How do I Bumble or do other dating sites at my age?
February 10, 2021 3:05 PM   Subscribe

I'm a woman, early 50s, interested in men. I haven't dated in quite a while but would like to try again. My go-to site in the past was okcupid, but that feels pretty barren. I'm thinking of trying Bumble. Are there people my age on there? Would love to hear first-hand accounts, particularly from women roughly in my age range. I'm also not exactly sure how Bumble works, so explainers welcome! Also welcome other suggestions. Thanks.
posted by gigondas to Human Relations (8 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
It might help if you add your (rough) location if you’re comfortable — different sites/apps are popular in different areas.
posted by mekily at 4:46 PM on February 10, 2021

I appreciate that that you were requesting responses from women in your age range, but as a man in your age range, I can say that there are a significant number of women in their early 50s on Bumble, at least in the greater Vancouver, B.C. area. I would be surprised if it were different in any largish metropolis.
Bumble is quite different from OKC in that once you like someone by swiping right, and you then match with them when they also swipe right - it is the woman who has 24 hours to initiate conversation (there are paid upgrades to extend that). I am using the genders of your question for my explanation.
You are not going to find anywhere nearly as much information from the profiles on Bumble as you could find on a fully filled out OKC profile - and by the same token, prospective dates aren't going to see much more about you than your photos, and some general info about you.
Good luck!
posted by birdsquared at 5:26 PM on February 10, 2021 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: I'm in NYC.
posted by gigondas at 6:38 PM on February 10, 2021

1. There are plenty of women your age on Bumble in my mid-size city. New York is certain to be greater.

2. As a man not too much younger, I prefer Bumble among dating sites. The buy-in and setup lead to a different and (hopefully) more serious crowd. The profiles are briefer, so you have to be pretty crisp in your word choices. A good first photo is key.

3. OKC has gone through a number of changes in the past while that make it (in my experience) worse than useless. These changes include a high rate of recycled matches, inability to search by specific filters, the system *ignoring* your stated filters in favour of giving you more results, presenting past likes as though they are current likes, etc. The new ‘passport’ feature, where matches are presented regardless of geographic location, is only a vehicle for spam likes. I just gave up on OKC, as it was only frustration. Which is too bad — it used to be the only site with any depth. And that said, the proportion of likes who had actually read my profile was steadily decreasing.

I would suggest signing on to Bumble. It’s not ideal, the least-terrible one out there, in that the system behind it is an honest one. It’s not trying to game you as a customer as all the others seem to.

Good luck. You won’t be alone, I guarantee it.
posted by Capt. Renault at 7:10 PM on February 10, 2021 [2 favorites]

I have a few friends who are (1) women in your (our) age range and (2) live in a part of New Jersey that is often considered a suburb of New York and (3) have had some success on Bumble, (4) sometimes with men who live in New York City. So I think it’s definitely worth trying.
posted by ejs at 7:28 PM on February 10, 2021

As a guy who just turned 50, I haven't found any service that worked well for me, but then, I'm pretty average looking. (5/10 at best) so I am not surprised. But I'm pretty YOUNG average looking. I can pass for someone in his 30s until you get closer and notice the wrinkles. Nobody swipes right on me, basically. And I've used Bumble, Hinge, Tinder, OKC, even POF, and Tantan, which is mostly for Asians for sometimes scammers get on trying to catfish someone. ("I'm a nurse currently deployed to Iraq." yeah, right!)
posted by kschang at 12:09 AM on February 11, 2021 [1 favorite]

NJ 54 year old woman here. I was looking to get back into dating after years with an old partner that wasn't going anywhere. I tried dating someone I met "in real life" and that ended rather quickly. Someone on this site suggested so I signed up.

Lots of men to choose from, but no one that I was interested in ever messaged me back.

Then someone else on here (on a different question) suggested Bumble. So I signed up for that too. I had a lot better luck in some ways (chatted with a few men; met one for a date). Then I messaged a guy who had been in my "hive" for about a week. To me, he lived too far away for serious dating, and I had been swiping left on anyone who lived too far (more than 30 miles). But there was something about this guy that I couldn't swipe left. He answered my message within half an hour.

We've been dating for almost 6 months and I am head over heels for him. We take turns driving to each others homes each week (he lives in Philly and I live in central NJ).

Bumble for the win, for me.
posted by annieb at 11:37 AM on February 11, 2021 [4 favorites]

I'm sorry, I should have explained Bumble better. I paid when I signed up. Made up my profile with a few pictures and a small essay about me. On Bumble, you can search, and then swipe right if you like someone. Other people can do the same. If someone is interested in you, and swipes right, they go into your "hive". You can check your hive daily to see who was interested in you. And if you are interested in them, you swipe right. The app then tells you that a match has been made, and YOU have 24 hours to "make the first move" by sending a message. You can also extend it to 48 hours (I think if you "paid enough" for the membership).

If you don't like someone, or are not interested, you can swipe left. You do get an option to undo a left swipe if you do it accidentally, but I'm not sure how long that option lasts.

It worked for me. Best of luck! (It's okay to get frustrated too, because I was at one point)
posted by annieb at 11:47 AM on February 11, 2021

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