Moreover, as they age, adults concentrate on connections to family, viewing themselves in a communal context (Fingerman, 2001).Based on a lifetime of investment, ties to family and friends are of heightened importance to older adults (Blieszner, 2006).Collectively, these theories suggest that people of different ages may present themselves in distinct ways when seeking romantic partners.
Indeed, the language people use when constructing their self-presentations may convey such differences.
We collected 4,000 dating profiles from two popular websites to examine age differences in self-presentations.
We used stratified sampling to obtain a sample equally divided by gender, aged 18–95 years.
Indeed, popular media report that more older adults are finding dates online (Watson, 2013) with one source claiming that adults aged 60 and older represent the largest growing segment of adults using online dating websites (Ellin, 2014).
As such, online profiles provide a unique opportunity to examine similarities and differences in younger and older adults’ self-presentations when seeking a dating partner.