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Planning Retirement Online

Guide to Over-50s Internet Dating

Part 5 - Conclusion: Advantages and Disadvantages

Compatibility matching has been reported as a terrible way to choose a partner. If you like old-fashioned romantic comedies you will know that they are usually about two very incompatible people who end up falling in love. You can put two people together who seem to be well matched but there is just no chemistry between them. When people use categories to predict a potential relationship instead of face-to-face communication, they might approach the wrong person and miss the individual who might be right for them. Rejection and acceptance could be based on perceived categories rather than actual attributes. They are also based on positive characteristics only as we rarely promote our negative side.

Guide to Internet Dating

Another problem is that internet dating can be used to avoid feeling alone when a relationship fails. Finally another criticism of internet dating is that it reduces sex to a leisure activity and a goal in itself and detaches it from love and marriage fidelity.

For further argument against internet dating see:
Psychology Today Article - Why Online Dating is a Poor Way to Find Love

On the other hand, its growth in popularity is because using the internet is an efficient way of finding people to go out with. You can live in an area and not be aware there is someone a few streets away who is searching for the same things you are. It enables you to identify compatible matches or have them identified for you and make choices about whether you wish to continue to a date.

Some see similarities to arranged marriages where people are matched on values and lifestyle, although with internet dating we are doing the choosing for ourselves. It suits all age groups whereas traditional dating is something done by the younger generation in clubs and social networks. There is no doubt that many people do meet the love of their life through internet dating. For further argument for internet dating see:  

Psychology Today Article - An Argument for Internet Dating.

Most of the criticisms are about internet compatibility matching rather than online communications which can help to develop a relationship, although ultimately you won’t know if you are compatible until you meet up. People are capable of making choices by careful reading of profiles and communicating through the messaging service before deciding to meet.

Knowing whether on line dating is right for you depends on a whole range of factors including what your expectations are, your attitude to social networking, your life experience, timing, your self esteem, past relationships, confidence and trust. If we are to get the best from it we need to do our research, follow the guidance on being safe, then follow through to meeting people and relationship building. We hope this guide has helped you to weigh up whether it is right for you at this point in time. If you do go ahead we wish you luck in meeting your new partner.

This Guide is written by Retirement Specialist Beth Campbell supported by members of the LaterLife team.  


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