What it's like to date an older man
At the age of 26, Kat, now 32, dated a guy 10 years her senior, for three years. "He was the single guy in the group of friends," she says. "His friends were all with families and had kids and were doing the house and family stuff. He was seen as the dark horse."
Kat describes her ex-partner as youthful for his age and a bit of a free spirit. "He rode a motorbike and was just into other stuff from his friends … I guess he wasn't ready to be an adult, but the relationship was good."
When there's a 10 year age gap
Sarah, 41, from the Netherlands met Pete, 26, in France when she was just 16. "He was 26 and had no idea when we met that I was 16. He played in a band that I thought was awesome, and I approached him."
At first, Pete didn't realise there was a 10 year age gap, but once he found out, he decided to continue with the relationship, albeit short and sweet.
"He was shocked that I was 16 and he wasn't into my age but he was into me. I don't think he would have necessarily gone there if he'd known my age beforehand."
What men think about dating younger women
A forum on elite trader reveals that some men believe dating a woman 10 or 20 years their junior gives them a higher social standing, even if the company you're with disagree.
"When it comes down to it, young women are way better then older women," says Achilles28. "Why? Young women are hotter, in better shape, in the sexual experimentation phase of life, have way less baggage (emotional), way fewer expectations, have WAY FEWER partners, cost WAY less, and love with an open heart."
Another user says: "A couple of weeks ago I was at some dinner date. Only older women were there, nothing worth of any effort. So I decided to spice up the discussion by saying I prefer younger women. They acted like they were bitten by a snake … In my prime a guy who was getting a lot of younger ones, got respect. Nowadays, you get a lot of frowning."
The pros and cons of dating an older man
There are clearly men who define their social status by having a younger woman on their arm, but Holly from matchsmith.com says not all men are in it for a trophy wife, and women have different agendas, too.
Bartter says for some women it can be appealing to go out with someone more established and certain of themselves, who knows what they want from life. But, she warns, there are also some potential downsides.
"If you prefer to date older men, be aware of how they will fit into your life, friends and wider social circle … While one-on-one matters, you want to have a partner you can bring into your life as a whole, and a very large age gap can sometimes make this difficult long-term."
And remember, they could also have ex-wives, children and even grandkids.
How much older is too old?
A general rule is that it's socially acceptable to date someone using the 'half your age plus seven' rule. If they're younger, you half your age then add seven, but if they're older, you subtract seven from your age and double the number.
For example, this is the social rule for a 40 year old
- Age: 40 ÷ 2 = 20 + 7 = 27. This is your minimum number
- Age: 40 - 7 = 33 x 2 = 66. This is your maximum number
The best dating sites for meeting older men
Dating apps like Tinder and Bumble have a sliding scale that goes up to 50+ but if you're looking for an even older guy there are websites dedicated to seekers of a sugar baby or sugar daddy.
International dating site seeking.com has an Australian arm and is specifically for women looking for an older guy, or for men seeking a younger woman. According to the website, there are four sugar babies for every sugar daddy.
According to secretbenefits.com, "A sugar baby wants something more than a traditional relationship. She's looking for a successful and generous gentleman. She seeks the chance to upgrade her lifestyle. She's an attractive, goal-oriented woman who knows what she wants."
"A sugar daddy is a successful man who knows exactly what he wants from a relationship. He wants to generously share his lifestyle and experience with an attractive companion."
Celeb couples with a 10+ age gap
- Known for their cute and funny Instaposts, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds have an 11 year age gap. Seems to work for them.
- George and Amal push it out even further with a 17-year age gap. Guess it took a 35 year old Human Rights lawyer to win Clooney's heart.
- Donald and Melania Trump have a 24-year bridge between them. They say love is blind…
- Alec Baldwin divorced Kim Bassinger at the age of 60, and married 27-year-old Hilaria Thomas. They have four children and are still together.
- There's a 12-year age gap between Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikender. So far so good.
- Woody Allen was 56 when he controversially pursued 19-year-old Soon-Yi Previn. Previn happens to be Mia Farrow's adopted daughter, whom Allen was married to at the time.
- The most famous serial age gap dater has to be Hugh Hefner who consistently had a string of much younger girlfriends. He married Crystal Harris in 2012 at the tender age of 86, Harris was 26.