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I find that the women I am attracted to are almost always younger than I am. Sometimes considerably so.
And that really doesn't bother me all that much. Some of my friends have pointed out to me that I am "old enough to be her father" in one case. And I am. I think I'm actually the same age as her mother.
But I am so very much not my age. Guys that are my physical age have wrinkly skin and play golf. My skin is smooth, and I play mini-golf. I play computer games, and I read science fiction, and I like Stargate SG-1 and Buffy.
I feel like I'm in my early 30's. Really, I got my degrees in 1990 and entered the workforce in '91, so that would make me around 35-36 in career years. That kind of excludes the career that I already had before college.

I just don't think about my chronological age unless I have to. Like when I start considering dating. Should I make age a consideration? Should I worry that a woman that I find attractive may be 20 years younger than me? Or should I just go with her character and the things I like about her and not make a problem where one may not exist?

If there is a problem with age differences, how much of an age difference is appropriate? Is it measured as a percentage of your chronological age? Some span? How far away do you get before it's "just plain wrong"?

(Okay, this was actually triggered by the news story this morning about the woman teacher who had a child by one of her students (actually I think it's 2 children now) getting out of prison after a seven-year sentence. She's 42, he's 21. They are looking to get married now, and the comments from the radio show were disparaging to say the least.)

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
wiredferret
Aug. 4th, 2004 09:24 am (UTC)
I think life-place matters immensely. More than age. It's just that they tend to correlate, so people get confused. I have had several relationships end because life-place/life-goal differences.

I am pretty settled, with family, and comfort, and routines. I like it that way. Wild and spontaneous people tend to chafe at it.
theatre_nerd
Aug. 4th, 2004 09:37 am (UTC)
I don't know.
J and I are a week apart. My parents are 11 years apart. You need to go with your gut. If the two of you feel it is the right thing to do, then no one else really matters.
eldogo
Aug. 4th, 2004 09:55 am (UTC)
I think about this all the time. I agree that "place in life" is more important than chronological age, but it's hard to convince the world at large of that. It's easier just to dismiss it as lust, and get a good self-riteousness buzz off of it.

Personally, I feel I'm mentally/spiritually/emotionally more like someone in their mid-20s than someone who is almost 39. I had a very late start on these things. Most women who are "age appropriate" already have established careers, social networks, and kids who are teenaged. I can't slot myself into a life like that without feeling pathetic. I need someone at my "just barely figuring this out" level. That's at least as strong a part of attraction as looks. Or almost so.
twilight_ashes
Aug. 4th, 2004 10:08 am (UTC)
No matter how you want to look at it, chronological age is a factor. I personally don't see a problem with dating someone 20 years older or younger than yourself, but you have to keep in mind that the decades you grew up in were different times. And that can cause issues. Not to mention the fact of life expereinces being different.

Honestly, as long as both people love and care about each other a lot and aren't using the age thing as an excuse for something else ("I'm going through a midlife crisis, so I want to date a hot 21 year old." or "This guy's got a decent job and has more money than guys my age do!" etc.) there's not problem with it.

Of course, there are a few cases where I think the older person in the relationship needs to give the younger one a chance to grow....They can still admit to liking the younger one and tell them they're interested in persuing a relationship, but they should give them a few more years to live their life and see what they want out of it.
magicmarmot
Aug. 4th, 2004 06:01 pm (UTC)
I do worry about the midlife crisis thing. I mean all I need is a shiny new bright red sports car, and I'd be in.

This whole relationship thing is complicated.
windelina
Aug. 4th, 2004 10:08 am (UTC)
Age - whatever! Of course, I would say that. *grin*
If the person you are with isn't creeped out by any age difference, then the rest of the world can go fuck itself.

As long as the relationship is good and happy and healthy for all involved, who really cares?

As for the teacher lady - I'm creeped out and disparaging because they started having sex when he was in SIXTH GRADE.
saveau
Aug. 4th, 2004 11:03 am (UTC)
Age matters...
... to a degree that can vary from person to person. "Young enought to be my child" is an uncrossable line for me. Period. This has caused a couple of nineteen year-old girls to get really pouty in the last year or so; so be it.
Beyond that kind of situation, I'm reminded of the words of Indiana Jones: "It's not the years, it's the mileage." Tara is eight years younger than me, and that's no big deal, especially since she's got at least as much "mileage" as I do.
So maybe that's the key. Striking the right balance between chronological age and experiential age, or something...
jmanna
Aug. 4th, 2004 04:22 pm (UTC)
My father used to joke that my boyfriends kept getting older and by the time I'd marry the groom would get the senior discount. My first date was with a 25 year old when I was 19 but it seemed completely natural to me. The age difference has flucuated but nothing dramtic. I usually end up finding out a guy's age after the fact rather then right away as some kind of factor of attraction.

I'm now hitting that cusp of 'young' to 'older' in a lot of people's eyes. I still feel like a 20 year old in responsibility and such. I often get mistaken for much younger then I am because of my demeanor. Younger guys are attracted to me but the guys I'm attracted to are usually older.

Honestly, I think it all rinses out in the wash once you hit 23. Though I admit I'd want to soundly beat any 40 year old that went any where near my friend's 19 year old daughter. But mostly because relationship-wise she's very immature and I'd asume the guy is using her.

Like anything having to do with attraction and relationships, it's all up to personal preferance.
scarletdemon
Aug. 4th, 2004 04:48 pm (UTC)
I'm 46 but I'm told I don't look it. My husband is 44.

It shouldn't matter but I think an older woman is going to treat you better than some young slip of a girl ;-).
paketto
Aug. 4th, 2004 04:55 pm (UTC)
I saw your post in the underwear day drive by sotik. I have a friend, no, really I do. She was 18 years younger than her husband. I expressed my reservations about the relationship and they were based on him being a tyrannical asshole and not his age. She went ahead and got married. So after seven years they are separated. She is 33 so he must be 51. I had a co-worker who was 43 and he marred an 18 year old girl. She literally turned 18 on her wedding day. He was a sick bastard. I recall she was one of his son's girlfriends friends.

Just make sure she's legal and be prepared to get hissed and spat at from time to time.
badinagevim
Aug. 5th, 2004 03:24 am (UTC)
age differences
I think age differences are based on where you are now in your own personal growth.

My last partner and I were together ten years, and there was a twenty year difference. I met him at twenty and he was forty. However, I was older emotionally from growing up the way I did. And, I was comfortable with the difference.

My current beau is 38 and I am 32. We are closer in chronilogical age. And, I think part of the reason we are together is that I began to feel overwhelmed by all the 'things I've never done' type syndrome.

I believe that in both relationships, part of the draw has been that my partner and I are close to one another in our emotional situations. My current partner is looking at the things he's never had up until now and so am I.

I think that is a better way to work on a relationship than a simple chronological rule.

my two cents...
Vim
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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