Friday, June 10, 2011

Fine Wine and Age Range in Dating

Written by Lauren K. of Love Kudos

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I have always expected men and women to be like fine wine, where we get better in time, with a peak of greatness in our 30's professionally, physically, and mentally. However, I have recently discovered that this is a false assumption that needs to be reconciled.

My parents, sister, and friends have all stated that I should be dating older men because they are more mature and know what they want. However, I can unequivocally say that age is a simply a number.  It is about your phase in life and what experiences you have encountered before you meet. 

I think it is extremely powerful and sexy when a man or a woman knows what they are looking for in a relationship and a lifestyle. Of course, plans are meant to be altered, but if a guy says to me in his 30's I am not sure if I want children, this really means to me, "I really don't want them, but if it should happen, I will deal with it." This is not exactly a great recipe for a marriage when the woman wants a family and someone who will share in the responsibilities of raising children with her. The same goes for a woman who says at 29, "I am not sure if I have the maternal instinct. I may not want children." I have met several divorced men in the past year that admitted the demise of their marriages was majorly attributed to their wives not wanting children.
"How can you not one of those?"
Several of my girlfriends ended up marrying men one to four years younger than them, and I can honestly say they are some of the strongest couples I know. These guys were all in their 20's when they met their wives. The guys were all smitten with the women when they met them and in spite of the age differences, did not retreat when things heated up in their relationships. So, I challenge the statistical formula of the guy needing to be older than the woman to make a sustainable, healthy marriage.

Men, more so than women, get comfortable in their routines, and are not a strict time line. Therefore, they can become more picky in time when choosing a mate. This principle or ideal does not work for women because we have science working against us.


I have dated several men in their mid-30's over the past year, two of which had major marital commitment issues. During the life cycle of a relationship, they get stuck in the "committed" relationship phase, and never manage to progress to the "marriage" phase. I normally would have taken it personally, but given their relationship histories, it seems evident that I was just another example to show them that marriage may not be something they want in their lives. I thought that men in their 30's were more self-assured, directed, and on the marriage track. I have now concluded it is all about the connection between two people and their phase in life.

It is just the way life is, so I have accepted it. However, I no longer want to limit my dating options to what society deems acceptable. I surrender to the connection and will no longer follow a formula for finding the perfect guy out there. This really draws back to an article Love Kudos commented on last year.
Often people say that we don't really know what we want out of life until we are 30, and although I do believe that is a valid statement for many, this can not be a doctrine that we all follow. I have friends that knew what they wanted to do professionally when they were 22 and others that only figured it out in their early 30's. It is about emotional maturity.

Ashton and Demi ...

I am not suggesting that cougars should prey on innocent men in their mid-20's and pull a Demi / Ashton situation. I am merely saying that perhaps we should open up our age ranges with our online dating profiles and read more about what they say, do, and not be locked into an age box in either direction. If you are a 25 year old male and previously had a search of 19 - 26 for women, perhaps you can increase that age range by a few years. I have been guilty of exercising age discrimination too, as well as have become a victim of it in the last few years. However, my new mantra is to look at the whole person before judging if they are ready for a relationship, marriage, children, and whatever life has to offer. 

I hope you will consider that too. Whether you find yourself to be the younger or the older person in a relationship, take into account whether your maturity levels match. You may find in life that a fifty year old and a thirty year old can be very similar in regard to their maturity level. This all depends on your life experiences, personal outlooks and goals. 


Thad said...

Of course there are some issues missing here:
1) In my dating experience (and that of many of my friends) I have noticed a lack of "negotiation". In that, if you expect a relationship to build and grow, it requires both parties to "negotiate" some common ground (i.e. don't leave pants in entryway, and other silly and serious points of contention). It happens on both sides, but men sometimes get to a point of refusing to change and some women refuse to push the point (but it can go either way, and by no ) which leaves a source of argument later, or a rationale for ending the relationship.

2) We can't fault a man who answers the wrong way to the "children" question, mainly because it usually gets sprung awkwardly and we usually feel uncomfortable with it based on circumstances. I answered incorrectly, though I did want children (and now have one). But that comes with the evolution of the relationship and following the negotiation over the years.

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Dating Chat Rooms said...

In my opinion, age is nothing but our own self-esteem, that's why I don't see any obstacles if a man of 20 marries a woman of 35 or vice versa. This is just a prejudice!

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