He was married with three kids, then suddenly Michael O’Hanlon was looking at a very different future after coming out as a gay man.
After fifteen years of marriage and three children, Michael O’Hanlon came out as a gay man.
Aged in his forties, O’Hanlon was suddenly looking at a very different future, but one in which he pictured finding a male partner to replace his wife. However, he quickly discovered that this new chapter was more complex than he first thought.
After having the responsibility of a mortgage, maintaining a career and raising a family, O'Hanlon tells Insight that he is not looking for a permanent partner, for him it’s about pleasure and fun.
"I've done the kids, I’ve done the picket fence and the house and the whole whatever," he says.
“It's all done, now can we just enjoy ourselves and can we give pleasure to each other and really enjoy the last third of our life, the third act? I think it's terrific.”
The pressure of the Australian dating scene
O’Hanlon says since he turned 60 he is no longer as in demand on the dating scene in Australia.
He tells Jenny Brockie about the pressure he felt due to what he says is the youth obsessed culture in Australia’s LGBTQI community.
"Certainly I feel the body image pressures, especially as an aging homosexual, you know," he says.
But in Europe and the US, O’Hanlon believes that older gay men are still valued and as a result he spends increasing amounts of time over there.
And it’s over in the states that he’s met a man who is slowly turning his attitude around.
“He has really convinced me that I can be an older man and be attractive and since then my confidence has improved.”
But one thing is for certain, don’t expect to see O’Hanlon involved in any groups that have the word ‘senior’ in their title.
“I'm a typical you know, Bob Dylan, forever young sort of, and I used to run senior services for a council and just count me out, we're never going to go to a senior's group.”
Watch Insight's episode Dating After 60, here: