8 Dating Rules After Turning 50 Everyone Should Know About

Fun and simple strategies to make your dating journey less overwhelming

Reviewed by Stephanie Mintz, MA (Clinical Psychology), LMFT Stephanie Mintz Stephanie MintzMA (Clinical Psychology), LMFT
Written by , MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Shivani Chandel MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Experience: 4 years
Edited by , MA (English) Subhrojyoti Mukherjee MA (English) Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach Sneha Tete Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years

When you were in your 20s or 30s, dating was a whole different ball game. But, the dating rules after 50 are not the same. For starters, you are not the same person you were 20 years ago. Your priorities have changed, you have become wise and mature, and you seek companionship and stability. Finding a romantic partner who wants the same without wanting you to change is a huge prerequisite. You also have little patience for ghosting, dishonesty, breadcrumbing, and ill-treatment. But, dating in your 50s can help start a fresh chapter in your life.

If you have not been dating for a long time and want to know how to date in your 50s, we are here to help. Check out the tips below to re-enter the dating game without feeling overwhelmed, burdened, or ignored! Here are our top 7 tips to keep in mind for dating after 50. Read on!

1. Online Dating Was A Taboo Long Ago, But Now, It’s Really Not!

Online dating was a taboo but not anymore for dating after 50
Image: Shutterstock

When you start dating in your 50s, the prevailing dating trends might not resonate well with you. You might take some time to get used to this altered dating scene. The biggest shift you might experience is that it is now very common to meet people online.

A study was conducted on 1705 Spanish university students aged between 18-26 years to analyze the prevalence of online dating apps among them. Among them, 71.5% were nonusers, 15.8% had previously used an online dating app, and 12.7% were currently using one with frequency of use increasing with age.

There is a good chance of you finding potential matches on the hottest new dating app. However, it is better to go for websites that are paid for. This is definitely one of the most important dating rules for those over 50. The reason? The company that gets these people enlisted has their credit card details verified, which also works as a check against fake profiles. Plus, nobody really spends money on things they are not really interested in.

You can try websites like Match and eHarmony. If you feel a little intimidated by too many young people on the platform, you can choose the age filter and connect with people of your age. Additionally, you can work on your profile with your friends. Get them to help you with your pictures. Ensure that the pictures you use are recent and not from 20 years ago.

Be honest in your profile, because frankly, deception is not going to help you if you are looking for meaningful relationships. Most people in your age bracket might be looking to find an emotional connection as opposed to one night flings, so make sure you know what you are getting into. It may be a little intimidating to get back to dating in your 50s, but the more honest and upfront you are, the higher the chances of building a genuine and loving relationship.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Start the conversation with your date on a light note. You can also use humor here and there to lighten the mood and put your partner and yourself at ease.

2. Ensure You Employ Traditional Tactics Too

When you get back to dating after 50, embracing the new culture is important. But honestly, some tried-and-tested traditional tactics can also work very well. Though using online dating apps is the new norm, do not rely only on technology to be your savior. Remember to keep the face-to-face meetings alive too.

Let your friends and family know that you are ready to get back into dating. Attend events and outings arranged by work, so you get to meet new people. You can also check out different meetup groups to find people who share your interests. It would be a good way to blend your interests and personality with your online presence. You can meet people who share your interests by joining book clubs or movie clubs, and from there, you can get talking!

If none of these methods interest you, you can go for a matchmaking service like It’s Just Lunch. They provide highly personalized services, and it’s more likely that you might get a strong match easily.

3. Do Not Take Rejections To Your Heart

Do not take rejections to your heart for dating after 50
Image: Shutterstock

For most people, getting into dating after a certain age is intimidating. In addition to this, dealing with rejection can be challenging, especially for people who have not experienced rejection before or it has been a long time. Apart from being discouraging, rejection can feel quite hurtful too. However, the key here is to not take the rejection to heart.

Most people who startdating in their 50s come with a host of different sets of experiences. Sometimes, they may be scared of becoming emotionally vulnerable, or they just want to stay friends with you. The rejection might not have anything to do with you personally, but it might be because of their preferences.

For those of you struggling to cope with rejection, here is something that therapists ask you to consider: the ‘pineapple theory.’ It says that people who do not like pineapple end up keeping it off their plate. But there are still many who love pineapple. Just as with food, people have preferences when it comes to dating as well. You have a type too. Do not feel disheartened, and keep trying to get the best prospects. This is perhaps one of the most important and golden dating-after-50 rules.

