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Older Women Dating Younger Men: Doomed from the Start or Happily Ever After in Cougarville?

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If you’re an older woman getting back in the dating game, it can be daunting to decide if someone is the right age for you. And more often than not, the question is, “Is he too young for me?”

If you’re an older woman dating a younger man, is it doomed from the start or will you be happily ever after?

There are a few things at play here. It’s very possible that an older woman dating a younger man can have a lasting relationship and live happily ever after in Cougarville! If you’re in your forties and feel like you have a young soul and body, it might be easy as pie for you to attract a guy in his mid- or late twenties (or thirties!), and to that we say “Good for you!” We at Dating with Dignity aren’t “age-ists!” However, if you’re looking for a long-term relationship, you may want to proceed with caution. (And not for the reasons you may think).

Here’s why:

An older woman does pose an alluring challenge for a younger man. Not only is she at her most confident, but this woman has got it together. She supports herself and is very in touch with her needs. Some younger men feel like they can learn from her and that she has enough life experience for both of them. Older women tend to exude a more “together” vibe, seeming to be more in tune with her needs (physical or otherwise), which makes her very attractive to younger men.

The problem, however, can be that an older woman is simply a challenge for the younger man. And since it’s likely he’s in a different stage of his life (just beginning to establish his career, getting to know himself, and possibly not yet ready to make a long-term commitment) and you’re beyond that point, it can be a dealbreaker for a potential relationship.

Ultimately, in this scenario, being younger impacts his values. And since we believe a match made in heaven is based on common values, you may be setting yourself up to be in a mismatch from the get-go.

However, as long as you’re both open and honest with each other and have discussed your needs, wants, expectations and values…then go for it. This is EXTREMELY important and will make or break where your relationship is headed.

Some other potential issues that can arise if an older woman is dating a younger man:

There’s a chance you’ll experience some insecurities or anxiety about whether a younger guy will stray, but that can only happen if you haven’t mastered your own self-confidence that a guy is with you for the right reason. If you’re confident that he loves you for a host of reasons beyond your looks and the ego boost he gets from “landing” you as his woman, then it’s imperative you trust him and the relationship you’re building (which is true in any relationship, regardless of age).

Another challenge is that most women want to be in a relationship with an “Alpha Male.” If, however, as an older woman you have a more difficult time letting him take the alpha role, you may ultimately end up feeling like you’re the one who’s “in charge.” It’s imperative that you stay in your feminine, even if you’re more financially stable, have more life experience than him, and are dying to tell him what you would do if you were in his shoes.

In order for the relationship to thrive, you must find places in the relationship where you can be in your feminine. Ask him for help around the house, put him in charge of travel, let him cook you a special meal, and be comfortable in sharing your vulnerabilities with him. If you’re able to navigate gender roles and live in your SEXY Alpha FEMinine, the relationship can work for the long term.

Doom Indicators

If you’re a woman who feels stigmatized by the relationship, it’s likely headed in the wrong direction. December-May is always going to be looked at in a different light than May-December; so unless you can ignore others’ opinions about your relationship with a younger man, you’ll be out of luck.

If you’re a woman who has insecurity about aging (Okay, who doesn’t?) and it’s affecting your relationship because you’re constantly asking your man to validate your youth, it will be hard to pull off.

If you’re in a different stage of love than your guy and you haven’t communicated about it, you’ll need to do that.It’s important he be on the same page as you in terms of making a long-term commitment, having a family, and career goals.

Notes

Some studies have shown that if a wife is five or more years younger than her husband, they’re much more likely to avoid divorce. However, other studies have shown that divorce rates have absolutely nothing to do with age differences between men and women. This could be that often times older women dating younger men have already been married and decide to skip tying the knot again, so ask yourself what you’re looking for. If it’s a long-term relationship, just be open and honest with any man (younger OR older) and you can definitely find yourself happily ever after in Cougarville.

About the Author

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MARNI BATTISTA

Marni Battista is a certified professional dating and relationship expert specializing in helping high achieving women find love.
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