Dating a man 10 years younger than me
And sometimes, they do; sometimes someone who is older really is more emotionally intelligent. Hell, we've even developed a terminology to describe people who look like adults on the outside, but are basically middle schoolers on the inside — that'd be that scourge of the dating world, the "man-child" or "woman-child."In my own mid-twenties, I dated a 30-year-old, expecting to find someone ready to get serious sheerly based on his age and professional accomplishments; instead, I found an immature trainwreck who made rude comments about my weight and cheated on me basically every time I was out of earshot.
Lots of women who've dated around have similar stories that prove that there's no concrete relationship between being older and actually acting like an adult.
Jesse wasn't my first dip into the younger dude pool — we connected after I'd had a handful of casual things with guys four or five years younger than me.
I'd just gotten out of a long-ish relationship with a guy who was fixated on achieving "appropriate life milestones" — marriage, kids, stable jobs — and the experience made me realize that I wasn't on the same page about that kind of thing as a lot of people my own age.
Which makes sense — in the course of 24 months, I transformed from a college senior who'd never lived on my own and subsisted primarily on bagels stolen from the school cafeteria to a financially independent adult who worked a serious job and subsisted primarily on bagels stolen from work.
I felt like I was racking up new life milestones every day, and couldn't imagine relating to anyone younger than me — and so I became fixated on dating older guys, because I thought it was the only way I could find someone who would be mature enough to make me happy.
In our culture, dating an older partner is often seen as a status symbol for younger women — we're often told that older partners will be more financially and emotionally stable, which is why being courted by an older partner is often seen as a compliment, a confirmation that you, indeed, have your act together and are desirable.
This is probably why heterosexual women's age preferences in partners tend to skew their own ages of higher (while heterosexual men's tend to skew younger).
The window of time when I was helping Jesse learn about credit reports and negotiating a salary was brief, while he continues to teach me new things about love and commitment every day (I know, barf).We're all aging, and life is too damned short to not date someone who's younger than you just because society has psyched you out about it.Want more of Bustle's Sex and Relationships coverage?In an interview in Shape, psychotherapist Robi Ludwig claimed that, “In some cases, a younger guy is developmentally in a different place...he’s not ready for all of the pressures and responsibilities that go along with a committed relationship because his emotional maturity is not fully developed yet.”Again, this is generalizing that conflates age with a specific set of romantic values — plenty of people of all ages aren't interested in serious relationships, and plenty of people of all ages are interested in serious relationships, too.
Ludwig isn't necessarily describing a younger guy; instead, she's describing a guy who isn't interested in a serious relationship, a kind of dude who comes in all ages.
The line of thinking that all younger guys are total scrubs dances around the fact that all older guys were once younger guys — and that younger guys will soon be older guys.