Because looking for love is ageless, we talk some tips in our  recent piece on The Girlfriend:

Broadcast the News

Tell your friends, casual acquaintances and even people you chat with at social events that you are in the market. There’s nothing embarrassing about admitting you want to meet someone, though you might want to avoid words like ‘desperate’.  To optimize your odds online, join the big sites (Match and OKCupid have plenty of 40+ men) but then drill down and play to your passions. There are dating sites for everything from clown lovers (we’re not here to judge) to meetdoglovers.com; meetmindful.com and paleoconnect.com, proving there really is someone for everyone.

Form a Swipe Squad

After the initial thrill of having a smorgasbord of available men suddenly appear on your screen, online dating can become overwhelming, if not, let’s admit, downright depressing at times. Bad day at work? Fight with your ex? One too many cocktails? Step away from the screen. Either no one will look good to you or everyone will look good – each is equally dangerous. A better bet: Have a swipe party with your single girlfriends where you can vet, veto or give the thumbs up to each other’s matches. They might see potential you’ve overlooked, and it will definitely put the fun back in the fishing.

Enter the School Zone

Chances are good there are divorced dads at your kids’ school. A ripe opportunity? Yes. A potential mine field? Definitely. Don’t even think about dating another parent in your kid’s class. (If your singing embarrasses them, that would send them through the stratosphere.) School fairs, fundraisers and holiday events are fair game. Go with an open mind and leave the mom jeans at home.

Trade Your Spanx for Spandex

If you spend more than five minutes on a dating site you will notice an inordinate amount of men posing in bike gear (Note to guys: Spandex is not actually the best look for everyone). Bike clubs are having a moment, particularly with divorced men with weekend hours to fill. You don’t have to go all Tour de France, but find a local bike club and join a group outing. If nothing else, it will give you and excuse buy a cute new workout wear – and who knows where that might lead?

Reunited and It Feels So Good

High school and college reunions are all about showing off how fabulously your life (and recent crash diet) have turned out, right? After all, no one posts ‘Got divorced; Currently spending lonely nights with Chubby Hubby’ in their alumni updates. But trust us, you will not be the only person flying solo and that guy you couldn’t get up the nerve to talk to sophomore year may be suddenly single, too. The good news: You will have a lot of common ground, which is not a bad starting place for any relationship.  The not so good news: Any hopes of fudging your age pretty much gone.

 

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5 Things Never to Do with an Ex

SCULPTURE & ART-2One of the reasons I co-founded Jyst is because, honestly, I was bugging my co-founder, Nadina, to death with questions about my ex. I needed new, objective women to give me the straight truth (and help me leave poor Nadina alone). Nine months later Jyst, the crowdsourced anonymous dating advice app, was born. And guess what? Some of the most common questions have to do with exes. So, after reading thousands of posts, here’s what we learned NOT to do:

Fall into the ‘Let’s Be Friends’ Trap: Trying to ease the pain of a break-up by staying friends is a losing proposition. If you are the dumpee, chances are you are kidding yourself that the dumper will change their mind. And if you did the heart-breaking, don’t assuage a guilty conscience with the promise of friendship. Either way, you have real friends. Call them.

Forgive, Don’t Forget:  Get angry, scream at the walls, vent to your friends but give yourself a time limit. Then forgive. (It’s hard, we know.)  You don’t have to tell the offending ex that you’re forgiving them (in fact, don’t): it’s enough to know it in your heart. But we are not in favor of forgetting. Selective amnesia and the tendency to remember only happy times is too great a risk. Besides, we may be nice, but we are no wusses.

Keep talking (and talking) about them. It’s a hard truth, but no one really cares all that much after a certain point, so avoid boring your friends to tears. And definitely don’t mention your ex when you get back out there. There is no bigger buzz kill.

Drink and Text. Put your phone in the freezer if you have to, but do not go to sleep with it close by if you are at all at risk to drink and text. Seriously. We mean it. Put it out of reach.

Cyberstalk. Yes, we have all heard this a gazillion times but not one of us has ever truly followed the rule. So, ask yourself, what exactly do you think you will get out of checking their Snapchat stories, Insta accounts, or FB feed? Are you hoping they will see pictures of them crying into their beer? Not gonna happen. And you don’t care about their new life – or you won’t, eventually. Unless you keep looking. So, delete. Unfriend. Move on.

 

5 Things Never to Say on a First Date

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You’ve gotten through the first few moments, the drink orders, the self-conscious chit-chat about the weather. An awkward silence ensues. Whether you want to score a second date or can’t wait to beat a hasty exit, here are five things that you should avoid saying at all costs:

  1. Don’t worry, it’s not contagious.
  1. That’s my ex sitting over by the bar, but no worries he likes checking out all my dates.
  1. You remind me of my father/mother. (That first kiss? Forget about it.)
  1. My job sucks because there’s a guy in my department who is definitely out to get me. It started six months ago. Let me give you ALL the details. (Tip: No one wants to hear about the intricacies of your job issues, especially when they don’t know the players.)
  1. I love you. (Because A. You can’t love someone you just met. B. It will scare the bejeezus and of them.)

