Does it matter how old a guy is when you start dating?
It’s easy to pretend that age difference doesn’t matter, but the truth is, sometimes it doesn’t matter. Other times it definitely does. It all comes down to what you both want.
Let’s face it, age plays a large part in your lifestyle, where you see yourself in the next 5 years, and what sort of relationship you’re looking for.
In this post, we’ll look at the MOST IMPORTANT things to consider before dating a significantly older or younger guy, and explain how men’s minds work when it comes to age gaps.
Figure Out What He Wants
Let’s say you’re 35, and the guy you’re dating is a fresh-faced 26 year old. Maybe he’s still studying for his graduate degree, while you’re working a high-flying career in finance.
Does this kind of age gap matter when dating younger men?
Well, it depends on some key questions:
- What kind of relationship is he looking for?
- Do you both want to settle down in the next few years?
- Do you want kids? Like, in the next 2/3 years? Does he?
- What kind of lifestyle do you both want?
You need to use the early dates to figure out answers to these questions. Because the truth is, it’s not the literal age that matters. It’s the stage of life you’re currently in. And if you don’t find this out sooner it’s only going to be more painful later when you’re deeply involved with him.
Every man has a blueprint in his mind of when he sees himself getting serious with a woman.
For some men, that could be his early twenties (this is typically the guy who marries his high school sweetheart).
For another type of man, the years from 20-35 are when he pictures a life of single, unattached, career-focused, jet-setting fun, after which he wants to marry and settle down with the right woman.
Then there are those men who put commitment off until MUCH LATER, or guys who find themselves divorced at 50 and are suddenly back in the dating game.
So a man could be anywhere from 21-50, and still see himself as either a dedicated bachelor or a marriage-seeking commitment lover. It depends on where he is emotionally and mentally – this is what you really need to pay attention to.
Be Realistic, But Open-Minded
Suppose you’re 26 and wondering if you should be with a 42 year old guy.
This is where self-awareness is key – especially when it comes to dating older men.
Ask yourself: What am I ready for right now?
Maybe he’s forty and looking to settle down quickly, but you see yourself waiting a few more years. In which case, it’s important to find out how flexible he is about this. If he’s desperate for marriage soon, then you’re probably going to feel rushed if you feel pushed to a level commitment you’re not ready for.
So when it comes to age, you want to strike a balance between being realistic and open-minded.
Some women are far too closed about this issue. They have an extremely specific vision of a guy they’re looking for (e.g. “must work in financial services and be between age 30-35”).
Those kind of strict rules don’t help. In fact, they can make you miss out on tons of amazing guys who don’t fall in these requirements.
However, you also need to be realistic. So if you know a 45 year old guy is going to want a steady, committed relationship leading to marriage, whilst you’re 26 and can’t even see yourself committing to living in one country right now, then that guy probably isn’t for you.
Think carefully about what stage of life you’re both in and work backwards from there. And always, always listen to what a guy says – it will tell you very clearly what he’s looking for.
After you’ve done all that, keep an open mind. You always have to be willing to be surprised in dating, and age gaps are no different!