Monday, 2 August 2010

No comfort from strangers....

I have a friend who is not so much dating as 'flinging' with a man who broke her heart over 20 years ago. He married the girl he'd dumped her for, now he's divorced. Home alone, he presumably mused upon his past.... a common event when the present goes wrong and we can't see a future. He found her on Facebook. She's not mad about him but she was free. Another friend was 'reunited' by mutual friends, with a man with whom she'd had a one-night stand 25 years earlier. Both now divorced with kids growing up, they managed 18 months of romantic bliss until France (the country that is) put an end to it. I myself clocked up several years with the good friend of a good friend, a man whose path I'd crisscrossed for over 20 years, until his mid-life crisis proved you really can't teach an old dog new tricks, but that's a whole other story (as Norman Mailer's last wife so brilliantly put it: 'I bought a ticket to the circus. I don't know why I was surprised to see elephants....') In fact, just recently I was approached by two gentlemen callers: one from the very-long-time-ago past, the other a mere ten years ago, both passing through and in need of company.

It's a story I keep hearing recently: 'we actually met years ago....'. Maybe it's an age thing. When you've been around for quite a lot of years there's been enough time for divorce or death to kick in. And there is something strangely comforting in a past remembered if not shared, a suggestion of known provenance rather than the leap of faith into the unknown arms of a stranger. Which has it's place. And it's time. But is a return to the past a good move? Or are we trying to fit a square peg into a round hole? If it didn't happen then, why will it work now? Or was it just the timing that was out, the planets wrongly aliened, the fact you'd already let the wrong one in?

The joy of dating past forty is no less pockmarked by pain, than at any other time. In fact it's worse. Devoid of youthful resilience and an endless supply of potential suitors, it's a tough call. The Internet, that bastion of open-hearted lust monkeys, is no place for old people. The extremely attractive, financially sorted girlfriend who'd flirted with a few virtual dates before she found love in the arms of the old flame from France, recently returned to the net and decided to be honest about her age of 55. Nothing, no one, zilch, zero, not even one of the bald boys. Embracing her maturity, she tried an over 50s site and yes, there were takers, but.......they were all so old. Is the only way forward to go backwards? It's harder for women, we can't even grow old disgracefully. Take some 50 year old man, fill him full of vodka, sit him at a bar with a fag on (oh those were the days) and women will be queuing round the bloke (see Serge for verification....) try the reverse as a women? Not such a good look. And no one wants to wake up looking like Bill Wyman. Oh the injustice of aging.......

Top tip: keep young and beautiful with 2 parts flaxseed (also known as linseed, who knew...) 1 part pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds (Neal's Yard make this ready mixed) quick whizz in the grinder and sprinkle on cereal, soups......anything. Am for 2 large spoonfuls a day for all your omega needs.


  1. You are a phenomenal writer -- not simply what you said, but how you said it.

    What a perfect way to start my day. (Plus a beauty what more could a girl ask?)

  2. It's a tough call! I know several wonderful women who are with their less than wonderful husbands on the basis that you're better with The Devil You Know.

    Over 50, they are unsatisfied with their lives, but fearful of the fact that men will not exactly be queuing up for them because of their ages.

    Yet these women have TONS to offer.

    Maybe one solution is for us all to go a bit gay when we get over the age of 50 as it seems to me that women appreciate the qualities of other women more than men do.

    Ali x

  3. I am sorry so many "blokes" are into youngsters rather than women their own age. I can find no reason to share in support of representatives of my sex as to "why" they act as they do, I assume more than likely from straight-up fear of the quick approaching reaper, but there are still those, amongst us, that DO act our age and would rather spend time (as many of US do) in the company of wise, educated, beautiful women OUR OWN AGE, rather than the half our age looks "great" (subjective term) but has nothing-else-going-for-it crowd. I say screw 'em, if they are too stupid to realize what they are missing, just keep on lookin' and laugh yer ass off when they get dumped.
    Excess vodka btw, goes well with no one of ANY age...

  4. Its funny my ex has just found me on FB after twenty years, I am happily married he is married but obviously not happy and was wanting something I did not want.. it made me feel quite ill... I think that there is nothing more dead than a dead romance..
    I cant imagine dating at my age but if I had to I think I would stick to new ones.. younger than me of course :) and keep them at arms length, Who want to wash someone's bloody underwear all over again xx
    Ps My mother in law takes all those seeds and looks amazing I must get them from Neals Yard thanks

  5. Poignant and thoughtful. The double standard really isn't fair, but what IS fair in this life? I think you'll like what's written on this site: Senior Praise of Older Women. Andy Rooney. What Senior Women Really Want.

    As one who is also trying to sort out the 50s, I find your writings spot-on!

  6. What a great post. I don't think going back ever works out. When I've been single I've gone and looked at a few men that were what we'd call "unfinished business" and that mostly is where they should have stayed!

    Reading this makes me know I want to stay with my boyfriend for good. I'm lucky to have found the right one and hope it lasts. He has all the boxes ticked and a few extra! The thought of having to start dating again fills me with dread and the grass is rarely greener.

    My friend who's 55 has tried internet dating and I was shocked at how old and bald the men were when the women still looked attractive. There must be some good men out there over 50 though, I hope you find a good one!

    I've bought expensive bottles of Udo's oil from Fresh and Wild and it does work, if you remember to take it, which I generally don't. Your suggestions sounds like a much more cost effective way of doing it.

    I hope you've had a good weekend xx

  7. I am fortunate in so many ways, not least the amount of wonderful, sexy, attractive and fun 50+ women I know, including my wife who still floats my boat.
    Linseed used to do a good job on my cricket bat, I'll have to try it:)