Jun 202007

If you missed the series premiere of NBC’s Age of Love a couple of days ago, here’s the scoop: basically, it’s a new dating show starring sexy 30-something Aussie tennis guru, Mark Philippoussis. The twist? A bunch of young 20-something “kittens” battle older 40-something “cougars” to win the guy. (Yes, the show’s themes are every bit as predictable as you’d imagine they would be.) Although I’ve not been convinced that it’s worth watching an entire season of Age of Love, the show does make me think about my own dating life.

Maybe it’s because one of the guys who contacted me via Nerve Personals says he considered sending me an email referencing my “affinity for sex scenes featuring ‘older women’ with ‘younger men’”. Maybe it’s because I enjoy the movie Notes on a Scandal — a fictitious story about a cougar teacher who carnally “schools” one of her male cub students — just a tad too much. Or, of course, maybe it’s because I’m an obsessive person who spends way too much time pondering the whats, whys, and whos of the dating world. In any case, I notice that I’ve been very attracted to younger men lately.

Hmmm … obviously, I’m not alone on this one. In recent years — from CBS to ABC, from Oprah to MSNBC and iVillage — everyone has been talking about younger men / older women pairings. Good Housekeeping Magazine featured a piece on the trend. And, over at Nerve, writers like Douglas Rushkoff proclaim “in 2033, age 70 is the new 30″. (Psst! Today on Nerve, I wrote about a younger man who recently approached me.) Older urban cougars. Younger men cubs. Hey, with the photo above, I know that I’m in good company. How about you? Whether you’re male or female, tell me: Do you tend to date older or younger or exactly within your age range?

  25 Responses to “Urban Cougars and Their Young Boytoys”

  1. I think right now, because I’m 23/24, I prefer someone my own age or a tad older. I wouldn’t cross out the possibility of a 21/22 y/o maybe but something like an 18 y/old seems a bit too young and would do my head in. I’m sure the older I get the higher this cutoff point would be though?

  2. I’m really glad you posted this. One of my friends who lives in San Francisco shared with me this website – http://urbancougar.com/ – that my friends and I found pretty interesting.

    I’m only 21 so right now I’m sticking with my age and older, any younger and I may be getting into high school territory. As I get older that’ll probably change though.

  3. Well, I used to say there is no way I would date a guy younger than me (I am 35) but lately only guys in their late 20′s have been hitting on me. I am seriously thinking of refining my age thing just because I don’t seem to attract guys my age (I think they are all looking for gals in their 20′s). Mid 30′s isn’t the best time to date from all accounts if you are a woman (from what I heard). I personally don’t think it is better or worse, just different.

    Oh and WE did an episode of Secret Lives of Women based on Cougars that was interesting. I find myself addicted to that show. It is interesting to learn about all the different types of “lives” that I don’t belong too: sex phone operators, lipstick lesbians, manchausin moms, ect.

  4. I’m dating a gal about 5 years older than me. Don’t tell her I told you! ;)

  5. “She’s 42, He’s 39″ does not really count. They’re both in the same category of “40-ish”, even if the guy who’s not quite 40 would HATE to hear of himself be put in any catoegory with the number “40″ in it. Besides, as you get older anybody within about 5 years of your age can be considered “about your age”. (This does NOT apply to people in their early 20′s, since dating somebody 5 years younger than you when you’re that age can potentially put you in jail.



  7. Well, I don’t know about dating… But I’m 35 and recently had a fling with a 26 year old that was fantastic. It’s a good age combination for sex, I think. I can’t make generalizations for all younger men/older women combinations but he had stamina and a refreshingly unjaded view of life plus a marked lack of baggage. From his point of view, I had some tricks he hadn’t seen yet plus I know who I am and what I want and I’m comfortable with myself. So we were really compatible sexually. But I wouldn’t date him. He’s still too young, life-wise. But for fun… oh honey, he was fun…!

  8. well… I am 38 and guys my age are either hopelessly clinging to adolecense, or looking to date 21 year olds, or both. Guys in their 50s and 60s creep me out.

    I’ve been having a fucking blast with my 24, 25 and 26 year olds though! i don’t take things seriously with them, and they treat me with the respect their older counterparts fail to.

  9. My beau is 9 years my junior. I’m 40. He’s 31. He’s an old soul though. Much more mature than his peers.

    I beleive that true love is too hard to find to place age constraints on it.

  10. i have one word,


    sexy and young being relative and thing being the only thing absolute.

    i am drunk, btw.

  11. Darwin: I totally believe that too — the “age difference” stuff changes at different points in our lives. Like, when I was 21, I definitely wouldn’t date someone three years younger than I was. But, now, I’ve dated guys who were more than 3 years younger.

    theblacksapphire: I’ve heard of that website. They have cougar “hunting tips” or something like that. I think it’s great!

