A few weeks ago I went to garden party given by an old friend. There were about 30 of us there, all longtime chums, mainly middle-aged or older. I was having such a good time chatting and catching up that something strange only occurred to me later. In all the fun and jollity, not a single man had spoken to me — and nor had I spoken to a single man! While the women talked and reminisced, the men just went round with bottles of wine in their hands, filling glasses and saying nothing.
Really, the men might as well not have been there. So why is it that so many men in my age group — mids — are so stupefyingly dull? The women will be chatty, lively and animated, talking to each other, while the men are cowed in a corner, shaking a few sad last grey hairs and staring into the distance. Watch almost any older couple having dinner together in a restaurant or hotel and you will notice that they do not say a word to each other.
Instead, they spend the entire meal in complete silence.
Yet if you prise these women apart from the ever-silent hubby by their side, they will never stop talking. As a single, divorced woman of sixty-plus, I sometimes feel desperate for some male company and conversation. When I went on a very upmarket cruise a few years ago, I was looking forward to some interesting company, and fascinating exchanges at dinner. Instead, I found just the opposite. I was on my own, so had to make an effort to sing for my supper and strike up conversation with complete strangers.
Hot women ready sex dating
If only the men among the or so passengers had made a similar effort. Instead, they sat through dinner without saying a single word. They never asked me a question and did not appear remotely interested in anything I had to say. I got divorced in the late s, and then met a wonderful partner, the witty writer John Sandilands.
He died in and I thought a cruise might help me over the loss and — perhaps as an outside chance —to find somebody equally exciting.
At 51 years old and single, i am part of a growing group. and this is the best age yet for flying solo
Both my ex-husband and John had been exceptionally chatty, lively men but maybe they were rare exceptions in a world where the majority of older men seem to be completely silent. But no.
When I looked round I saw it was just the same on every table. Yet their wives and partners were talking all the time — to other women.
Why single men love growing old
Yet all these men were, or had been, successful professionals who had enjoyed big careers as doctors, lawyers, engineers, businessmen. And shyness with strangers cannot completely for their silence and dullness. After all, a lot of women are shy too, and yet almost always, they will do their best to improve the shining hour with conversation, questions and stories.
The husbands of many longstanding female friends, men I have known for years, are often not much better. They too have absolutely no animation, wit or liveliness about them. My late father in law was so silent his wife always answered for him. Even if you asked him a direct question, she would reply, not him.
Just recently, I went to stay with a friend in France. One day an English couple were coming to lunch and my friend warned me that the husband never spoke. I thought she must be exaggerating, but no. He did not say one word before, during or after the meal. What a waste of space!
All-female parties are almost always jolly occasions where everybody is talking and laughing the whole time; throw in a man or two and all the laughter stops. But however excruciatingly painful a social occasion might be when Trappist- bored older male looking for chat type men are present, at least they are soon over. Imagine what it must be like to be hooked up for life with a dull man. These days, many older men — single, widowed, divorced — are putting themselves up hopefully on dating sites.
There are increasing amounts of such sites aimed at the overs, and they are chock-full of really boring-sounding men. The blokes all say they are looking for a slim, attractive, younger woman naturallybut what do they have to offer in return?
They sound so tedious that you almost fall asleep reading their profiles. What most of these men are after, I suspect, is the nurse and the purse; a woman who will provide financial and ministering angel care in return for this great privilege of having a man in the house.
But women looking for a partner are not fooled; you see the same male profiles on these dating sites month after month and often, year after year. Such men are so rare that they are snapped up instantly. There are few things as enjoyable as a witty, entertaining male companion, whether for lunch or for life, but where do we find them?
Where are they all hiding? And there is simply no point to a man who is not amusing; it is their duty to amuse and entertain us. Older women nowadays go to a lot of trouble to keep their bodies slim, attractive and healthy, and their minds up to date with all the latest books, films and plays, while the men just let everything go to pot.
The man's guide to dating after 50
Most of them never seem to read any books, they never go to the cinema and they are on buckets of pills from a lifetime of unhealthy living and eating. At university and work, it was the men who seemed to call all the shots and the women who remained silent, nodding approvingly. In marriage, it was mainly the men who were the go-getters. So did something happen to them in late middle age whereby they grew a white beard and a paunch at the same time as taking a vow of eternal silence and withdrawing from active participation in the human race?
Often, the only thing an older man can think of to make himself seem cool is to tie his two remaining strands of hair back in a ponytail. It puts us off you even more. Two of my sixty-something male friends offered an explanation of the silent older man syndrome. It sets in, they said, because so many men are quite simply, burned out by the time they reach sixty or so.
They feel tired, old, lonely and redundant, just as women of the same age are, finally, coming into their own. Only books, films, current affairs, thoughts, bored older male looking for chat, feelings ….
Because their husbands have become so dull, ever more older women are deciding to divorce them. They simply cannot stand the prospect of having this uncommunicative appendage in their lives any longer. One woman I know divorced her year old husband because she said he had become an embarrassment to her.
Unless they buck their ideas up and bored older male looking for chat ing in, I can foresee a time when there will be swathes of ditched older men living alone in bedsitters doing crosswords while women of the same age are off having the time of their lives. Already, the sheer s of desperate older men vainly trying to find something interesting to say about themselves on dating sites is an indication of this coming trend.
Top 15 hobby ideas for older people
So, was it me, I wondered? Was I somehow putting these men off, making them nervous? Only books, films, current affairs, thoughts, emotions, feelings … Because their husbands have become so dull, ever more older women are deciding to divorce them. Daily Telegraph - October