But now that you've reached a new stage of life — and maybe have relocated or retired — making new acquaintances can be a little trickier. Close relationships with others are vital to your health — physical, mental and emotional — your self-esteem and even your longevity, according to recent research. Get over the idea that everybody else your age already has all the friends they need. Work out at a nearby gym or the Y — but don't just do the machine routine: Join a class so you see the same people every week. "Don't put too much pressure on a fragile new friendship because that can scare people away," Paul says. Also see: Be a Better Friend Not only do you have fewer opportunities to meet new people, but "there's also a little more resistance to forming new relationships later in life, and your skills can get a bit rusty," says Marla Paul, author of The Friendship Crisis: Finding, Making, and Keeping Friends When You're Not a Kid Anymore. So if watching Grey's Anatomy is the highlight of your week, or you find yourself enthusiastically chatting with telemarketers, you probably need to make some new connections. "Nobody wears a sign that says 'I'm looking for a friend,' but there are a lot of people out there in the same boat," Paul says. Accept invitations, even if you suspect it won't be the night of your life. If someone doesn't call you back immediately, don't assume they simply don't like you. If you're feeling hesitant, a good way to ease into it is to visit a few dating sites and look around.Most services allow you to check out their members at no cost or obligation.“If I had to do it all over again, I would do it twice,” Andy says.“To find someone after losing a partner, it’s a very good life.” Like Andy and Muriel, more single seniors than ever before are seeking relationships today.
Kathy Damer is the editor and creator of a site dedicated to providing advice and support for seniors in search of love and companionship.
Dating sites have become enormously popular among the older generation in recent years.
In fact, boomers and seniors make up about 20 percent of online daters today, and the numbers keeps growing. Meeting Online If you're interested in dating again or are just looking for a friend to spend time with, dating websites are an easy way to meet hundreds of new single people without ever having to leave home.
En español | When you were in school, you had no problem making friends. Museums, hospitals, churches, animal shelters and schools are always looking for people to help out. You'll find dozens, even hundreds, of groups in your area, focusing on everything from animals to Zen meditation. If you can't find the right group, you can start your own.
Ditto for those years when you were a parent of growing kids. Many churches and synagogues make it a point to welcome newbies and introduce them around. Find opportunities in your area at AARP's or Volunteersof When you meet someone you like — a salesperson or someone seated next to you at a lunch counter — take the initiative and ask for an email address.