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More than any other activity, dinner is where older adults feel the isolation of being alone most strongly.
This is why, for most older adults, a dinner date is the most important first step towards finding companionship.
This reinforces a message that young people get hammered with on a daily basis: nothing matters more than how you look.
We’d be lying if we said that appearance wasn’t important at all to the over-55 demographic, but it turns out to be a much lower priority.
Part of this is probably the wisdom that comes with age, but even more significant is an essential truth about how age works.
Once you get into your fifties and beyond, the actual number of your age becomes less and less significant.
While this is true for some older adults, it is far from universal.
It’s always fun to have attraction, romance, and flirting. Which goes a long way to explaining the next point … That’s right, instead of texting and messaging, they actually prefer to talk to someone on the phone to find out if they like them. All the Millennials out there are shaking their heads, wondering why on earth anyone would like to talk on the phone when they can instant message instead.
Maybe this is because older adults are wise enough to know that looks have very little to do with whether someone is going to be a kind, loving and caring companion.
Maybe it’s because the physical nature of attractiveness changes when you get older, or maybe they know that being “hot and sexy” is more a function of your personality than how you look.
This makes quite a comparison to how many young people organize their first dates, which usually involve meeting up in a bar.
Several of today’s dating services are built specifically around this concept: Grouper, for example, hooks up groups of young people in bars and offers them a free first drink as part of the package. The fundamental premise behind most dating services for young people is that the ultimate goal is to find love and marriage.
This scenario is not just on Match.com, but on E-harmony, Ourtime, Plenty of Fish, OK Cupid, and the rest of the dating websites.