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What You Must Know Before Dating an Older Man

Updated on January 02, 2017
Joined: 6 years agoFollowers: 240Articles: 29
Hollywood's unsuccessful love story: George Clooney with his younger girlfriend Stacy Keilber
Hollywood's unsuccessful love story: George Clooney with his younger girlfriend Stacy Keilber | Source

How Much Older Are We Talking?

We all remember when 27-year old Ashley Olsen made headlines for reportedly dating 47-year-old Bennett Miller, the director of Moneyball.

And, yes, I know some younger men date older women. Kyle Jones, a 31-year-old Pittsburgh guy, was in the news for having a relationship with 91-year-old great-grandmother, Marjorie McCool.

So I am not being sexist. However, this article is about younger women falling in love with older men.

And I don't mean a few years older. Traditionally, it has not just been customary but also advisable for girls to marry men who were a few years older - maybe by two to five years. There are biological as well as psychological reasons for this. For instance, girls enter puberty sooner, their bodies are ready to have children earlier, and they only remain fertile for a limited time period. Psychologically, they reach emotional maturity much sooner than men.

In fact, statistics prove that, on average, American men marry younger women.

A study* by Thomas V. Pollet, Sophia E. Pratt, Gracia Edwards and Gert Stulp, revealed that married women were 4.1 years younger than married men in the United States.

According to the same study, successful men featured on the Forbes 400 list married women seven years younger. In fact, the numbers get more interesting. When these super-rich men remarried, their subsequent partner was substantially younger, 22-years younger on average.

That's the kind of gap I am talking about.

Why Do Women Choose Older Men?

Financial gain seems to be the obvious answer, so I will get it out of the way straightaway.

Yes, money matters. Girls get a head-start by marrying older men, as it affords them a similar or better lifestyle than they were used to while living with their parents. After all, their parents would have secured a commendable standard of living in their middle age, and the girl would like to ensure that she gets similar comforts when she marries.

If she were to marry a man the same age or slightly younger, they both would be starting out together and would lead a life of struggle initially—at least before they can plant their feet firmly in their respective careers.

So, such an affair results in financial security.

There are other, more complex psychological reasons.

  • Just Like Daddy. As they say, a girl marries a guy that reminds her of her father. Girls are used to their father's protection and care. Such a caring and loving attitude is usually found in older men. Men her age typically (though not necessarily) are as mature or even less mature than herself and are not yet ready to take on the responsibility of a partner.
  • Social Acceptance. Girls want to grow up fast, and they feel all grown up with an older man who socializes with others his age.
  • Relatability. Finally, it is easier for younger girls to relate to them. In their early twenties, young girls are still trying to come to terms with their identity. They are still dealing with their emotions. They need a strong anchor, and a mature man can provide that emotional stability.

What's Causing This Trend?

Online dating sites have made it easier for women to find men of all varieties—single, divorced, rich, and even married men. In fact, many are full of married men pretending to be single or divorced. Because such websites attract more men than women, they often offer women incentives such as free registration and discretion. All of this makes it easier for younger women to meet and date younger men.

What You Must Know Before Dating an Older Man

You must consider the following differences before marrying or even getting into a relationship with an older man.

  1. Physical: He will be less vigorous than your younger self.
  2. Emotional: His emotional needs will differ from yours simply because he is in a different stage of life.
  3. Social: Navigating between the various social circles, including family and friends, can be challenging.

Because of this, I believe it is a terrible idea for young girls to fall in love with older men.

Why It's a Bad Idea

Finally, let's get into some of the problems that a couple may face when the guy is much older.

To get an idea of the possible challenges, you only have to read the experiences of women who have married old men. These tragic stories are all over the internet.

So, I will be very blunt in the list below.

  1. If you are having an affair with such a man, physical compatibility could be an issue. You will be in the prime of your life, and he'll be rapidly approaching the end of his. While you are spending hours in the hospital because he has fallen ill, your friends will be sharing stories about their baby showers and their children's sports activities.
  2. If he is married, then you will be his second choice. His wife and his children will always be his top priority. Which is why he is still married and you are his mistress.
  3. If he can cheat on his wife with you, he would cheat on you with an even younger girl.
  4. If you wish to start a family, there are emotional and physical barriers. An older man's sperm usually cannot produce healthy babies. Physically he may not be able to do all the activities with your child that are expected of a father. Emotionally, he may not be ready to create competition for his kids from his previous first marriage.

Cary Grant paired with much younger Audrey Hepburn in Charade 2
Cary Grant paired with much younger Audrey Hepburn in Charade 2 | Source

How to Make the Relationship Work

The benefits of dating an older man are very few, and most fathers would have a hard time if their daughters began to date one. To be fair, some couples have successfully lived together despite the age difference.

