Ladies, I have come to a startling realization. It has been creeping up on me for some time but in the past couple weeks it’s been smacking me between the eyes on a fairly regular basis and now I can no longer ignore it: there are some hot men out there who are too young for me.
I turned 34 earlier this month, and I sure as hell don’t feel old or matronly. I’m all about dating, and I cast a wide net. But it definitely seems that this harpy is not destined for cougardom.
Case in point: This past weekend I was at a garden party in rural England. The weather was unsually warm and sunny, the flowers were flowering, the Pimms was pimming, and I was entertaining some of the guests with my brash American-ness. One of them was a twentysomething who bore a striking resemblance to David Beckham. Seriously, I had to try hard not to stare or lick my lips when he went by. When he came over and offered me–I’m not kidding here–a sausage roll, I nearly had to get out the smelling salts. He seemed eager to talk, so we chatted for a few minutes and I learned that he was on half-term break from his third year at uni, which meant that he was at most 22, but probably closer to 20. On hearing that, despite his sporty deliciousness and cute accent, I could feel my estrogen ebbing back to normal levels. Had he been in his late 20s, maybe I would have turned on the seduction vibes. But guys that age just don’t interest me.
Y’all know I’m not above a bit of wanderlusting, and I’m sorry if I’ve disappointed you by not snapping up that sweet Becks look-alike. The thing is, I mostly find younger guys boring. All those cliches about girls maturing faster than boys are generally true, and they hold true for some time into adulthood. A 25 year old male just seems so…young…to me. Conversation can be hard work with them. They don’t have much life experience, they don’t have much experience with women or relationships, and many of them are wrapped up in their own narcissistic little cloud of Dudely Privilege.
Moreover, as I recall from my own early years, guys in their early twenties–and even up into their late twenties–are fairly lousy in the sack. Not enough hands-on experience, as it were. So as fling material, they’re not all that tempting either, at least, not to me. Madonna, when asked about her predilection for very young men, once said: “They don’t know what they’re doing, but they can do it all night long.” I don’t know about you, ladies, but marathon sex with a dude who doesn’t know what he’s doing does not appeal AT ALL (and talk about your fast track to a UTI…). Of course, Madonna and I are generally not kindred spirits when it comes to men or pretty much anything else (although I do think Guy Ritchie has a certain dirty charm).
Since I turned 30, I’ve had the chance to date, or just to shtup, guys in their early to mid-twenties, and each time, I’ve politely said “no, thank you”, for all the reasons stated above. This is one of the few issues where I realize how despite all my assertions that women should have the same societal privileges as men, I am unable to walk that walk.
Older men love younger women (and I should know). It has ever been thus, mainly for cultural reasons of money, power and Patriarchy. Now that women are wealthier and more powerful, they’re more often the December in May/December romances. I don’t slag women who want to date younger men–if that’s what works for them, great. If men are entitled, then so, in theory, are we. But the older I get, the more I’m realizing that as privileged as I am, much younger men simply don’t hold much allure for me. I think it’s yet another of the ways that despite the gains of feminism, even when I’m an old girl, I’ll never be be one of the old boys.