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“You don’t want to become part of the grieving process,” Myers says.
In the heart of downtown Bowling Green is the 2-acre Fountain Square Park, the city center and focal point of this charming town.
The older you get, the more women there are in relation to men. Word of mouth is as powerful as advertising, perhaps more so.
“There’s been a real reduction in the stigma attached to online dating over the last decade or so, and that’s particularly true of older users,” adds Aaron Smith, associate director of Internet research at Pew.
The so-called gray divorce rate has risen sharply — from just one in 10 people over the age of 50 in 1990, to around one in four in 2009 — according to research by sociologists Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin of Bowling Green State University.
Supply and demand works particularly well for boomers, says Paul Oyer, 52, professor of economics at the Stanford School of Business and author of “Everything I Ever Needed to Know About Economics I Learned from Online Dating.” (He met his partner four years ago on JDate.) “Economics is the study of scare resources and online dating is even more valuable as you get older,” he says. And you’re not going to meet people offline in the same numbers.” And more older people feel comfortable trying online dating.
“I can only tell you that they tell me — they’re not,” Myers says.
“They’re mostly looking for women who are 10 years within their own range, often in either direction.” But that, she adds, is also because the sites she chooses are geared towards older Americans.
“So they’re more inclined to try it out for themselves.” The wealthier and more educated you are, the more likely you are to date online, previous Pew studies concluded.
Apps like Tinder are popular among young people, researchers say, but there are more complex reasons why older singletons have gone online.
Boomers are more likely to be single, divorced or widowed, studies have shown.
That makes them a prime target market for dating sites, and with good reason.
One in three single baby boomers has never even been married, according to a 2012 survey by Bowling Green State University’s National Center for Family and Marriage Research in Ohio.
That distinction didn’t last long, as Bowling Green was taken over by the Union army in 1862.