Here are some tips to make your marriage work:

  1. Communicate: This is the number one game-changer in all relationships. Despite all your differences, it is the willingness to talk that keeps the flame burning bright. Talk to him, listen to him, share ideas. Discuss things you like and dislike. Talk about your future plans. That's one good thing about marrying an older man—he listens better than a younger one. Read a lot so that you can discuss politics, entertainment, and sports. That brings me to my next point.
  2. Share common interests: You must watch sports with him, if that's what he likes—and find it genuinely interesting. I know it's a stereotype that men like sports. Most do. Develop an interest in whatever it is that he likes. Also, get him to do the same for what you love to do. Doing things together improves communication, which was my previous point. However, my next point is going to contradict this one.
  3. Give each other space: Yes, you should find things to do together. But also spend time apart so that each of you can do the things the other doesn't like on your own. There's no point trying to force your man to go shopping with you, for example. Let him catch up with a buddy over a beer while you go and spend his money. You will need to find the right balance between doing things together and being independent.

Laura shares good tips

Will You Date An Older Man?

If given a choice, would you like to have an affair with an older man?

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In summary:

  1. Women marry older men for financial, psychological and social needs.
  2. There are many pitfalls to watch out for when dating an older man.
  3. Overall, it's not a good idea to marry someone who is much older, but you can make things work by following the tips mentioned in this article.

What do you think? Do you have first-hand experience with an older man? Or do you know someone who does?

Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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    • profile image

      Mini Em 2 years ago

      The article is so helpful. Yet, the decision of marrying a 24 years older man is suffocating me! I can't imagine myself getting married of a 51 yrs man while I'm still 26!!!! In my society, divorced women doesn't have a variety of options; like me. Getting divorced in a young age made life harder; I stopped dating, I refused socializing, until I realized that I have been living in a cocoon that I have created. I am a mess right now. Marriages are fixed in my society. I was once fooled and married a man I never knew before (because this is how things are here) but I had a say in this marriage ( Thank God). Yet, I were meant to marry him for a reason; lesson learned. Thinking of starting the whole process all over again, is hard to think of. Again, thank for the points u mentioned, really really helpful!

    • profile image

      Rebecca T 2 years ago

      I got married young to the man I thought I would spend the rest of my life with. We were both 21 and had been together for five years. After just over two years of marriage he out of the blue decided I was no longer the one for him. I was devastated. I work long hours and away from home a lot which was his reason for leaving. Fortunately we didn't have children and I have my own career. Not long after we separated a man I work with "John" was very kind to me. We had worked together for three years and although I always found him attractive I had never considered him. One night when we both got off early we decided to meet up. Everything was effortless the conversation never stalled, I never felt uncomfortable. Quite the opposite, I felt exhilarated. Not long after we began seeing each other physically. The sex was the best I've ever experienced. I've never felt love like I do with John. Unfortunately he's 20 years older then I am and stuck in an unhappy marriage. I feel terrible sleeping with a married man, but I suppose you can't help who you fall in love with. I don't think age should be a barrier unless you're looking for the wrong things out of a relationship. If you want an older man because he make your whole and happy go for it. If it's for his money you should reevaluate your priorities.

    • profile image

      Jess 2 years ago

      I have been in a relationship with a man 25 years my senior. As someone who has had her fair share of terrible exes, I was amazed how infatuated I was with him at first. Everything just seemed to click. Now we have a home, a family, and my parents love him, too (although he's old enough to be my father). Years later, I can say it was the best decision of my life. But please make that decision with your heart, not your wallet.

    • profile image

      2 years ago

      My fiancé is 15 years older than me (I'm 20, he is 35) and none of the issues you put in the "cons" list apply to us. We seem to match in ever way, even physically. He's still plenty young enough to have children, he has a good job, and he's never been married. he's had his fair share of long term relationships, though, so I'm lucky to be with someone who knows what they're doing in a relationship and can recognize why his others failed. Even after meeting online in a video game, crossing literally the entire world, and the age difference, we get on amazingly and we both feel that we're perfect for each other. We plan to marry, and begin to save up more money and have a child together. We share many of the same viewpoints and the age is really not a factor to either of us, it seems to matter more to other people actually.

    • profile image

      Daniella 2 years ago

      My husband of 7 years is 61 and I am 37, we have a healthy 5 year old boy. We give each other space and we share a lot of interests. This is truly the healthiest relationship I have ever had.

