Conquering the Fear Factor of Midlife Dating – Part Three

kiss“But there’s more…” – the three words made famous by late night infomercials – apply to mid-life dating as well.

In this crazy world, where the news plays up the dangers lurking around the next corner, you may have other very real concerns about dating. When you let anyone into your life, you run the risk of being hurt and betrayed emotionally, but today, much more is at stake.  You do not want to put your heart on the line and be scammed, abused, infected, or worse.  With the prevalence of internet dating, wolves and lions can portray themselves as sheep and lambs.

These realities make it necessary to exercise cautions on top of the usual ones about not jumping into a relationship too quickly.  If you find someone you would like to meet or get to know, just exercise reasonable care, such as meeting in a public place and not revealing intimate details about yourself until you know them a little better.  As your relationship deepens, do the math.  Does everything they say add up?  Watch for discrepancies.  If you decide to try online dating services, be particular; remember – you are in the process of screening potential partners.  Established services like eHarmony have a cost associated with them, as they screen potential individuals in a more thorough way than many free sites; however, choosing a site that suits you is key.

Between the last time you dated and now, the sexual revolution has changed perceptions about the relationship between sex and love so that things are more casual now.  This does not mean that you have to change your values if you are not comfortable with intimacy without a long term commitment, but sex is often a part of relationships that are not expected to lead to marriage.  If you decide to join the revolution, fears about STDs and HIV must temper your behavior.  You must also be prepared to discuss thing like contraception, protection, and HIV testing with new partners as soon as the relationship starts to turn romantic.

Dating can be a wonderful entrée to an exciting new chapter of your life. You must protect yourself from physical and emotional harm, but conquering your own personal fear factor is the first step to new adventures and happy times.

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