Is Age Just A Number?
Do men really give a damn about a 40 or 50-year-old woman dating a 30-year-old man? I don't seem to recall too many men crying when Cher was dating Tom Cruise who is 16 years younger than she is or Rob Camilletti who was 18 years her junior. When a 68 year old Joan Collins married 32 year old Percy Gibson, the men her age didn't exactly rally to protest their union either. There’s a posting on Yahoo “Shine” which asks the question what should we label an older man who dates younger women? The goal is to find an equivalent to the term “Cougar”.
The article infers there is a "double standard" at work here.
I suspect it was actually “younger women” who had a crush on the likes of Ashton Kutcher that created the label “Cougar” for women like Demi Moore.
She had “stolen one of theirs”.
It’s highly doubtful that 40-year-old men were sitting around disgruntled about this relationship so much that they labeled Demi a “Cougar” because she wouldn’t give them the time of day.
My guess is most 40 year old men have no problem finding women their own age and in many instances they're more interested in dating younger women.
Examining Other Labels…
“Sugar Daddy” also does not sound like a label a man would have created.
It sounds like a name created by a (young woman) to “justify” her relationship with an older man to her friends who may have been teasing her. It's also possible that her friends gave him that name.
The label “Gold Digger” very well could have been created by older women to slam younger women who were dating older successful men. The older woman considers the man to be a "blind old fool".
From a male’s point of view it’s no surprise that most women would love to be with rich, successful, powerful, or famous men. In fact most men are taught to believe if they become really successful; "They can have any woman they want!"
It should come as no surprise to women that most men would love to be with a beautiful sexy hot looking woman. Everyone wants to be with someone that has “something” going for himself. No loving father would want his daughter to marry any man who did not have his act together or at least had prospects for a bright future!
A lot of men accept this as a reality or part of life’s trade offs. Most recently Hugh Hefner age 84 got engaged to his girlfriend Crystal Harris age 24. It's fairly obvious if he were not rich and famous he probably would not be able to attract women 60 years his junior! No one is calling him "a blind fool."
Some people date simply for the fun of it!
“Dirty Old Man” sounds like a term a young woman may have labeled an older man for wanting the very same thing a younger man wants…..sex with her.
One could also easily imagine an older woman using this label to describe a man her age that pursues women her daughter’s age.
“MILF” is about the only label that may have come from a male and it really owes it’s popularity to the movie “American Pie” which featured some “teenage boy" fantasizing about another boy’s mother. Most grown men call a “MILF” their wife.
Name calling has a “sour grapes” taste to it.
Labels for the most part are given to people by those who despise the relationships of others.
If you're against May/December romances you should only date folks your own age.
Life is too short to waste time and energy putting others down for choices they have every legal right to make.
There are over 7 Billion people on the planet.
There are plenty of people to go around.
Why should we care about the reasons people are attracted each other?
(Naturally whom we date or marry is not always about looks, money, or age.)
It’s very possible some of these May/December couples have found “real love”!
Generally speaking men do not view each other as (the enemy) when it comes to dating, (Men don’t compete with each other, they envy one another).
Are women more offended by May/December Romance?
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on January 20, 2013:
Levertis Steele, Thanks for your comment. You made some valid points. I would also add that older people today are far more active than previous generations of those age 50+. They are not quietly fading into the night with the men wearing trousers pulled up to their chest with suspenders and the women aren't dying their hair blue and dressing in matronly dresses with aprons.
It's not unusual to see men and women in their 50s and beyond working out at the gym, staying up to date with current trends and technology, along with social networking. In fact AARP membership has taken a hit because a large percentage of "baby boomers" don't consider themselves to be "seniors". This staying young at heart and in mind along with (Viagra) has probably contributed to an increase in so called "May/December" relationships.
Levertis Steele from Southern Clime on January 18, 2013:
Older women usually get the short end of the stick because older men do not choose them as mates these days. Young men are slacking, so young women seek older, more mature, more responsible, more settled, and more abled men. Before Viagra, older men settled for older women, but now, they have choices. Older men choosing younger women is not new, but older women being pursued by younger men is rather new. The older women are more mature, more responsible, more settled, more job secured, and are caretakers or motherly. Both the young women and young men find comfort in older individuals. The cost of living, soci, and societal probems have caused young people to run into many blocades, so parent and grandparent-like mates rescue them from all of the unwanted drama. In a sense, these older individuals are like caring parents to the young. The aged get a high because of their ability to capture youth. All are happy. Love can be a big part of such relationships in some cases.
Societal issues cause these matches to happen. Consider early American marriages when men married young women who were dependent and needed older men who were independent and capable of taking care of a home. At time women were not plentiful, and men, pioneers, for example, waited for girls to get older enough to marry, so they felt lucky to get even a young teen. It was the conditions of the times that caused people to act as they did.
