In Defense of the Gap #2: The Pitfalls of Dating Your Peers, and the Perks of Age Gap Relationships

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In our last installment, we discussed the pitfalls of dating your peers, and the benefits of dating an older partner. This time, we’re talking about what older people stand to gain from seeing out young girls looking for older men, and young men who prefer older women. We also hope to dispel some unfortunate stereotypes about the kinds of people who deliberately seek out boyfriends or girlfriends many years their junior. Contrary to popular belief, age gap relationships aren’t simply about maintaining the upper hand over your partner, nor are they the province of insecure men and women who hope a younger person won’t find them out for this or that personality defect. In fact, there are many legitimate reasons why a person of any gender might prefer to concentrate their search for love in the pool of young girls for older guys (or whatever gender configuration is applicable to you), and this list will elucidate just a few of them. This post goes out to all the people in midlife who feel like they’ve been looking for love in the wrong places, but who are still undecided about whether to consider a younger partner.

Pitfall #1: It’s easy to get stuck in a rut.

By the time you’ve reached mid-life, it can be easy to feel like you’ve been there, done that, bought the T-shirt. Exploring your environment and seeking out new experiences may have long since given way to the comfort and reliability of a night indoors spent in front of the TV. And while the comforts of home certainly have their perks, it’s hardly a challenge to see how habitually spending your nights this way can quickly become boring and unfulfilling. Unfortunately, even if you’re more open to new experiences, there’s no guarantee that your partner will be willing to join you for the ride, so you’re left with a dilemma: Do you stay in and subject yourself to more of the same old, same old for the sake of preserving your relationship? Or do you strike out on your own for the sake of novelty? Both options come with consequences: One will erode your relationship, and the other will built resentment on your part.

Perk #1: It’s a whole new world.

If you’re a man or woman in mid-life and you know you aren’t done exploring everything the world has to offer, a younger partner might be exactly the traveling companion you’re hoping for. Even if you’re been there and done that, women who like older man and men who like older women probably won’t have a comparable level of experience. That means there are still plenty of new, untried experiences you two stand to enjoy together in ways that just aren’t feasible when you’re dating somebody your own age. Plus, a younger partner will still have the zeal of youth that you’ve probably long since left behind you, and that force can feel totally revitalizing. If you know you’re the type to want to seek out new horizons, you should consider expanding your search for a partner to include younger women for older men. Young girls for older guys will appreciate having a partner who will act as a sort of tour guide through the largely uncharted terrain of adulthood.


Pitfall #2: Dead bedrooms abound

Most of us have already left our experimental phase behind us by the time that we’ve reached mid-life. We know what we like and what we don’t like in the bedroom, and if we have a partner our own age the likelihood is that he or she is equally set in their ways. We like what’s tested and true, and we aren’t necessarily as open to trying new things as we once were. This can pose a problem for several reasons: One, it can lead to a decrease in excitement between the sheets. Two, it can make our partner feel less desired if we’re constantly falling into the same old routine. Three, it can leave us feeling resentful if we know there are activities we’d like to try, and our partner is simply unwilling. While there is of course room for compromise in every relationship, if sexual incompatibility is a recurring problem it may be that we need to seek out greener pastures elsewhere, instead of doing the same thing again and again and hoping for different results.

Perk #2: Sex is still largely experimental

Let’s be real: For young girls looking for older men (and young men looking for older women), sex is still largely uncharted territory. Most young people have probably had a few partners already, but they likely have yet to be initiated to many new sexual activities. For young women in particular, sex can be tricky terrain to navigate, because they’re so often discouraged from claiming their own pleasure in an empowering way, and taught to prioritize their partners’ orgasm ahead of their own. For older men who prefer younger women, this is an area where you really stand to excel and make a great impression by helping to teach your younger partner that her appetites are nothing to be ashamed of, and that she deserves at least as much as attention as she gives in the bedroom. And make no mistake: Your generosity is likely to be repaid, since a younger women probably will have fewer firm boundaries than an older women who’s had more partners. Since they still have a lot of experimentation in her future, women who like older men will have fewer hard limits until they figure out what they like. Not only do you get to pleasure her, but you get to experience the newness of it all along with her. (And while this certainly isn’t the only reason why a lot of younger women want older men, it’s certainly a significant one.)


Pitfall #3: What you want today may not be what you wanted yesterday

Most relationships begin with at least a few shared goals, often involving marriage, children, travel, and whether to buy a house. But no matter how compatible you may be early on, it’s quite possible that with time your goals and preferences will change, until one day you find yourself sitting at the breakfast table across from a stranger. What happened to the man or woman you married so many years ago? It’s hard to accept, but there are no guarantees that the person you settle down with in your twenties will be the same person years down the line. Likewise, if you’re already in mid-life and looking for someone new, your prospective dating pool is probably at least as set in their ways as you are. They probably know exactly what they want in their immediate future, or they have it already so there are fewer mutual goals for you to strive toward. It can be easy to feel like you’re a sidekick instead of a partner if the person you’re dating has already met all their milestones.

Perk #3: There’s more room for growth and compromise

There are a lot of stereotypes about younger women for older men. Probably the most insidious is the idea that they’re just gold-diggers looking to trade their youth and beauty for money and stability. But if you look past the clichés, you’ll find that the majority of women who like older men are in it for more serious reasons. Many young women are at least as ambitious as their male counterparts: They want to establish profitable careers, see the world, own property, and start a family (though not necessarily in that order). So if you’re a man in mid-life who realizes his priorities and goals have changed over the years, the likelihood is high that you’ll be able to find a partner with compatible interests just by adjusting the age bracket you’re searching in. Younger women want older men for many of the same reasons older men want younger women: because they stand to offer experiences that your peers simply can’t.


Are you in an age gap relationship? Would you like to share your experiences of dating somebody much younger? If so, leave us a comment and tell us what you love about having a younger partner!


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