Angela, I have dated a lot of older men in my life. Enough that my friends and family not-so-quietly mention my "Daddy Issues." I've never been sure what that means, I am on good terms with my father. I've always been attracted to the power and maturity of older men, especially when I was younger.
Anyway, I recently ended a relationship with a man 13 years older than me and I'm wondering about dating someone my own age (early 30s), but I don't really know where to begin. I'm worried they'll judge me for my past relationships, or just be too immature to handle a woman like me. Should I stick with what a know or try to squash the rumors? --L.G.P.
Overthinking. Overthinking. Overthinking. Oh yeah, did I mention? YOU’RE OVERTHINKING THIS!!
So you’re attracted to men whose idea of a date is the theater rather than Thirsty Thursday. I don’t think that’s such a big deal. Now that the men your age have begun to have more sophisticated taste, and the money and power that come along with it, you might find yourself interested in someone closer to your age range. Try it. What’s there to lose? This is dating, not surgery. If you make a mistake, well, it’s just a bad date and we’ve all had plenty of those!
As far as judging you for past relationships, that’s ridiculous. You didn’t date mass murderers, you dated old guys. “I can’t go out with you again because you dated a man with an AARP card,” said no guy ever.
Here’s what I think you stick to...shutting down that self sabotaging-voice in your head. Just date, ok? Date frequently, date indiscriminately, date until you stop second guessing yourself and naturally have fun with it.
Angela, do you have any advice for dating apps? I know online in one thing, you pay, you're matched. But there are these free little apps that match people if you both find each other attractive. Any advice? --Tindering
Light it up. Dating apps for smart phones are flooding the market. Ok Cupid and POF launched their mobile versions some time ago, and now apps that connect to your already established social networks such as Let’s Date, Tinder, Bang with Friends, and Skout are flooding the scene as well. All are super easy to use, but what I’m hearing is that even though the basic “I think you’re hot” and “I think you’re hot too” has been established, getting the conversation started is awkward. In fact, many of the matches never go any further than initial pleasantries.
My advice is to keep conversation light, just as if you were meeting someone in a social setting. These apps are very different from online dating sites, where you have more detailed information about the person. If your interest level peaks after a couple of messages, don’t bother. There’s a lot of ground to cover and far too many potential matches to keep track of them all. As a rule, limit your dating app discussions to no more than five people at a time. Juggling any more than five is a difficult tasks for even the most experienced of daters. Once you’ve eliminated a few, head back to the apps and meet new prospects.
Use the same safety measures you would for any cyber dating. You may share a few interest or friends on Facebook, but realistically they are still a stranger.
Do you have a question for Angela? E-mail NakedTruth@bocamag.com!
About Angela Lutin:
Angela Lutin is Essentially Angela. Blogger, Advice Columnist and Dating Guru for the social media age—decoding modern love one tweet, text, and like at a time. Angela’s weekly dating advice column, The Naked Truth, appears exclusively in Boca Raton magazine. Her work appears regularly on the Huffington Post. She can been seen on MTV’s "Made" and Bravo’s hit show, "Millionaire Matchmaker." Crafting personal dating makeovers for her clients, Angela also maintains a private practice, which turns the romantically challenged into the relationship-inclined. Follow Angela on Facebook, facebook.com/EssentiallyAngela or Twitter, @essentiallyang.