Importance of Compatibility in Senior Relationships

On Life and Love After 50 eNewsletter – December 11, 2020

By Columnist Tom Blake

                 (There are two parts to today’s eNewsletter)

Part One  – Importance of compatibility in senior relationships

Marie, a dedicated Champ, emailed this week. This was the 10th time in eight years she’s chimed in. How do I know that? It’s the incredible archive system that provides.

She posed a question that initially seemed like it’d be easy to answer, but the more I thought about it, the trickier it became.

Marie wrote, “Compatibility seems to be the keyword when talking about relationships. Is compatibility or should compatibility be the basic foundation when meeting someone? So many people are involved in compatible relationships but passion and emotion are missing.

“Why am I so confused about this stuff at 68? I’m divorced. I need clarity on this.”

And soon after Marie wrote, our newest Champ, Kay, emailed, “I just came across your site and find it very interesting.

“I am far beyond 50, however, I am in excellent health and am full of energy, and have a good sense of humor! I am blessed that my dad taught me about cars, guns, and sports. 

“This enables me to get along with men as we have much in common (i.e., compatible). I am divorced and thought I found this great guy, but we just broke up due to his temper! 

“Meeting men online is nearly impossible as it is mostly fantasy….not real!

“I would love to have a special man in my life. I have no family, so I would like to meet someone, however, there is no place to meet anyone!”

I responded to Kay and asked her to tell me a bit more about her experience with the “temper-tantrum” man

She said, “This man has good qualities but he goes from zero to 500 over nothing. The last time he was driving and was squealing tires and jerking the wheel and taking curves dangerously.

“Should he have a wreck and I am injured, I have no family to help me…if I get upset I get quiet for a moment but he has other characteristics that are embarrassing and unnecessary! I love his sisters and one son but I just can not do that!

“I turned 75 on Veterans Day!  Fortunately, I am on natural things and no meds and am energetic and have a sense of humor, and am a firecracker!

“People guess me to be younger but it’s all about how a person feels! I do volunteer work at a military base and PBS station and help the Legion for the Veterans and try to help my friends when I can. But oh, to find love again! I just would love someone in my life!

“It has been challenging as the driving incident described above happened on my birthday and I would never ruin anyone’s birthday!” 

Since I was contemplating the topic of compatibility, I responded by asking whether she felt compatibility is important in a relationship. And, I mentioned that we shared the same birthday: November 11.

Kay replied, “I believe it’s important. Couples can have some interests that are different…but, I find life calm and peaceful and yet exhilarating when two people enjoy similar things and both love the same way.

“I enjoy a connected feeling! I believe it is important to view things similarly as well. To respond to things similarly. However, perhaps the man is not as “romantic” but I write journals of thoughts and feelings and if I want to put a note by his plate I would like him to appreciate it as an expression of my love even if he never does.”

I also received an email from a friend, also named Tom, Orange County, California, whom I’ve known for six years. His situation is a perfect picture of how essential compatibility is in a relationship.

Tom shared, “I met Linda online—Our Time—and clicked on the first wine meetup. We’ve been dating exclusively since June 2019.

“I became a widower in 2005 and she was widowed in 2015. But the most favorable factor is we’re 5.2 miles apart on one primary street in South Orange County, so no rush-hour community snarls. She is originally from Michigan and now lives in Orange County.

“Widows and widowers, if they can get over their loss, are positive knowing someone already has—and a new person can—rekindle their love of life. They are not trying to duplicate the past, but know the traits that excite them and embrace reality.

“Online dating is harder for widowed people since other people can say words that inspire confidence, but face-to-face meetings, trips, and other experiences are necessary to allow daters to decide if they are open and can adapt to a new and different person.”

“Linda was an interior design shop manager, and now does life coaching. After our third date, she invited me and flew me to her friend’s wedding in Sicily for a week in the fall of 2019.

“We were able to get in 2020 trips to Palm Springs and San Luis Obispo before the pandemic. She’s a fantastic cook, and I’m a diligent cleaner-upper so we work together after a meal and then enjoy Netflix or a TV sporting event.


Linda and Tom – together since June 2019 – living 5 miles away

“Compatibility is very important. I don’t think ‘opposites attract’ is worth the time to make it a success. The willingness to work together shows mutual caring for each other. Example: Linda found gardening to be enjoyable working with me. Be a Giver more than a Taker, and you will win in the long run.

“We are considering living together, but still in the early talking phase, as we weigh options. Why both pay mortgage, utility bills, etc? 

“If I’m away from her for a few days even with daily phone calls, then I am anxious to see her.”

To answer Marie’s initial question, I say compatibility is imperative. But, other qualities need to be present as well—physical attraction, caring, kindness, and love. Each so critical.

I would enjoy hearing compatibility comments from other Champs.

                                    Part Two – Avoid COVID-19 Scams

As always happens these days when people are vulnerable, scammers try to take advantage of them. Two scams have popped up lately.

Scam One: Puppy Scams

CBS News Los Angeles announced yesterday that with people being lonely during the pandemic, online puppy scams are skyrocketing (up 500% this year). Apparently, the scammers are saying to people that due to social distancing, people can’t see the animal in person before sending money. The article said:  “Scammers almost always request funds through Moneygram, Western Union, prepaid debit cares, through the Zelle app, with bitcoin or other methods that make it hard to recover money.” Kittens, exotic birds, and horses are also being used to scam. 

A good place to get a puppy is at a local animal shelter. However, during the pandemic, puppies are in high demand. The type of puppy you want may not be available.

Scam Two: Vaccination scams are emerging. Do not pay money to sign up for a vaccine shot or have your name put on a waiting list. 

Do not reveal your bank information and NEVER give out your Social Security Number. We will all be informed about the vaccination details in due time. Do not respond to phone calls, emails, text messages, or even someone knocking on your door with vaccine promises and misinformation. 

Author: Tom Blake

Tom Blake is a newspaper columnist in south Orange County, California. He has published five books. His primary topic is finding love after 50 and beyond, sometimes far beyond, for people 80 and older as well. He also blogs about travel at

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