    • profile image

      Danielle 24 months ago

      I am 27 and my boyfriend is 50. I was very slow to let him in my life because I was so concerned with the age difference and the inevitable scrutiny from others. There was no denying our chemistry and once I let him in, I discovered a whole new world of love I never imagined even existed. We have been getting to know each other for a little over a year, and I have grown and become better thanks for his support. He is a kid at heart, and I have an old soul. He keeps me interested and inspired, and I hope I do the same for him. I have never developed a specific type, especially toward older men, but a lust for excitement and connection. I never expected to fall in love with a man 3 years younger than my father, but there is no going back. He listens, forgives, does not judge... all the things I have always valued. We have so much fun together, and I can't imagine ever growing bored of this one. I know he wont live forever, and I thankful each day to enjoy time with my Silver Fox ;)

    • profile image

      Tanya 21 months ago

      I am 40years old, single with no child, presently in love with a 73years old married man. Though it took me some years to give in but honestly, I don't have any regret that I did.

      He said to me he has just found his soul mate. I have never experience love this way either, he appreciate everything about me.

    • profile image

      Andi 21 months ago

      I am 21 currently in love with a man 58 years my senior,he is so freakin awesome! He is so sweet ,and funny,he's simple and country, kinda like me.He calls me his kindred spirit,and we r so close .He is so beautiful.

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      janny 21 months ago

      I am 21 years and my husband is 60 to 61 this year but he is the sweetest man i have ever seen. Sweeter than young men when it come to be bed

      Young men lie a lot .but my man take me to different countries when he is at work .i love him

    • profile image

      Janie 21 months ago

      This as crap. Your 3 reasons are crap. You left out the vital one I was looking for.. you just connect and fall for him as a person. I recently got involved with a man 14 years my senior. I don't want an older man, don't want his money, don't have daddy issues, no social needs. I just feel for him, we just flow, we just think the same, its just there. While you had a few good splashes in here, intentionally or not, your article comes across extremely degrading to women. Its all about what we need or get from it.. ignoring it might just have been all love and a lot of what you claim as what the woman wants is actually not important to some of us. Don't write anymore on this, you don't know s**t.

    • profile image

      ivan 21 months ago

      Yes, really bad writing on a sensitive issue

    • lyoness913 profile image

      Wendi Pembridge Skilling 21 months ago from Overland Park, KS

      I've been married twice and both men were (are) 8 years older. My present husband is 51 and he has no libido. I think if I could have done it differently I would have chose younger, LOL! Great hub- good points. :)

    • profile image

      lisa 20 months ago

      I am 24 and my partner in life is 65. We have been together for almost 6 years and He has been a great blessing in my life. He understands me in most things, and I understand him. The most difficult thing of dating an older man is that if you ever separate and you are my age, you will not feel the same with guys your age.

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      Tracy 16 months ago

      I am 46 my children are all adults . i am dating a 68 year young man. He is not married. I know what my future looks like. I will be there to help him to the bathroom and keep him clean because i love like that. We will all need help some day and that is a FACT

    • profile image

      Scott 13 months ago

      My fiance' is 22 yrs. my junior. I'm 54, she 32. She found and pursued me. I had an issue with the age difference at 1st, but now 6 months later, I don't even see it. She is not the 1st woman I spoke with of this age. All were from overseas, and all told me young men don't know how to treat a woman, and that is why they pursued older men. Women from overseas are taught to take care of their man, unlike American women. We have common interests, I have a young heart, she, an old soul, and we both feel we have found our soul mates. The author does bring up some valid points, but as someone earlier stated, she's not looking for me as a daddy figure, I don't have money. She wants a man to love and care for her. To provide stability and protection. It will work, but communication is the #1 thing that has to be addressed for the relationship to work.

    • profile image

      Dee 13 months ago

      You are absolutely right.

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      Jan 9 months ago

      What many people won't tell you is that even if a man is in good physical shape, after 50, many men loose their libido since their testosterone levels drop drastically. It's the same for women after menapause.

    • profile image

      Carmen sytes 8 months ago

      I am 35 he is 80 , a very good looking 80 year old who is healthy and fit

    • profile image

      Mat 3 months ago

      I am 20 , dating a man 18 years my senior. I really love him and he makes me very happy. The daddy issue is true to some extent, I feel protected and safe around him. The main issue at hand is convincing him that I am totally comfortable with the age gap. We plan on moving to Asia soon but I am still fond of Africa how do I convince him to stay in Africa?

    • profile image

      Too much age gap is not realistic or normal 7 weeks ago

      I think it is wrong for a 50 year old man past his prime to marry a 20 something girl who has barely started out in life. This is obviously about money and control for the girl most of the time anyways. That to me is weird. I am 46, and there is no way I would someone in their 20's. Think about it.