    Felicia: I think you’re on to something. 30-something boys date 20-something girls. And, more 20-something boys are dating 30-something women. I met this 20-something French guy at this party last night. He’s was like, “I like older women.” I was like, “But, of course. You’re French.” Ah, French boys. Oh la la! ;-)

    Dating Dummy: I won’t tell her if you don’t! ;-)

    Baba Doodlius: Yeah, I thought of taking that couple out. Not because of the tiny age disparity … Because of Josh Brolin supposed domestic violence arrest. Beating women = you’re an asshole. So, I was going to put Tim Robbins (48) and Susan Sarandon (60) in the collage instead of Josh & Diane. I *love* Tim Robbins!!! Any man who feels comfortable admitting that he thinks Harry Belafonte is “sexy” is a winner in my book!

    tonitobandito: Awww, sweetpea, THANK YOU for the warm “welcome home” message!!! :-)

    kbarrett: I *love* 20-something men. Less drama. Light, fun and, of course, very very energetic.

    Amy: Sounds like you and Felicia are on the same page.

    Angel: You’re like Halle and Gabriel!! :) And, I love what you said about: “[T]rue love is too hard to find to place age constraints on it.””

    melo: sexyyoungthing. I LOVE it. :-) Drunken blogging? Love it even more. ;-)

  12. We have a saying in Holland: “You can learn it by riding a old bike” hehe. I have to admit tho, woman now in their 40ies look much better then 40 y.o 10 years ago. :)

  13. It’s true. They say 40 is the new 30 and 30 is the new 20.

  14. Well and exact quote from that show on WE……there is always the 26 fits into 35 very well LOL :)

  15. Oh, I **LOVE** that!!! :-)

  16. I’m almost 40 and I’ve been “seeing” younger guys since I was 30. My latest is a 23 year old. He most definitely has stamina and treats me with respect which I LOVE. I’ve noticed the difference between men my age and the younger guys. The ones my age can seem to hold up.

    I only heard about the name for this a couple of days ago when my friend called me a cougar. I had to check it out and find out for myself. I think it’s awesome!

  17. I really like all the comments, I am dating a 21 years old and I am 33. I was very nervous about it, but know I see it not that bad “ha”.

  18. I’m 49 dating/living with a 22 yr old.  He pursued me till I gave in.  We are having a blast, know its temporary, but we are enjoying each other a day at a time.  He is the first younger man I’ve been with – prior to him my choice in men was 10 – 17 yrs older……

  19. It seems that the older I get(currently 35) the younger they get. I’ve been getting some attention from younger guys(20′s roughly). They don’t seem to have as many issues. The guy I’m with is 8 years older than I am and he’s like my Father.If I were completely single, I’d definitely date a younger man. A relationship long-term wise would be if we actually had more in common other than sex.

  20. I understand the Cougar, but I am a 37 year black woman who prefers dating white men from late 40′s to early 50′s. As Jennifer (Lonnie Anderson) once said on WKRP… Older men are Mature, Generous and Tire easily. I like a good time, multiple times, but hate to be worn out in one super session. 

    My quandry though with all this talk of Cougars, MILF’s and GILF’s is there are names for the older woman. What about the Guy? What do you call an older man who dates younger women?

  21. The last two years I have found that I am attracting the “cubs”  I am single never married no kids and these guys are hot!   I am enjoying it I am 38 and not looking for a relationship this is perfect…..My recent cub calls me almost once a day…even just to say hi….nice I am enjoying it…..no guilt here….

  22. I have been a GILF hunter ever since I had a crush on my best friends grandmother in college (i’m 39). My biggest problem has always been getting them to take me seriously as a potential boyfriend.
    Many of the GILFS that are publicized are that great looking but there are plenty of women in their 50′s-60′s who are gorgeous without having surgery.
    Case in point, this 63 year old GILF: http://www.eros-la.com/files/121550.htm

  23. I’m 25 years old and slightly, no highly confused. For the longest time I just knew I wanted a guy at least a few years older than me, but the more I date those guys, the more I realized how much baggage they have and how disrespectful and unappreciative they could be. Recently, a 17 year old (soon to be 18 in May) started flirting with me, giving me compliments all of the time and being generally sweet, something I fail to see in the majority of guys my age and older. It was just really cute at first; I thought he was a sweet, cute kid and nothing more. But, recently, I’ve noticed that I get those “crush” feelings when he comes aroung; butterflies, nervousness, etc. My first thougt is that this is absolutely gross and crosses way too many lines and not only is this wrong, this is illegal! I’ve talked to only a couple people about it, just being a crush and nothing more, and they’ve both told me that once he’s 18, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. I’m so confused though because I’m one who tends to stick to society’s stigma’s, stupidly so, like older women generally shouldn’t date younger men, 8 years younger at that. However, I’ve also notived a proliferation, in the media and in everyday society, of older women dating younger, sometimes much younger men. They’ve been dubbed “Cougars”, which is, as far as I’ve experienced, a quite sexy concept. My confusion arises at another point: I’m not sure if I’d be considered something like a “Cougar” or something more like a sick-o. Help!

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