things turned out…

 

Male Sexuality Over 50 — Somewhat Complicated, Too

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Last post was about female sexuality Over 50; now it’s the guys’ turn. And just as the post regarding women contained information relevant to men, this one should be of interest to the ladies, too.

So let’s start with a few things we know about male sexuality when it comes to us Boomers: Impotence is to be expected, libido diminishes, and sex can actually be dangerous. Right?

No. Wrong! Those are myths, and none of them are true.

This piece from MaleHealthCenter. com says that research shows nearly all men (and the majority of women) retain an interest in sex between the ages of 50 and 80. And that even if response isn’t what it once was, simply recognizing it takes longer to get aroused is often the “cure” for erectile dysfunction. In other words, before seeking a medical solution, try simple communication with your partner, letting her know that you need a lot of foreplay, too.

The article says that great sex is the result of knowing, understanding, and caring for your partner. It offers a few recommendations for creating the solid bond that leads to fulfilling sex, including:

  • Be generous with your compliments, letting her know how attractive she is
  • Try alternatives to penetration, as there’s plenty of pleasure to be had other than intercourse
  • Communicate what you like, and ask her what works for her
  • Avoid monotony by trying new locations and times of the day

Aimed at males Over 50, our friends at AARP offer “Six Ways to Make Lovemaking Great.” Its main take-away is that men don’t give their partners an orgasm; rather, it’s the man’s role to create the right context that allows the woman to have one (or more). And to help create those comfortable conditions, men should…

  • Recognize most women require more than intercourse to climax
  • Treat her entire body as an erogenous zone, not just a few specific areas
  • Slow down, spending lots of time on the warm-up (which, as mentioned above, is important for men, too)
  • Have lubricant available
  • Mix it up and try something new (also mentioned above)
  • Be open to including a vibrator in the love-making if the woman wants it

And to close this out, the online dating site Zoosk.com offers “What 50 Year Old Men Want in Bed.”  Some of the suggestions aimed at women are similar to previous advise for men (be communicative, be spontaneous, take your time), but a few others haven’t been touched on before.

Female Sexuality Over 50 – It Can Be Complicated

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As we all know, human sexuality can be complicated. Then, when you’re Over 50, it can get additionally complicated. And for women Over 50, due to both societal factors and their own physiology, it can become more complicated still.

Though plenty of mature Divorced women are finding their sexuality reignited (see our January post “Sex and the Single Woman Over 50”), that isn’t always the case. Both the “mind” and the “body” issues that come into play Over 50 can have a negative effect. 

The Big Tell: I’m Getting Divorced

Having to tell your family and friends you’re getting Divorced can be a surprisingly difficult part of the process. At a really awful time in your life, when you’re already dealing with all the turmoil and fear and uncertainty, one of the last things you may want is to run into a friend at Starbucks who asks, “So what’s new?”

Author Wendy Paris, writing for Psychology Today’s website, believes that the act of telling others about your split is actually a great opportunity. She explains that marriages exist within communities, and members of those communities can be confused by a Divorce. So the way you break the news helps the community see how you’re viewing it, and lets them know what to expect.

The key to handling it well is, like so many things in life, preparation. Paris suggests developing an “elevator speech,” a term from the business/networking world, which means a quick, organized, presentation — but instead of pitching yourself or your product, you’re describing your Divorce. And she offers some steps  to creating a good one, among them:

  • Define the Divorce. Position your split in a way that gives you more strength, not less. If it’s amicable, say so. If it’s not, say you’re working toward amicability. Avoid, or at least limit, criticisms of your ex. This is about you. Accentuate the positive.
  •  Issue a call to action. Keep in mind that most people will be thinking “How does this affect me?” So, depending on who they are, give them a task. From a good friend, you may ask for support. From an acquaintance, perhaps a set-up when you’re ready to date again. This call to action turns the conversation from “why” to “what’s next.”
  • Always be closing. Be ready to shift topics once you’ve finished saying what you want.

How to Tell Your Spouse It’s Over

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If you’re Di-Curious, have you thought about how you’ll tell your husband or wife you want out, if in fact you decide to Divorce?

