NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- Last summer, the buzz was all about the Florida-based retirement community with mid-morning happy hours, a black market in Viagra and free-loving swinging seniors. The rowdy retirees of The Villages were pictured in their golf carts swilling cheap booze -- all grins and good times.
Unfortunately, the reality for many older Americans is much different. With children scattered and few friends remaining, loneliness can be a major mental -- and physical -- health concern. A new site says that it is coming to the rescue, helping those 50 and over find new friends, travel companions, roommates and “activity” buddies.
Boomerly launched just last week, claiming members from around the world, and the free service aims to connect users with people who are like them, “no matter where they live.”
Margaret Manning, the founder of SixtyandMe.com, a blog community of “over 100,000 Baby Boomer women,” created the new matchmaking site after conducting a web survey of 2,000 seniors. The respondents revealed their thoughts on friendship and intimacy after 50.
“Our generation is struggling with divorce, forced retirement, changing family circumstances and a perceived lack of purpose,” Manning said in a press release announcing the service. “As the social ties that we relied on in the past fade, we need a new way to build meaningful friendships.”