Dating at Midlife/just sex?



I've been having an on and off again fling with this guy for a little over a year now. We basically started seeing each other and he told me that he couldn't date anyone with kids right now and that he wasn't in a good place to date ( I have 2 kids and I'm a single mom). So after an emotional break down, I let him go and even started dating again but every time I've started seeing someone, this guy gets jealous and he'll start texting me how he misses me and how he cares about me etc... I recently decided to sleep with him and I had it in my mind that it was just sex and that's how I treated it but the whole time he wanted to hold me hands (like fingers interlocked) was rubbing my back and just being really sweet. He even stayed for a while after. I'm not expecting to ever have a relationship with him but my question men hold your hands like that during sex and get jealous if you see other guys, if it's just sex?

Yes to both.

Sex is bonding.

In good sex people make strong connections.
I worked with a man many years ago who had a "just sex" relationship with a woman and then
I saw him three years later and he was still with the woman.
What was that about I asked him. He said, Well, when you have sex with
someone every Wednesday and Saturday for a year, you get to be very fond of them.

I think the key phrase is "not in a good  place to date."  

For whatever reasons, he can't see himself in an enduring relationship. He doesn't feel
ready for the responsibility.  Or he feels you are not someone he could commit to.
He's told you. Don't expect anything from me.

At the same time he's lonely and feeling a bit lost. Midlife singles can
be like that and it can last years.

It might be the same for you. YOu also may be a bit lost and lonely and yet
you also feel that this guy really doesn't measure up to what you really need and want.

So it's a compromise for both of you. Maybe.

Relationships like this help you through a passage.
They can also, be a bit of a trap.

But at the same time, there is a genuine caring and appreciation being shared.
That tends to be a little confusing.

Just because a relationship has some real limits, it can still be loving and caring.

I hope I've addressed your questions.  Feel free to follow up.

Also, you might want to have a conversation with me about some of those issues.
If so, let me know.

Philip Alan Belove, Ed.D.  

Dating at Midlife

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Philip Belove, Ed.D.


Hi. I`m Philip Belove (that is my name, really). I`m 71 and I`ve been a psychologist all my midlife, the past 35 years. My specialty has been counseling and coaching other midlife adults.  I think we all figure things out as we go along, but even more so at midlife. Being between 40-ish and 60-ish and single is like being a stranger in a strange land. I`ve learned which questions help people find their own way. I created this category, I publish a blog at and I write articles for various web sites. My commitment is to help people 1) understand and improve how they deal with others, 2) understand the forces that rule the relationships they are in, and 3) make the decisions which will shape, or create, or end those relationships  so they achieve the goal of midlife development  to finally live with personal satisfaction. I`ve been divorced twice myself. I`m in a satisfying relationship with a fine person. I`m very interested in learning about your challenges and in offering what I can.


Professionally: Licensed Psychologist. Marriage and Family Therapist. Coach.Author. University Lecturer. Personally: I'm 71. I've probably made all the big mistakes, er, learned the big lessons.I've forgiven myself and made many apologies and I've made it into a good, stable, sweet relationship. I now have a perspective on midlife.

Please check out my book, Rabbis in Love, at Also my blog at The Rabbi book was done as part of a research project. My collaborator, Marilyn Bronstein, and I wanted to interview couples with very successful marriage and also we wanted to talk to people who cared as much about their spirituality as love. Maybe being able to love and be spiritual were one and same, we thought. So we found a rabbi couple and the interview was so astounding that we interviewed nine more rabbi couples. One dropped. They'd revealed too much. It's a fascinating book and, Jewish or not, religious or not, these couples do a lot of things right and there is a lot to learn from them.

Masters in Counseling Psychology, Alfred Adler Institute Doctorate in Consulting Psychology, focus on family therapy, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

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