    • profile image

      Lisa 6 weeks ago

      Awful article and not true at all !

    • profile image

      Dulce 5 weeks ago

      I am 36, dating a 59yo man. I cared deeply for him but he doesn't want to get married again or have anymore children since his are all grown. Ladies, please take this into consideration of you are young & still want a family of your own. Also, I'm at my sexual prime & unfortunately he is not.

    • profile image

      Sar 3 weeks ago

      Twelve months ago..... I was incredibly lucky to be introduced to a man.. not just any man... he's funny, humble, engaging, interesting beyond belief man, and he flirted with me... (Later he did fessed up to doing some reconnaissance to check me out).

      It has been a wonderful journey, we're both blown away by our similarities in values, family experiences and how we connect; emotionally and intimately,. We have the most enjoyable and fulfilling relationship I've ever experienced. And he says the same

    • profile image

      Lilt 2 weeks ago

      Exactly over a month ago today, i met an older man online. He's 22yrs older than me but hey I'm not counting.

      He of course has a history 2 exes & amazing Children from both.

      He's the most genuine person I know, honest in all his ways and loves talking to me and making me feel special. We've only been Skyping so far & I can not wait to meet him for the 1st time in 3days. He's coming all the way to Africa, i mean that's enough commitment.

      Yes there's hurdles along our path but we know exactly how we feel about each other. He can still have a family and between us money is no factor and NO I don't need another daddy. After no luck with young men he was a real welcome change. And i am willing to make it work completely.

      All the way T&M

    • profile image

      MIKLUND 2 weeks ago

      My new partner (Lilt) just posted the above message about us, which came as a positive surprise to me. This motivated me to write a few lines on this site as well.

      Yes, she is indeed 22 years younger than me, and could be my daughter. On paper, we have very little in common. This is certainly a bit scary for both of us. We have received rather mixed comments from family members and friends. Most of them are a bit concerned.

      My oldest daughter (17 years of age) had already a chat with my new partner. She was surprisingly positive and happy for her dad.

      After having spent up to five hours per day on Skype together, I have to admit that I cannot wait to meet her in Johannesburg in three days. She has certainly swept me off my feet. I am so much looking forward to talking to her in person. Please let me clarify that this is not just about sex from either side.

      I am fully aware of my responsibility as the older person in the relationship, and I know how it may look for bystanders. Therefore, I will make sure that she is feeling comfortable with whatever happens between us in the future. She will be in the driver’s seat.

      I have not searched actively for a young person. Previous partners were around the same age (usually two years older than me). I have no intention to be a father figure, sugar daddy or a ticket to a potentially better life somewhere else. Finally, I am also not after a nurse or carer.

      We will decide together within about ten days how to move matters forward. I hope that we discover sufficient ground for a happy and long-lasting relationship as equal partners. In any case, I am sure that there is already sufficient potential for a life-long friendship.

      Watch the space!

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      LOUISE 13 days ago

      I do find many points in this article to be true. For 7 years I have been with someone 13 years my senior. We have 1 child together, who we adore more than anything but he wants no more cause of his age. He is only 40. I am devastated since I am so young and have so more life still in me. I will Tell my son to never get involved with a younger women no matter how tempting.

    • 101Ways2Life profile image
      Author

      101Ways2Life 10 days ago from Clean and Green New Zealand

      Hi MIKLUND, thank you for sharing your experience. You have articulated your situation well. I wish both of you the very best, and look forward to further updates from you. As you say, let's watch this space :)

    • profile image

      MIKLUND 3 hours ago

      Dear all,

      Here comes the update on the latest developments, which was kindly requested by the author (101Ways2Life) of this article.

      Finally, we met in South Africa. We have spent about ten days together. These were the best days of our adult life (comparable to spending the first week with a new baby or getting married according to MIKLUND). We were very honest, sweet, informative, gentleman/lady-like, loving and romantic. We have even spent Valentine's Day together!

      The week was absolutely amazing! Yes, it was not completely perfect as neither of us were pretending to the other. We were very honest with each other from the get go, which made everything simpler. The age difference was definitely not an issue at all. In fact, it worked well for us, as we matched mentally on many levels.

      To be honest, we do not match on paper, but we have grown to love each other deeply. We had a chance to see each other in our different fields of work, and we have helped each other.

      MIKLUND also got the chance to meet some family members and friends of Lilt. Everybody loved his friendliness and honesty.

      Yes, we still have some battles to fight in this relationship. It will not be easy at all, but we are both prepared to fight the battles side-by-side.

      We can honestly say that we have found the partner, each of us have been waiting for.

      Best wishes,

      Lilt and MIKLUND

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