I’ve dated online for 10 years. But at 54, with most middle-aged men seeking younger women, I’d almost given up when I saw a profile photo of a man, 52, who looked relaxed and friendly.
I “liked” him, he “liked” back. We spoke for just 10 minutes when he suggested we just meet somewhere where I’d “feel comfortable.”
We’ve been seeing each other several times a week for two months. We both love tennis and play at his club. I cook for him after, so he doesn’t feel that I’m taking advantage of him.
He’s easy-going, undemanding, full of energy. And he treats me so well.
We’d both divorced years ago and have no children.
He spends the winter months in my “sunbelt” city and returns north in spring.
He works from home in either location.
But I live and work full-time here.
Am I foolish to get too involved with this man, despite that it’s going so well, when there’s a time-limit on his stay here? (He has parents and extended family “back home”).
He did mention in passing that it’d be nice if I could visit him there sometime.
Is his being here just for the winter months the same situation as a “summer romance?”
Are there red flags that I should start worrying about?
The notion of a “summer romance” usually occurs on a vacation, a cruise, or other holiday setting, with the heat and freedom heightening emotions, along with a finite end to the possibility of being together.
While that could apply to your situation, his casual invitation for you to visit him has slightly opened the door to a longer relationship.
Two months’ dating is still too early to predict the future.
As for red flags, it depends how you define them. He’s divorced like you, but you don’t say or don’t know whether he has a steady companion when he’s back home. At some point soon, it’s time to ask (without overreacting).
Also, gentle questions about his family/friendship network should help you get a better picture of his life when he’s not living near you. Example: Is he responsible for elderly parents?
Does he have good relations with them and other relatives? Are his close friends in relationships?
Get to know him better.
I'm ready to start dating again after the loss of my spouse.
I've been researching some dating sites, but the data’s mostly from the USA and it's intimidating to put myself out there in America.
Any suggestions on "safe" sites for widows/widowers in Canada?
It's vulnerable information to state on a profile that you’ve lost your partner and could attract creeps who play on people’s vulnerability.
I'm still in love with my husband. Those feelings didn't pass away when he did.
I believe that others who’ve lost their partners would understand this best.
Any thoughts or recommendations?
Taking a Chance
Millions of people use dating sites. Some have very happy results. Staying safe is your priority and responsibility.
Widely-used sites, e.g. Plenty of Fish and Match.com are accessible by Canadians.
On any site, state your interest in Canadian responses, only. Do the same if you go onto one of the several sites that specifically cater to widows, widowers, newly-singles, and mature daters.
On a widows’ site, be wary if you’re asked intrusive questions about finances, owning your own home, etc. Meet in person as soon as possible, in a public place, with a friend/relative calling to see if you’re okay.
Readers’ Commentary Regarding the scenario where a straight woman rejects a man’s advances, and so is labelled “queer:”
“There’s nothing wrong with being queer, but when it’s a lie, it’s a fraud and possibly legally actionable.
“Similarly, when a person’s verbally abused, but doesn’t respond with anger: The “target” person has maybe experienced it before and is bored by the repetition, or knows they’re being deliberately provoked.
“The bully then doesn’t get the response desired. So, the target is labelled by observers as autistic, or “tone-deaf” or other untrue things.
“There’s no mention of the target showing a “game-face” or “exemplary self-restraint.”
“They’ve saved themselves from being punished for retaliation, since that’s what would be noticed and widely reported.
“Better mislabelled than fired, jailed or worse, which is what the bully really wants.”
You’ve given good advice to readers who may be the object of fraudulent social labels, or bullying.
Tip of the day:
Get to know enough about the person you’re dating to build trust.