Trust me, as you get older, sex drops further and further down your list of relationship priorities.
1. She’s in it for the money.
People get together for all sorts of reasons. Money can be a factor in any relationship, but it seems a little unfair, not to mention superficial, to judge people’s motivations on the basis of simple arithmetic. As my girlfriend likes to say: “If I was looking for a sugar daddy, I’d have gone for someone a lot richer and better-looking than you.” (Did I mention her great sense of humor?)
If you think about it, women in their 20s are probably less likely than older women to care about the financial status of their partners. Most of them are in their romantic, idealistic phase. They’re not worrying about things like long-term security and whether you’ll be a good provider for the children you might have someday — that comes later. Women in their 20s have no problem going for pizza and taking the subway home. Give ‘em a decade or so, and if they’re still single, they’ll want see your stock portfolio before they agree to a second date.
2. He’s only in it for the sex.
Seriously? As compared to what, all those guys in their 20s who are in clubs at 3 a.m. looking for a deep, meaningful connection? Trust me, as you get older, sex drops further and further down your list of relationship priorities. Things like friendship, intimacy and good conversation become a lot more important, which is probably a big part of the attraction for girls who are fed up with guys talking to their breasts.
3. It won’t last.
Remember Woody Allen and Soon-Yi? Of course you don’t; you’re too young. But back in 1992, the tabloids were ablaze because the 56-year-old film director was dating a 21-year-old (who happened to be his adopted step-daughter). They went on to marry, and 20 years later, they’re still together. Statistically, relationships between older men and younger women are among the most stable. Men tend to become more patient and a little less self-centered with age, which probably helps. They’re also more amenable to settling down because, having been around the block a few times, they’re often in a better position to understand and appreciate their mates.
4. They can’t possibly have anything in common.
Whatever happened to opposites attract? My girlfriend and I have very different points of view when it comes to music, culture and politics, but so do a lot of other couples. Part of the fun has been comparing experiences and learning from each other. We also spend a lot of time discussing more immediate concerns like our feelings and the status of our relationship — you know, the stuff I would have stuck pins in my eyes rather than talk about when I was younger, the stuff that people talk about music, culture and politics to avoid.
5. It’s disgusting/unnatural/just plain yucky!
Funny, I’m old enough to remember people saying the same thing when they saw a mixed-race couple, or two gay men embracing in public. As my girlfriend says when people point out that I’m old enough to be her father: “Yes, but he’s not my father, and neither are you, so why is it any of your business?” (Did I mention her great sense of humor?)
When all is said and done, love is a rare and beautiful thing. Maybe if we all spent a little more time looking for it, and a little less judging people who’ve found it, the world would be a brighter, happier place.