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What are the challenges to going out with someone significantly younger?
By Laurel House
You find yourself divorced and back on the market after years of a marriage that just wasn't right. You're taking better care of yourself, feeling amazing and suddenly find a younger crowd is now paying more attention to you than ever before.
Just because you are attracted to younger women doesn’t necessarily deem you a sugar daddy or sleazy guy. Just because you are attracted to younger men doesn’t automatically brand you a cougar looking for some fun.
So, why not try dating younger?
We'll, after the initial novelty wears off and you realize bragging to your friends is just silly, there are still a few roadblocks between you and a successful relationship.
Roadblock #1: You could be their parent.
Sure, it's a little weird at first, but even more so when you flip your perspective and imagine one of your high school acquaintances dating your child. It's a tough scenario from any point of view and can be difficult to move past.
Roadblock #2: Can you connect?
Sure, there's an initial connection and attraction based on the age difference, but is it more like the teacher/ student phenomenon? After a short period you may find a deeper, more intellectual connection to be a rarity. If it is there, make sure it's not like a vacuum connection, where you provide the content and they suck it up. Remember not to confuse the feeling of validity with attraction.
Roadblock #3: You question their motives…
Are they really interested in YOU as a person, or do they see you as a means to bypass those difficult middle years? I'm not saying everyone's a gold digger but I would be weary of a one way connection intellectually AND financially. Make sure their intentions are noble and they enjoy WHO you are and not WHAT you can provide.
There can be true love matches between men and women with unmatched ages.
But that doesn’t mean it won’t sometimes be awkward or frustrating. If you are recently out of a long marriage and returning to the dating scene, you very well feel confused, overwhelmed, and scared, in addition to possibly feeling unburdened and excited!
But being married is also like being frozen in time when it comes to dating. 15 or 20 years ago, when you were 30, you were attracted to people your age - 30. Your spouse aged right along with you, and you didn’t really notice their changing, sagging, widening bodies evolve through the years. But now at 45, 50, 55, or 60, you still might find that you are attracted to those same 30 year olds, in part because that’s what dating is to you.
You also want to have fun again! You want to laugh, feel young again, and maybe even do stupid things just because you are finally free to do whatever you want!
Even though you may no longer be of childbearing age, biologically we are attracted to partners who can produce a healthy heir. It’s not a choice, it’s written in our DNA. Someone who is younger has a higher probability of actualizing that possibility, even if you have no desire to have more or any children.
So you go for someone younger.
And that relationship could work IF you are energetically matched, you are being honest with your needs and wants in a relationship, and you have similar relationship goals, core values, and interests.
It can get awkward when you are in it for different reasons, your intellectual capacities clash, or you are marred by the social stigma of the older/younger relationship. Some people may be older in years, but youthful in health and spirit. Some people may be younger in years, but more mature in interests and spirit.
But there is one inescapable fact:
If there is a significant age difference and you are looking to put a “till death” commitment on the relationship, regardless of how healthy the older of the two is, the younger is making a sacrifice of having a healthy and spry, or even a living partner later in life- unless of course you die and they decide to have a second wind with another spouse. Maybe a younger one next time…
In the end it's just like any other relationship. Once the newness wears off and you've wiped your lenses clear, ask yourself this one imperative question: “Can this person fulfill my needs in a relationship or just my wants?”
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