Old man, Viagra, and money make a good husband prospect for a young woman in any age and society. She is young sex, Christmas comes in July, and a huge ego boost for the older guy. They both have something that each desperately wants. So, sugar daddy and pretty young woman come together. Many older men are attractive and desirable, so they have few problems getting any young woman they want.
This is not to omit the fact that some of these "odd couples" do fall in love. They have choices and rights, so, what is to be said? We must also remember that old men and women often experience old-age crises and spring for youth to make them feel young again.
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on November 28, 2012:
ReneeDC1979, Thanks for stopping by to read my hub and posting a comment. I guess the real message for everyone is to ignore the noise of others when it comes to dating or selecting a mate. Life is a personal journey and we should life on our own terms! :-)
Renee' D. Campbell from Gaithersburg, Maryland on November 28, 2012:
Great hub - I think you may be on to something -women create the labels either because they are single and are mad their friend is not, they don't understand, or just don't l ike it.
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on November 18, 2012:
loveofnight, Thanks for stopping by and posting your comment Your statement. "Enjoy the ride until it's time to get off" makes a lot of sense. As I often say, "The world may not owe you anything but you owe yourself the world." In other words make the most of your time!
Loveofnight Anderson from Baltimore, Maryland on November 18, 2012:
Interesting hub, I too believe in to each his own. Life is too short to walk around trying to please the opinions of others. Enjoy the ride until it's time to get off. One thing that is guaranteed in this life is that we will all one day die.So why deny yourself the pleasures of your heart.Although I must say that I cannot see myself dating someone younger than myself, I honestly don't care what others may choose to do.
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on May 24, 2012:
Charlu, Thanks for stopping by to read my hub and posting your comment. I enjoyed responding to the question you posted. As a society we tend to say "Age is just a number" and then change our mind or draw the line. Legally anyone over the age of 18 is allowed to love anyone they want who is an adult. Still it's human nature for us to want to weigh in on other people's relationships. LOL
Charlu from Florida on May 24, 2012:
Great hub and you are so right about life being to short. To say it didn't bother me sometimes to see both would be a lie, but if they're enjoying themselves then why not. Thanks posting the link.
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on August 09, 2011:
Pamela N Red, Thanks for your comment.
I agree with you (most men) could care less about how much money a woman earns when it comes to selecting a mate. Physical attraction & chemistry are far more important. It's usually younger women that have a problem with a guy their age dating older women (especially if they consider him to be "HOT"). It's been said, "Age is just a number", until someone breaks a hip or runs out of energy. ha ha ha. As for inheritances kids shouldn't count on them to begin with. Their parents are entitled to spend their money anyway they want.
Pamela N Red from Oklahoma on August 09, 2011:
I have a problem with really young women marrying old guys but not out of jealousy. I feel sorry for the man who is going to be taken advantage of as well as his children from previous marriages who often lose out on their inheritance.
As far as older women and younger men, I'd have a hard time dating a much younger guy because they would remind me too much of my own sons.
People always assume the older woman has pursued the younger man. In most cases that is not true. I know more older women with younger men than the other way around and in every circumstance the guy was persistent in his efforts to woo the woman. Those guys had more money than the women so it was definitely not for the women's assets.
dashingscorpio (author) from Chicago on December 02, 2010:
Thanks for your comment Longhunter.
I agree with you as long as the two people in the relationship are happy that's all that matters!
If someone is against May/December relationships they always have the option of never entering into one! :-)
Once again thanks for taking the time to read my hub and leave a comment.The "Lion" label might work! LOL!
Longhunter on December 02, 2010:
Happiness is hard enough to find without throwing an age requirement at it as well.
As for the younger man/older woman relationships, if they're happy, who cares?
Sometimes you find a person you're attracted to and have several things in common with that just happens to be the same age you are. Other times, there may decades of age difference. If it doesn't bother the two people in the relationship and they're both of consenting age, why should it bother anyone else?
As for what to call the older man in an older man/younger woman relationship and keeping with the animal theme? How about...."lion" or "panther?"
Maybe we don't label either person or relationship and just be glad they found happiness.
Good hub, dashingscorpio.
A. Hick on July 07, 2010:
I think the older women and younger men scenario is more acceptable in today's more egalitarian society than the paring of older men with younger women. Probably because of its novelty and the fact that popular culture now embraces the idea that women should be allowed some slack to engage in what men have been doing for eons. The name "cougar" itself is not considered derogatory, but "empowering" by the women who embrace this lifestyle. Since women today have more control over not only their bodies, but all aspects of their lives than in times past, I think most younger women today simply resent it when "older" men hit on them. Women feel they no longer have to resort to hooking up with some older dude in order to have a good life. They can pursue men their own age whom they find physically attractive, or good looking younger men. Many women, even in their 20s earn as much or more than men their own ages. There will never be a "positive" male age gap relationship term equivalent to the term "cougar." The one most often used today, and likely for some time to come is simply, "pervert." lol