Am I ageist?

I think perhaps I am. OK, not generally, but when it comes to internet dating. I’ve said on my profile that it’s ‘decidedly important’ that the guys I’m looking for are no more than 2 years younger than me, and no more than 6 years older.

Why those ranges? Well, my little brother is three years younger and it’s just a bit weird for me to think of dating someone his age. This despite the fact that I have several friends who are easily 3-10 years younger than me.

As for older, well, I just think it starts getting a bit weird when a guy is more than 6 years older than I am. Particularly when they are nearing – or over 50. That’s ‘dad’ territory (although my own Dad is in his late 60s!).

So the last few weeks, I’ve had a bunch of emails through on the dating site. Some plain boring (‘can we chat’ – erm, no) and some plain weird (there was one which was way off colour – the dude did have the cojones to mail an apology a few days later) but most are from guys between 49 and 55.

So now my profile has my stipulated age range as ‘non-negotiable’. I really would like to meet guys around my age. I’m not over the hill yet – I’d like a guy who isn’t. So yes, perhaps I AM ageist after all, but only when it comes to dating.

Am I cutting myself off from a potential Michael Douglas/Catherine Zeta Jones or Demi/Ashton type perfect relationship? Maybe, but it’s what I’m comfortable with.

How far out of your own age range will you go?

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4 thoughts on “Am I ageist?

  1. I agree with your age bubble. At the risk of sounding sexist, I think even as adults men are often not as mature as women, so it’s risky to date a younger man. Not impossible–you could end up with a mature younger man–but I feel the odds are more stacked against you if you choose to go that way. And really, dating is nothing if not a kind of gambling game where you play the odds.

    I think older men are generally less risky than younger men. After all, if you date an older man his maturity level is more likely (statistically speaking) to match yours. However, you also run the risk of him being into younger women not because the maturity matches, but because he’s a slave to his reptilian/caveman brain that tells him that younger women are more reproductively viable and become less attractive as their hair whitens (at which point he goes looking for a woman the age of his daughter).

    None of these above scenarios is a GIVEN, but in order to decrease your chances of encountering them, and to save yourself time wading through pointless emails, YES, you should limit your age range. In my opinion.

    Christina

  2. I am having a very similar experience although in a different age bracket. I am 29 and I refuse to date a guy that is younger. I’ve tried a couple times and I suppose I am always up for breaking the rules if I want to, but I’ve dated younger men before and they were not very mature, not ready to settle down, not on the same wavelenght as me. I’ve also felt the same way when I dated men in their early 30s though. But I don’t want to date men who are more than 8 years older than me. I just think that you’re in a different phase in your life when you are 37 than when you are 29. Or maybe I feel that the man I would dating SHOULD be in a different phase in his life by the time he is 37 and he shouldn’t be interested in running around with me.

    I dated a man 10 years older than me and I thought he would be so mature and wonderful but really, he was immature and screwed up and that is why he was into a woman 10 years younger.

    I want to be on an adventure with a peer. And it is fun to have experienced certain things during the same era. I was 19 in 1999 and have a 19 year old’s memories of Y2K and all that garbage. I think its fun to have someone who has a similar context.

  3. I’m ageist when it comes to dating too- or at least online dating. I figure if I am “meant to be” with someone of a vastly different age, then I will be, but I’m not going to bother “shopping” for that while online dating.

    I’m a bit different than you. I’m about a month away from 32, and I’ll date down to about 26 (actually my younger brother’s age) and up to maybe mid-30s. I’m seeing someone who’s 38 right now (I don’t think it’s “serious”). I’m much more comfortable dating younger men than older men. When I was in my 20s I went on a few dates with guys in their 30s and I felt like they were trying to be my dad or something- they were always giving me “advice” on my career and whatnot. I too, however, get a lot of emails from guys in their 40s and 50s. I don’t know why these guys are so interested in women who are so much younger- it’s one thing to date someone a few years younger; it’s another thing to date decades younger. The worst part is that some of them think it’s some kind of selling point- I hate the older guys who try to convince me to go out with them by telling me about their house and “stability.”

  4. @Christina I’m not so sure the maturity thing is true – for me it’s more about life stages. Maybe there’s a very mature 25 year old guy out there who’s tired of playing the field. With a six-pack! LOL! I do question thought why some guys aren’t interested in dating women their own age – what’s wrong with that? Clearly the fresher / perkier / younger versions appeal more… But isn’t beauty apparently only skin deep? Hmm.

    @singlutionary You put that so well! I too want someone who grew up listening to Duran Duran and Bananarama and can remember what Kylie was like when she first started out. And the original A-Team, and how cool Knight Rider was before the Hoff became, well, the Hoff… πŸ™‚

    @Lauri Stability – LOL! Read: boring πŸ™‚ I’ve dated younger than me a couple of times – both times the age thing became irrelevant and we split up for other reasons (although one ex had an annoying habit of calling me his Sugar Mommy from time to time… he was a whole 2 years younger!).

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