Dating someone younger keeps you young. Plus, there’s that whole sexual-compatibility thing. “If we can believe that nugget that women and men hit their sexual primes at different times, then a 25-year-old man and a 40-year-old woman is the best of all possible worlds,” she says. “We’re talking enormous amounts of sexual energy.”
According to Ganahl, another upside to dating young~mentorship. “The younger person tends to be in awe of you because you have more life experience and a lot of the things that maturity brings, like power and money,” she says. “And it’s fun to share those things, to not only be a lover but a mentor.”
A lack of life experience can be both a blessing and a curse, though. On the one hand, it means your date’s baggage compartment is more likely to be free of ex-wives and kids. On the other, they may still be on close terms with their inner child, a laundry-impaired brat who can’t get enough of video games and/or Family Guy.
Age incompatibilities can take their toll in other ways, says Ganahl. “Some young men are 23 going on 35, and others are 23 going on 24,” she says. “But if you are interested in the guy for more than just a fling, you have to choose well. Otherwise, you risk being with somebody who says things like, ‘Paul McCartney was in a band before Wings?’”
None of us dates in a vacuum, of course, and remarks by friends and family can have a souring influence on even the sweetest May/December romance. There’s still a stigma that makes it seem like an older woman dating a younger man is unseemly or desperate.”
The big picture
Dating someone older has its challenges, too. Men raised in a more traditional era can be controlling and/or unwilling to accept independent behavior. And society makes certain assumptions about the older man/younger woman match. But despite the issues, there are couples that still manage to make it.
By Diane Mapes