Yeah buddy. Let's do this. Not too long ago, while in an interview, someone asked me if, due to my age and because I've never been married before, would I be open to dating or marrying a younger man. While I personally think that what qualifies as being any real significant age difference is a guy who is more than five years younger than I (or you) and since I've never done that before, I had to give the question some real thought. The main reason is because I know a lot of people, both in my family and out, who have done this and boy — has it been quite the roller coaster ride.
So, let's explore. When it comes to dating a man who is more than five years your junior, like most things in life, there are highs and potential lows; especially if you want to go the distance. And since I'm all about an ounce of prevention being worth far more than a pound of cure, there's no time like the present to get real — about both.
PRO #1 of Dating a Younger Man: So Much Is Fresh, New and Exciting
If there is a man who happens to be tiptoeing in and reading this, please know that I mean absolutely no disrespect when it comes to the comparison that I'm about to make. That said, what's one of the most fun things about watching a newborn baby grow up? Everything is new to them which makes it enjoyable for us to witness. Along these same lines, when you've had a few years up on someone, there's a really good chance that there are some "been there, done that" experiences that you've had that they haven't yet.
Still, to go through those things all over again while seeing it through their eyes, that can be fresh, new, and exciting. At the same time, because younger people oftentimes like to take more risks, they may be able to convince you to try things that you would've never considered — or thought yourself out of — had they not been in your life to make the recommendation. And that can make living the current season of your life super exhilarating.
PRO #2 of Dating a Younger Man: There’s a Great Chance Your Libidos Will Be in Sync
I'm pretty sure you've heard somewhere that a part of the reason why a lot of older women and younger men "vibe" so well is because their sexual peaks gel together, extraordinarily so. While it has been reported that a lot of men peak in their 20s as we peak in our 40s, there is also data to support that many men get their "second run" in their 50s, so to say that you should be with a younger guy because the sex is automatically going to be better isn't necessarily the case. Honestly, as a marriage life coach and doula, what I've observed about the sexual compatibility of older women and younger men is multifaceted.
For one thing, once a woman has hit menopause (check out "Sex And Menopause. What You Should Know."), if there's one thing that she doesn't have to worry about, it's getting pregnant which can cause her to relax in sex a whole lot more (you'd be AMAZED by how many men have told me that the sex got so much better once their partner knew they couldn't get pregnant again under any conditions). Secondly, a lot of times younger folks are still trying to figure out what works for them and what doesn't, so they may be more open to trying "unconventional things"; when you pair that up with the experience of an older partner, it can really cause the sex to go totally off of the charts.
Third, a lot of younger guys have higher testosterone levels, so while older men may be able to "love you down" well the first round or two, after that, they might be ready to call it a night while younger ones can oftentimes be like energizer bunnies. So yeah, if you feel like you've got your second wind and you're in your late 40s-50s, this can definitely be a solid reason to consider hooking up with someone who is younger than you are.
PRO #3 of Dating a Younger Man: Younger Men Tend to Me More “Flexible”
On the heels of what I just said, while it might seem like I'm talking about sex, I'm actually talking about how much younger men tend to be less set in their ways than older men and ourselves. Even if you're 50 and you're dating someone who's 30, while he is still a grown-ass man, you've got 20 more years of experience and came-to-the-conclusion resolves than he does which means he's still probably more willing to compromise than a man who is the same age as you may be. Plus, since no relationship really works or lasts without flexibility, dating a younger man could help you to go the distance with someone else while also teaching you to be a little less "set in your ways" (or dare I say it…stubborn).
PRO #4 of Dating a Younger Man: Less Years (Usually) Means Less “Baggage”
I'm not sure why the word "baggage" triggers so many people because, if you're human, you have some. And yes, the more years that you've been on this planet, the more baggage you've probably got. That's why I don't get people who have a hard time (sometimes to the point of being patronizing and condescending as all get out) with getting involved with people who haven't slept with a lot of folks or dated a ton of people. Although we live in a culture that seems to jeer at innocence and inexperience, I personally find a lot of it to be quite refreshing. If you're someone who can help a younger man to learn more about love, to see the world through another set of experienced eyes, or to consider other possibilities — what's wrong with that?
If you end up casually dating a younger man, it evolves into something serious and he's never been in something as significant before — what's wrong with that? If until you, he's never gotten so many stamps on his passport or knew that intimacy could be the way that he's had it with you — what's wrong with that? While a benefit to having a lot of life experience could be wisdom (wisdom isn't automatic; it's a choice), a benefit to not having much at all is that you're a clean(er) slate that is willing to be less (potentially) jaded and cynical. For the life of me, I don't know how this isn't a huge plus. I really and truly don't.
CON #1 of Dating a Younger Man: You’re in Different Seasons/Stages of Your Life
Recently, while channel surfing, I stopped at a particular reality show and then got super triggered because it hit a little too close to home. A woman, who is currently dating a younger man, was trying to convince him to help her to raise her young daughter while also trying to convince him to not want to have any kids of his own because she has already tied her tubes and doesn't want any more kids. While folks have the right to…want what they want, I'm not sure there are too many better examples of what entitled actually looks like and I was triggered because I know someone who is just like this — wanted a man to help her with her two children yet couldn't give him any and still tried to make it look like a test of his love should be to marry her anyway. Selfish, selfish, selfish.
