Older people fall in love
In love like a tea manager: when seniors find a new partner
Butterflies in the stomach, tingling excitement and palpitations - suddenly love is there. Unexpected and beautiful: when older people fall in love, they feel like they were in their youth again. Now it's time to listen to your inner voice and enjoy the time of happiness.
Divorced or widowed - the idea of remaining alone for the rest of your life is not very hopeful. Nevertheless, most of those affected come to terms with this prospect. But many seniors experience a second spring and find a new partner.
"Love in old age is a very great gift," says graduate psychologist Caro Tille.
After decades of partnership, the feeling of being in love was often only a faint memory. If a new person now causes tingling in the stomach, the surprise is great. "Even 80-year-olds feel like they have gone back to puberty."
But next to the new happiness there are a thousand questions: Can I still do that? Is a new partnership even appropriate? "Most older people approach these feelings very carefully," says Michael Vogt, qualified pedagogue from the Catholic marriage, family and life counseling service.
Consideration for adult children also makes some seniors hesitate: "Children usually no longer see their parents as sexually active beings and cannot even imagine a new partnership with their father or mother."
In order not to offend the family, the experts recommend talking about your own feelings at an early stage. "If you talk about your acquaintance openly from the start, you will enable your children to slowly get used to the idea," says Ragnar Beer from the online couples counseling service Theratalk at the University of Göttingen.
But how should people who are newly in love behave when the children react negatively? "Talk about the fears and wishes of both sides," advises Vogt. The children often fear losing closeness to their parents and see serious competition in the new partner. "Make it clear to your family that you are still there for them."
With the new love, many older people suddenly feel insecure like a teenager again. Whether kissing, holding hands or sexuality: "Love in old age is associated with a lot of shame," says Ursula Bellamy, a qualified social worker from Hanover. Instead of bothering with questions of etiquette, she recommends the courage to be open: "Do not orient yourself to the opinion of outsiders."
In order to take away fears, for example with regard to one's own attractiveness, the partners should have the courage to talk about their feelings. "Write yourself love letters, compliment yourself, show your partner that you find him attractive and desirable," advises Vogt.
It is also important to take the new partner as he is. "Nobody wants to have to change much," says Vogt. The other's quirks and habits should therefore be tolerated generously. With understanding and a little flexibility, love has a good chance. "Take it when the chance arises. Being in love is not only infinitely fun, it also keeps you healthy and fit."
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