Sixty-something sexologist Joan Price, for one, endorses "gray hookups," but with a couple of strong caveats: The people involved must be emotionally capable of handling their status as noncommitted bed partners, and they must protect themselves against sexually transmitted diseases.
In a national study conducted in 2012, the Center for Sexual Health Promotion found sex partners over 50 twice as likely to use a condom when they regarded a sexual encounter as casual rather than as part of an ongoing relationship.
That doesn't mean all casual lovers feel emotionally bereft in the wake of a purely physical rendezvous, mind you.
Many say they're getting exactly what they want and need.
Many older divorced or widowed men and women are in the same boat. You're probably not desperate enough to stalk your neighbors, or to go looking for friends with benefits in all the wrong places (bars come to mind).
For sure, people who associate intimacy with commitment are ill-suited to sex that's as meaningful as a summer breeze; for them, the FWB arrangement would be a bad idea.
Especially for women who are middle-aged and older, it feels nice to be 'seen' at a time when society tells you that you are becoming "invisible" unless you look like Jennifer Lopez or Cindy Crawford.
I've also learned there men actually interested in dating.
As we sipped wine and gazed out at the hotel's infinity pool and the lights of the city, we talked about how nice it would be have to have a date with us.
Naturally, the topic turned to men and the atmosphere in the room began to resemble a slumber party. We sat side by side, swiping right and left, exclaiming with glee when we matched with someone. I had tried (and still use) other dating applications but the pool of men I had been meeting began to feel limited.