For most of us the internet is an essential and everyday part of our lives. Whilst it can on occasion be a bit of pain or even a little too addictive, it makes our lives easier and richer.
For some of us our parents will be as familiar with the online world as our generation. But there are still plenty of older people who find the online world an alien and uncomfortable place.
We hope that myLovelyParent will play a small but important role in showing our parents that that the web can be a brilliantly safe and exciting place. We’ve done our best to make the site as simple and straightforward as we possibly can but we’d ask for your help too.
We’re a generation that has, over the past 10 years embraced online dating as a socially acceptable means of meeting new people. In fact for many of us it’s our first port of call.
For our parents they may well be feeling the same as what we did 10 years ago – slightly nervous of entering information about ourselves online, making that first contact with someone through the site, even what their friends might think if they were to find out.
All this is totally natural and acceptable.
It’s important they understand that none of their personal information is ever shared with people outside of the site. It’s completely up to them whether they decide to go on the adventure of meeting someone new online – all you’re doing is giving them the nudge and encouragement to try it out. It is our promise that nobody outside the site will ever be able to access their personal information for any purpose.
A huge part of what we’re trying to achieve is to create a successful, enjoyable experience for our mums and dads. It’s also really important that we help them stay safe online. We’ve created a few articles as guidance but please do keep re-enforcing these and make sure their experience online is as good as possible.
The simple rule to staying safe online is trusting your instincts and not sharing any personal information either inside or outside of the site.
Understand how they might be feeling
Meeting someone new is an exciting and daunting time for any of us. For your mum or dad it might have been a long time since they’ve done this. Some may well have thought they’d never do it again.
Please be considerate and sensitive to how they might be feeling. Help them to understand that it’s okay to take things slowly. And, if at any time they’re not feeling comfortable, to simply step away from it. After all the reason you encouraged them in the first place is so they could be as happy as possible.
By being there when they need you, talking them through their online journey and by checking in to make sure they are staying safe online from time to time you’ll help make this the best experience possible.
And hopefully, not only will your mum and dad make some new friends, they may also meet that someone special.
Also read: Seeing Your Parent Move On
IF YOU'RE SUPPORTING THE ONLINE DATER
We've teamed up with Susan Quilliam and John Seymour to offer extra support to help you on your journey. They’ve also offered their online dating classes and also one-to-one dating coaching to the members of myLovelyParent.
Supporting your parent (relative or older friend) can be a challenging task. It may not just be a question of signing them up to myLovelyParent.com, you'll also need to do some handholding during the journey.
Susan and John have put together twelve key ways you can help:
They offer an initial free chat to explore the possibility of working together and can then arrange a date and time to talk to them, or indeed to both of you.