4. Let Go Of The Past Pain Before You Start Something New

When you start dating after 50, the chances are that you have gone through some really tough relationships. It can be very challenging because there may be a lot of hurt and unpleasant experiences from the past that might still be giving you nightmares. You cannot get into a new relationship without resolving past hurt.

You might end up dating someone on the rebound, but such a relationship might not last. To build a healthy long-term relationship, heal your past hurt, and ensure you embark upon a new journey altogether without looking back at the past.

5. Do Not Let A Few Bad Dates Dishearten You

Do not let a few bad dates dishearten you for dating after 50
Image: Shutterstock

You went out there. You revamped your look, you got all ready to get back into the game. But then, a few bad dates have left you feeling discouraged. Finding the right partner takes a lot of effort. You might not end up finding your ideal partner and falling in love with them within the first two or three dates. It is perfectly okay to take your time.

Dating definitely comes with its fair share of ups and downs. You have to realize that you have to get out there and go on a lot of dates with different people before you actually find somebody you can establish a connection with. Hence, do not give up after the first few bad dates. Treat them as part of your dating experience. It could take a lot of time for you to find the right kind of person. However, if you remain determined, you will get there.

protip_icon Pro Tip
Finding the right person may take more than a few dates. Be patient and use the time to meet new people, learn things about yourself, and enjoy your own company.

6. Have A General Idea Of What You Want

This goes for everybody, not just those who are back in the dating game in their 50s. When you get back into the dating scene, have a rough checklist ready. Reflect on what did not work out for you in the past and figure out what is actually a hit for you now. With experience, you will learn to understand people better. This will help you build healthier relationships with prospective partners.

When you start dating after 50, begin by looking for similarities and shared interests. For instance, maybe your children can be a common connect or being from a similar book club can get you close. However, differences are inevitable. You might have different political views or interests. But figure out what differences you are willing to let go of. Learn to recognize what really matters to you in such situations and see if you can work through your differences. Having a good idea of what you want and what you don’t will help you immensely.

7. Have Realistic Expectations

Maintaining realistic expectations is not just important for those who are going back into the dating scene in their 50s, it is for everyone. Compatibility involves you seeking shared values and interests rather than seeking perfection. It is best to be open-minded, embrace imperfections, and prioritize genuine connections over the superficial. Be confident in expressing your needs, and establish boundaries early on, and allow your relationship to unfold naturally, without rushing into commitments; embrace the wisdom you have gained over the years. Moreover, it is essential to appreciate the unique qualities of potential partners, and to be considerate of their diverse life experiences. Hence, manage your expectations about physical appearance and be receptive to an emotional connection.

8. Try The Three-Date Rule

Try the three-date rule for dating after 50
Image: Shutterstock

Try the three-date rule. Do not judge a person after just one date. Everybody tries to be impressive on the first date. They might not show you their real selves, and they may even agree with you about everything. In fact, it is only after two-three dates that you will get to know the person better. You will then be able to figure out if you have a comfort zone with them or not. Spend some time with people before deciding. Ensure that you go on at least three dates before rejecting a person or making a final decision.

With all of these fun and simple rules, we are sure that dating after 50 will not be all that difficult for you. Follow these rules and get back in the dating world! These tips will make your transition back into dating easy and comfortable. Happy dating!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is dating over 50 so hard?

Dating becomes hard when you are over 50 because of a lack of confidence and patience. Some people may also dread technology and do not understand how to use dating apps.

How long should you date before marriage in your 50s?

Each couple is different and may not require the same time. However, a reasonable time you can date before marriage is between 1 to 3 years.

Key Takeaways

  • When you’re dating after 50, start looking for people with common interests and similarities. For example, your children could be a common bonding experience, or you could be members of the same reading club.
  • Try websites like Match and eHarmony because there’s a good possibility you’ll meet potential mates.
  • Attend company-sponsored activities and outings to meet new people.
  • Experiment with the three-date rule. Before dismissing someone or making a final decision, make sure you go on at least three dates.

Dating for women over 50 can be overwhelming. The following video provides some useful tips that will help you navigate your dating life. Hit the play button now to know more!
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Stephanie Mintz

Stephanie MintzMA (Clinical Psychology), LMFT

Known internationally as The Strategic Relationship Consultant™, Stephanie Mintz, MA, LMFT, provides individuals and couples with actionable strategies to reach their relationship goals. She has 8 years of experience and is highly sought-after for her ability to help individuals and couples at all stages of relationships, from dating, living together, pre-engagement, pre-marital, and just married to marriage strengthening/difficulties, brink of...read full bio

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