40+ Dating: 5 Ways It’s Changed Since You Were Last Single

man and woman drinking coffee on bench enjoying +40 dating

40 somethings, this is for you. It’s your time to re-enter the dating game and shine! Beginning your 40+ dating journey may feel nerve-wracking, but it’s an exciting new chapter! From online dating to modern expectations, there have been some changes in the dating world. 

If it’s been a few years since you were last single, there’re a few things we should fill you in on to make this a successful new chapter. Don’t worry, we’ll cover the bases. To get you up to speed, here’re the five ways dating has changed…

Everything You Should Know about 40+ Dating Today

Almost everyone’s online 

Whether it’s dating apps or social media, almost everybody’s online and it plays a big role in the search for love today. So if you’re not on social media yet, this may be your time to take the plunge! Getting used to socializing online is a good way to start, and when you feel ready, introduce yourself to the modern dating world by creating an online profile

Once you get the hang of it, online dating is easier than you think and allows you to meet more potential suitors than ever before. There are even specific 40+ dating websites for you to meet like-minded matches. According to a 2017 study, nearly 40% of couples these days meet online and we bet that number’s only going up, so why not try it out! 

Those thumbs need to work 

When it comes to modern dating, texting is one of the most important skills to become comfortable with. It may sound simple, but it’s true! Since so much dating happens online now, this is probably how you’ll say hello to your matches or ask them out. Making a good first impression counts, be that online or in real life. 

While upping your text game may be key to romantic success, don’t worry if you don’t think your current skills are up to scratch. Learning to flirt over text can be fun. Use emojis. Ask the right question. Text back in a reasonable timeframe. Learn how to build tension. To get the lowdown on texting etiquette in your 40s, take a look at our texting rules

Dating multiple people at a time 

When you cast a wide net you catch a lot of fish, and the same goes for dating. When you were last on the market, talking with multiple suitors at the same time may have been frowned upon, but that’s not the case today. This means 40+ dating is totally on your own terms. Thanks to texting and the internet, it’s a lot easier to connect with multiple people. It’s also just more acceptable. 

Speaking with a match online doesn’t mean you’re exclusive, it just means you’re getting to know each other. And it’s perfectly acceptable to get to know more than one match at a time.

If you connect with someone and there turns out to be no spark, don’t worry about it! Simply send them a quick message to explain, unmatch, and get back to exploring this new dating world. 

There’s more than marriage 

And by more, I mean less, and by less, I mean many people are looking for less. Have you gone through a divorce? Or maybe you’ve just split up from your long-term partner? If this is the case, marriage may be the last thing on your mind. But that doesn’t mean you can’t date!

40+ dating can be a great way to meet new people! It doesn’t always have to lead to something long-term or serious. Spend this time getting to know yourself again. Rediscover what you like and don’t like in a suitor. Casually dating is totally acceptable these days, just make sure you’re upfront about your intentions with matches first.

On the other hand, if marriage is a priority for you, don’t feel discouraged, online dating is here to help! Set your profile preferences so that you only match with people who have the same relationship expectations as you. This way you won’t waste time speaking with people who aren’t ready for something serious. It’s a good way to speed up your love story!

40+ dating can be empowering

While romance in your earlier years may have been full of dramatic games, dating later in life can often be more straightforward. At 40, most people have experienced some highs and lows in life, and have a pretty good idea who they are. You also probably have responsibilities that make your spare time precious, so why spend it with someone whose company you don’t enjoy? 

Before diving into the dating pool, think about exactly what you want from it. If you’re looking for something serious, don’t feel guilty about turning down someone who is only looking for something casual. And if you don’t feel ready for something exclusive, don’t feel under pressure to settle down. Feel empowered by your preferences and the life you have created for yourself so far. 

Navigating dating at any age can be tricky. Sure, the dating world may look slightly different from the last time you saw it, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find love or have fun trying! Be patient and give yourself time to get used to this new normal. Who knows, maybe this chapter will be your favorite one yet!

Ashley Papa

Writer and Author

Ashley is a relationship writer and author of her first novel “Vixen Investigations: The Mayoral Affairs“. She writes about it all: sex, love, dating, marriage, and “crimes of the heart”.

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