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Many single people in their 30s and older find bars and clubs hostile environments in which to meet somebody, and can find themselves increasingly isolated and lonely as the rest of their friends pair off, settle down and have children.
Thomas (35) was single for over a year when he heard about a matchmaking agency, Intro, and signed up.
Having been single herself for many years, Maycock says the singles scene can be grim for men at times, especially when they’ve lost their “wingman” to marriage.
Aware that men tend to be shy of joining online dating sites, the couple decided to build their agency and brand around men.
Today Intro has members on its books ranging in age from 22 to 79.
Rena even had a call from a 90-year-old man last week interested in signing up and, she points out, there may be interested women in their 70s and 80s .
Keating advises women to “be kinder” to men who approach them, even if they’re uninterested.
“I wonder how it would be if women had to make the initial icebreaking move.
The cost of membership of Intro Matchmaking Agency is €495 for 12 months and includes a face-to-face meeting with the Intro staff and five guaranteed introductions.
“A few of my friends had been on dating websites, but I didn’t like the idea of being in a shop window where everybody could look at your photo.
I had heard some bad experiences of internet dating, but I liked the idea of the introductions agency because it was very discreet.” Having been in two serious long-term relationships, Thomas found himself single while most of his friends had settled down with partners and young families.
Both divorced with grown-up children, Jennifer (in her 50s) believes that their shared life experience gives them a greater understanding of the challenges and pitfalls facing their clients.
With a background in counselling and psychotherapy, Haskins is aware that many people looking to meet a new partner following a relationship or marriage breakup or the death of a partner may not be emotionally ready.His job in computer software meant he worked long shifts and he had no “wingmen” to join him on the regular dating scene.