A middle-aged man dating a much younger woman has long been thought of in American culture as a classic sign of midlife crisis.In some circles, dating a younger woman is a status symbol.Although comedians joke about these relationships, a significant age difference doesn’t make a relationship any less real or meaningful, though it may create some challenges that don’t exist when romantic partners are close in age.Navigating the social ramifications of your relationship while struggling with generation gaps can be tough, but a significant age difference can give you the chance to consider new perspectives and appreciate the offerings of a different generation.Although this is a fun rule of thumb, what does research say about age preferences for potential mates?There are two things that predict a preferred partner’s age: (a) your age and (b) your biological sex (male vs. From an evolutionary perspective, it makes sense for women to prefer mates with resources and to like partners who are more established, both of which are more likely in older partners. It turns out that, on average, women tend to be married to men a few years older than themselves (2-5 years).Women who have high-powered careers or a well-developed self-image and want freedom and flexibility are exercising more choice.
These relationships can last; it’s not age that makes the difference, but how well the couple build trust, partnership and a life together.
Age-gap relationships are and always have been controversial, but if you are limiting the pool you choose a mate from by age, you could be losing out. His hair was white and mine a teenage blond, and we turned heads wherever we went, although I didn’t feel an age gap and nor did he. We were happy until the deal-breaker appeared: I wanted children and he didn’t because he had several already.
And so I became attracted to someone closer to my own age: two years older to be exact, which is the average age gap in Ireland and the western world generally. Still, looking back on my age-gap relationship, I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
Socially, there is a role reversal of sorts going on, women are more powerful, and may want men who are younger and therefore, more flexible: men who can handle it if the woman’s career and lifestyle are more important.
Movies and TV shows are also showing women that dates don’t have to be older.
A common rule of thumb, at least on the internet, is that it’s okay to be interested in someone “half your age plus seven” years.