While older-man-younger-woman relationships have been the norm for generations, the reverse is just about getting normalised. Whereas until a few decades ago, these May-December relationships were considered to be outliers in the world of love, now many women are opting to date men younger than themselves. Susan Winter, co-author of the book Older Women, Younger Men: New Options for Love and Romance, says, “Older successful men are used to being in control of a woman, and that doesn’t sit well with modern women. Younger men have grown up with working women and have worked for female bosses, so they’re more likely to treat women equally.” Anecdotally, too, this seems to be one of the biggest reasons why women now want to be with younger men. They don’t have to be submissive and pander to the coy feminine stereotype in the relationship. But, like any dynamic, this too, comes with its disadvantages. There are some pros and cons of dating someone your junior.
Pros: Love that liberates…
He will make you feel young again! You are as young as the company you keep… being with a man who has less years on you will take you back to that time when you had fewer worries. His youthful energy will rub off on you, and he will bring adventure and spontaneity into your relationship in ways that an older man can’t.
He can bring in an element of innocent fun that a jaded older man can’t. He’s not as cynical as that older man who’s been through heartbreak. Or, even just life! The younger guy is fun, and up for all sorts of road trips, music concerts, and game nights that the older man may just be too exhausted or overworked for.
You will rage under the sheets. God’s biggest joke on love is that a man’s sexual appetite begins to dip right when a woman’s hits its peak. This won’t be a problem with a younger guy, who’s up for some sexy time whenever you want! Bonus point: He will also have more stamina, and can keep you going for hours, or at least multiple times a day!
He already respects and admires you! He knows you’ve lived your life, had your experiences, and you got shit handled. You don’t need to prove yourself to him, or fight to earn his admiration. He comes with it right from the start. Nor does he feel threatened by your independence, because he got into it knowing very well that you are your own person.
He’ll be more supportive of your ambitions. Younger men are brought up in a different world, surrounded by more examples of independent, ambitious women. Chances are, he won’t see your career dreams as a taint on your moral compass. In fact, he will support you because he wants a relationship where he is not the sole bearer of financial responsibilities.
Cons: New gaps to bridge
You may have different ideas of what a good relationship entails. Modern day dating can be complicated. If you belong to the old school of love, and he doesn’t, you may not agree on the definition of cheating, or what romance means. Heck, you may not even agree on what to call this thing you have!
He may not be ready to commit. While you may be all set to tie the knot, he may need a few years to get there. Rightly so. If this is something that comes up in your relationship, ask yourself a simple question: What’s more important to you? Solemnising a relationship, or being with this person, open to seeing where the two of you go?
He may not be financially stable yet. But, it shouldn’t really matter, should it? Except that you may have to either pay for those luxury international vacations, or hold them off for some time. But, hey, as long as one person in the relationship is financially stable, and the other isn’t in it for the money, then who cares who’s bringing home the bacon?
You risk mothering him. As tempting as it may seem, avoid throwing the age card at him when it suits you. Regardless of the age gap, you are not here to fix his life. You are here to be his partner – shoulder to shoulder!
Your timelines for having children may not match. Your biological clock may be ticking, but he might need some time before he can play dad. Again, you need to assess what’s more important – having a life with a husband and a child, or having a life with him.