When you're out here casually dating a younger man, stuff like this isn't that big of a deal. Oh, but when you're considering a long-term commitment, discussing that an age gap can point to being at very different seasons and stages of life are extremely relevant. And when it comes to love, something that isn't discussed, nearly enough, is sometimes you've got to love someone else enough to let them go, so that they can be with someone who can meet the needs that they have — the needs that you don't want to meet, no matter how much you want to be with them.
Yes, being an older woman means you need to be grown about ish. Please make sure that you are.
CON #2 of Dating a Younger Man: It Can Be a Challenge to Not Emasculate Him
I have a theory and I believe I've shared it before on this platform — the reason why so many people claim to love their kids more than their spouse is that they can control their children. Their spouse? Not so much. As far as being controlling goes, there are exceptions to this rule which is why I once wrote "Are You His Partner Or His Second Mama?" on here. Unfortunately, some people think that a part of their job in a romantic relationship is to boss people around and act like a second parent when trying to change a person should never be the objective (check out "The Right Relationship IMPROVES Not CHANGES You").
If you're with a younger man, you have to be careful to still see him as a man and to honor him as such because just like you would feel some type of way if he treated you like an "old lady", he has every right to be offended if you treat him like he's a little boy.
Oh, and if the first thing that comes to your mind is "If he doesn't want to be treated like one, he shouldn't act like one," that's the first clue that you probably need to date someone older. People who are comfortable with being condescending are problematic on so many levels and if his actions have you feeling justified in degrading him, you don't need to be seeing him anyway (if you feel otherwise, reflect again over the whole control thing).
CON #3 of Dating a Younger Man: You May Be Dismissive of His Long-Term Plans
In another article that I wrote for here, I mentioned how one of my favorite movies isPrime (Meryl Streep, Uma Thurman, Bryan Greenberg). In it, Uma was dating someone, I believe they were 10 years apart. Something that I really liked about the film is that she clearly came along to encourage him to pursue his life's passion for painting; he might not have without her presence in that season of his life. At the same time, she was entering the age where it gets harder for women to conceive while he was just starting to connect the dots on what he wanted his career path to look like. And while he was willing to "give her a baby," he wasn't doing it because he was at a point in his life where he wanted to be a father; he simply cared for her and didn't want to lose her. Wisdom teaches that, while sweet and endearing, that reason simply isn't good enough.
My point? Suppose Uma's character had been so selfish that she didn't care. And then he wouldn't be able to paint full-time because he would need to figure out how to be a parent and provide for another person? That could've hindered him from fulfilling his path and purpose. Oftentimes, when dating someone younger, we can be tempted to overlook stuff like this. That's why, my two cents would be, that in the beginning stages of a relationship with someone younger if you see that it really could be heading somewhere, ask him what his five and 10-year plans look like. Then be really serious about if in being with you there is room for compromise or he would have to surrender more than he should in the long run. Because if it's Door B, I'll just say that I have listened to far too many men who have harbored resentment because their partner required them to put their dreams on the backburner, indefinitely, in order to be with them. Rarely does that work in anyone's favor. Trust me.
CON #4 of Dating a Younger Man: Maturity and Stability Aren’t Always or Necessarily Their Strong Suit
Some of y'all and this disdain for video games, boy (LOL). If more folks knew the benefits that come with playing them (not obsessively but playing them nonetheless), you might be more encouraging of your partner's excitement over them. Video games reduce stress, help to boost memory, can assist with problem-solving and so much more. That's why, one of my running jokes with some of my wife clients is, "You better let your husband play that game. He could be figuring out how to pay the rent while he's doing it." Where am I going with all of this? When I speak of a potential con of dating a younger man is dealing with his instability and/or immaturity, I'm not referring to stereotypical things. I'm talking about the fact that purely a lack of time could result in him not being mentally and emotionally where you are.
Case in point. I know a wife who married someone almost eight years younger than her. For years, she was constantly complaining about how he wasn't a good budgeter; how he needed to "grow up" in that area. Finally, one day I asked her what she was like with money at his age. As she went on about overdraft fees and paying bills late, she finally paused because she caught where I was coming from. How is it that she should be given time to "get herself together" while he shouldn't?
While a younger person dating someone older can oftentimes influence them to "grow up faster" in some ways, it really needs to be up to them, whether or not they want to do that instead of the older person constantly nagging, berating, or denouncing the person they are with for being what is obvious — younger than they are. Can we all bring some "ah-ha moments" and life hacks to others? Sure. But should we be mad that someone acts younger when they are younger? I mean, pardon the pun but that doesn't sound super mature…now does it?
This is the kind of topic that could go on for days. For now, I just wanted to drop a few things to think about should you be seriously contemplating a more-than-casual experience with a younger man. Because, as with everything in this world, it's got some good points and some things to consider long and hard. Please make sure that you do. For his sake (and time) as well as your own. Feel me? Somehow, I know that you do.
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