The End of Dating – For Me, Anyway

Jeff is 31, and a bit overzealous. He’s charismatic, attractive, generous and knows it. For a while, I was digging him. Then, he began to educate me on an unknown aspect of dating – the power alley. The power alley, as Jeff explained, was the prime age that he and his friends found women to be “datable.” And guess where Jeff and his buddies’ power alley was set? 23-29. This is, according to Jeff, the age range that women have the least amount of baggage and drama. I was so appalled by this blatant form of ageism; I proceeded to drink far too much red wine (it was Malbec – can you blame me?) and sent my most evil glares Jeff’s way.

But, it’s not really Jeff’s fault.

The next morning, after downing ibuprofen and a gallon of water, I began reflecting on Jeff’s theory. Was there really a perfect age range to meet our best match? I had, for years, dated older men; attracted by their confidence and maturity. Oh, and the fact that most of them don’t play video games. But, over the last year and a half as I wrote this column, I frequently dated men in their late 20’s and early 30’s.

Jeff’s dating concept inspired me to develop it further. Perhaps all of us have our own individual power alley, set to specifically match what suits us. Maybe I wasn’t meeting my “one” because I was dating in the wrong alley! We could be on to something here… While Jeff found that women in their 20’s had “less drama” because they didn’t usually have an ex-husband and/or children, I found men in their 20’s to be self-absorbed, knowing little about love. Power alley’s, were not as Jeff asserted, created equally.

From this, I began identifying my own power alley, which allowed me to quit dating the 33-year-old city hippie, who consistently lectured me on the necessity of organic products, but who had neither a job nor a stable living situation. I cut off communication with the 28-year-old who thought that love meant meeting all of his needs while he continually looked at himself in the mirror.

Then, it happened.

In my hometown of Tillamook, Ore., I met the man who was a perfect fit for my power alley. He is 43, holds a master’s degree, is attractive, active, and absolutely adores me. I said a silent “thank you” to Jeff as I realized that his power alley theory had paid off. Getting clear about my perfect match – older, more mature and alive to deeper aspects of life- made it possible for me to attract him into my world.

And because I’ve now found my match (didn’t I set my New Year’s intention to meet “the one?!”), I will no longer be writing this column.

My exploits in dating on the Oregon Coast have led me to meet a man from the coast (!) who has changed my notion of dating altogether. It has been a wild ride; full of ups and downs and continual learning. Thank you for your feedback, for reading this column and for caring about connection as much as I do.

Please stay in touch; you can reach me via my website at: Date on!

By Heather Strang

Heather does healing work, coaching and writing/editing, including writing features and columns, and coordinating events for HIPFiSH since 2008.