Seniors Flirt With AARP's Online Dating Service

Play associated audio

Here's the plan: Find someone, get married, grow old together. But what if you've done that, and suddenly you find yourself back at square one?

For those 50 and older, AARP is helping to find that special someone.

"I never expected to be single and 50," says Dina Mande of Santa Monica, Calif., a frequent user of the site.

Mande met a younger man and was happily married for seven years when, out of the blue, she says, she was divorced and back in the dating pool. Now she wants to try dating men her own age.

Enter the AARP Dating site, powered by the online dating engine How About We. It's a site where you say, "How about we go to the beach?" and someone who thinks that's a great idea comes with you on a date.

Mande has gone out on half a dozen dates since the site launched in December — including the beach — and has even met a silver-haired fox.

"He was gorgeous. He was a doctor. And he looked like George Clooney," Mande says. "He did not look 60 at all. He was beautiful."

Mande and thousands of other hopefuls have turned to AARP to find their match. And with more than 37 million members, it's a concept many of them have been waiting for.

Sami Hassanyeh, AARP's chief digital officer, and his team watch as older people use the online message boards to find each other and start relationships. Hassanyeh says the idea of launching the dating site came after seeing the results of a happiness study.

"Your social circle and social interactions really are directly correlated to your level of happiness," Hassanyeh says. And when you're happy, studies show you stay healthier longer.

"It fits with our social mission of helping end isolation, and help people find companionship," he says.

That's something Mande has been searching for. Luckily, she's come to the right place.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Lisa Lucas Takes The Reins At The National Book Foundation

Lucas is the third executive director in the history of the foundation, which runs the National Book Awards. Her priority? Inclusivity: "Everyone is either a reader or a potential reader," she says.
NPR

The Shocking Truth About America's Ethanol Law: It Doesn't Matter (For Now)

Ted Cruz doesn't like the law that requires the use of ethanol in gasoline. So what would happen if it was abolished? The surprising answer: not much, probably.
WAMU 88.5

The Latest on the Military, Political and Humanitarian Crises in Syria

Russia continues airstrikes in Syria. Secretary Kerry meets with world leaders in an attempt to resolve the country’s five-year civil war. A panel joins Diane to discuss the latest on the military, political and humanitarian crises facing Syria.

NPR

Should India's Internet Be Free Of Charge, Or Free Of Control?

Facebook's free Internet service was banned in India on the basis of net neutrality this week. Internet providers, regulators say, should not be allowed "to shape the users' Internet experience."

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.