Rescue Me

When I first started online dating, I had a deal with a friend. He would call me exactly 20 minutes into each date. If the date was going well, I would answer, “Can we talk later?” If the date was a dud (and trust me there, were plenty!), I would reply, “Her fever his HOW HIGH?” (I had a young child at home.) And then, I would politely – and quickly – race out the door.

My other escape hack: Meeting early evening for a drink and then saying if I was having a great time but had, unfortunately, made dinner plans. My theory: White lies are fine when it comes to dating. Better, after all, than blurting out that you can’t take one more minute of talking about his toy train collection.

So, we’d like to know – What’s your bad date escape plan?

The Conversation Women Are Having In Secret

Over the past few years, much of the debate about women’s lives has centered on our roles in the workplace. We have been coached to Lean In, assume the Power Pose and balance career and family in Unfinished Business. While the approaches differ, they share one essential call to action: Women must fight for greater acceptance, equality and leadership roles in our chosen careers.

With the rise of Tinder and the hook-up culture, much has also been written about how women are owning their sexuality in a similarly independent manner. But when it comes to actual romance, many women appear far more conflicted. (Yes, this is a big generalization, to say nothing of assuming hetero-normative roles. For the sake of argument, work with me here.) The truth is, we are not there yet — and many women are struggling not only with their own behavior but conflicting messages from men.

I co-founded Jyst, the crowd-sourced anonymous relationship advice app, to give women a place to open up about their lives in a supportive environment where we can share, ask, advise and help each other out without judgment when it comes to some of our most intimate concerns. One of the biggest surprises has been how many women struggle to break free of traditional roles, even self-proclaimed feminists. A few representative questions: “I’ve been dating this guy for the past four months, but he hasn’t asked me to be his girlfriend yet. Do I wait or ask him?” “Does it ever work out to ask a guy out first?” The answers are split between ‘You go, girl’ pep talks, admissions of similar insecurities, and shared experiences that men do not always react positively when women take the initiative. For women who pride themselves on being assertive in other areas of their lives, this is an uncomfortable dialog to have in broad daylight.

While issues of women’s rights in the workplace and controlling our own health must be central, it is also time to have a more open discussion about the stereotypical roles we continue to play in relationships. After all, the personal truly is political — and the political is more personal than ever. (Just ask Hillary.) The dialog must include men as well as women for we are all participants and we will all be the beneficiaries of change. Relationships are clearly in a state of flux, and if we are to come out of it in a better place, it’s time to be honest about our desires, confusion and vulnerabilities. As with all matters of the heart, that may just be the hardest thing of all.

How to Deal with Your Ex During the Holidays

You caught your partner texted with his ex. Should you be worried???

You can’t stop thinking about your ex. Should you give it one last shot?

The ex you thought was out of your life just reappeared. Do you answer?

“The holidays exaggerate whatever you’re feeling — loneliness, regret, desire, nostalgia. It’s almost impossible not to start thinking about an ex,” says Jyst co-founder Emily Listfield. JystBustle, and relationship expert Laurie Davis Edwards, founder of eFlirt and author of Love @ First Click, partnered to explore the drama with exes during the holidays.

Because ExMas can be year-round problem. Find what other woman and experts advise on Bustle and post your questions on Jyst for more.

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We Like Never Liked It Anyway!

Who needs to hang on to baggage – real or psychic – after a break-up?!?! On Never Liked It Anyway, you can sell of the bad memories, get advice on how to move on, and find support. Our kinda community! Excited to, to have a change to speak with the brilliant founder, Bella Acton. Here’s part of the interview; find the rest here.

Emily is an all round star; she’s a prolific author, with 6 novels under her belt, and recently founded the app Jyst. An incredible platform that offers women dating advice, in real time, in ways that really support and help women. Emily is a founder with spark; she believes that when women help each other out, magic happens. Here’s what she has to say about all things love, breakups and dating.
What do you do and why do you do it?
I am the co-founder of Jyst  a crowd-sourced, anonymous dating advice app for women. I started it because I was dating again after a long time and was sending a million questions (and yes, men’s texts) to my friends – and co-founder! –  for opinions. Every woman we met was doing the same. But friends aren’t always available or objective. It seemed a natural to create a supportive, snark-free environment where women could help each other through the confusion of modern relationships.
What’s the best gift you ever got?
When my (then) husband and I were first dating, he made me a copper flower with one petal. (He was an abstract sculptor whose works were in major museums.) It hung on my wall for years before he mentioned that the petal was symbolic of  “She loves me, she loves me not.”  I never realized that – and he never realized I didn’t get the symbolism. Talk about subjective reality.