And for those who’ve already been through it, how’d you handle the situation, whether you were the giver or receiver of the news? Did that initial statement/conversation get your process off to a reasonable start, or did it dial up the anger and set a negative tone that lasted the entire process? 

Think Positive to Fight Divorce Shame

Did you feel shame about getting Divorced?

Did you blame yourself and/or your ex, wallowing in negativity that builds upon itself, feeling depressed, angry, and resentful?

Or, did you accept that you may have made some bad choices, but you’re a good person, who will move forward with a  positive mindset? 

Casual Sex: Here Are Some Do’s and Don’ts

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Most Divorced Over 50’s report that their sex life during marriage, particularly toward the end of it, was extremely lacking. In fact, several of the interviewees for Gray Divorce Stories acknowledged going years without having any sex as their marriages fell apart.

Then, when DO50’s are first out of their marriage, the focus is just trying to keep their head above water while battling through the Survive Phase — sex may be among the furthest things from their minds. As life gets better, however, and they move into Revive, an interest in sex may come back. The problem, though, is that many people aren’t ready to get into a committed relationship that will lead to sex. So what to do?

How about casual sex?

What’s on Your Post Divorce Bucket List?

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Did you make a Bucket List after your Divorce?

That probably wasn’t a priority during the early, Survive Phase of your process. But as you began (or will begin) to Revive, creating a Bucket List could be an important, and valuable, exercise. Just the act of looking forward to a brighter future, and setting some goals within that future, could help you Thrive sooner. Even if you eventually only check off a few of the goals, you’ll still be so much better off.

To help “prime the pump” (a phrase Donald Trump coined just last week) for creating your list, here are some rundowns from a couple other folks who’ve gone through a Divorce.

Writing for Lifehack.org, Jillian Reese offers what I’d call a “starter list,” including such standards as: go skydiving, get a tattoo, and learn to play the guitar. Not particularly scintillating, but a decent collection to get you thinking.

Adriana Velez, writing on CafeMom, offers a more specific, and more exciting, list of 50 Things To Do When Your Marriage Ends. Kicking it off with “Buy a really good vibrator,” Velez includes: become a handyman,  watch the movie “Heartburn,” and smoke a hookah. She also makes some really solid suggestions that can aid in Divorce recovery, including several that have been offered on this site in other posts. Among the notable:

  • Learn to say yes (to new things)
  • Learn to say no (which will establish limits and help keep you from being overwhelmed)
  • Learn to forgive
  • Date outside your type
  • Get a grip on your finances
  • Meditate

So that’s a total of 70 ideas — some serious, some frivolous — to help you start making your own post divorce bucket list. What’s on yours? Please share in the comments below…

 

Your Divorce Attorney: What to Look For, How to Manage

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For many of us, our Divorce Over 50 is the first time we’ve ever had to deal with an attorney.  Yep, just one more thing about it that really sucks.

So at a terrible time in your life, with all sorts of stress and emotion and pressure, you have to navigate that new, confusing, scary, and expensive world of Divorce lawyers.

How do you even go about trying to find an attorney? The first step is to ask for help. Have any of your friends, family, or co-workers gone through a Divorce? Would they recommend their attorney? Might they recommend the opposing attorney? You might also consider seeking referrals from other professionals you use, like your accountant or insurance agent. They’re often in networking groups with attorneys, and may have a sense of who you should at least interview.

Here’s an article from DivorceNet which addresses interviewing a Divorce lawyer. Asking these questions will  help you get a sense of the attorney’s qualifications, strategy, philosophy, and a projection of the costs you’ll face. In addition to using DivorceNet’s guide as a cheat-sheet for questioning potential attorneys, the site will also help you find qualified lawyers in your area (that’s not an endorsement, just provided informationally).

Then, once you’ve hired an attorney, it’s important to continue monitoring his or her performance to ensure it’s what you want. In this blog post, family law attorney Cheryl Stein says she’s often taken over cases for  clients who had come to distrust their previous lawyer. Many times, these clients felt their attorney was more interested in their relationship with the opposing counsel than with them.

Stein says clients need to insist on transparency with their attorney, meaning open, clear, and honest communications. Clients should be getting regular updates on the progress of their case, and be copied on all written communications.