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Let’s say you’re a Mainer in your mid-50s or 60s or older, and one way or another you find yourself interested in meeting someone new. A partner, a lover, a companion, a spouse — someone to share life’s ups and downs. Increasingly, baby boomers head for their computers.
A subsequent email “blizzard” between them revealed he was smart, sincere, a clear thinker and a good writer — all important qualities to her.
Their initial face-to-face “tea date” lasted four hours and confirmed the potential for a meaningful relationship.
“We started seeing each other every weekend after that,” Garber said.
Then I remembered there was this online dating thing,” Faegre said.
Now, Faegre, retired from his career in the computer industry, is in the process of moving in with his fiancee, Elizabeth Garber, 62, of Belfast, who also is divorced.
The couple met online last year and plan to marry next summer.
Garber, a writer and acupuncturist, said Faegre’s profile intrigued her from the beginning.
A quick, free search this week on turned up 173 single, heterosexual women and 193 single, heterosexual men between the ages of 50 and 75 within 20 miles of Bangor. According to a 2013 survey by the Pew Research Center, 8 percent of American adults 45 to 54 years old and 6 percent of American adults 55 to 64 years old have used a dating service to meet other singles.
For 52-year-old Valerie Scott in Bar Harbor, online dating was a no-brainer. “You don’t have to tell anyone about it unless you want to, but, really, it’s becoming the norm.” Another 2013 study found that more than a third of all people who married between 20 met their spouse online, on either a dating site or a social media site such as Facebook. Faegre, 71 and divorced, has lived in the tiny Hancock County village of Gouldsboro for decades.
That study also found that marriages that start with an online meeting are likely to be happier and last longer than those that begin with a social introduction, a workplace meeting or other face-to-face encounter. “There aren’t a lot of fish in that pond,” he said in a recent interview.
After his marriage of more than 20 years dissolved, “I fumbled around a little, trying to meet someone.