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Do you think that age is "just a number"?

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hurtbs posted 1/18/2014 19:43 PM

This is prompted from my experience with O.L.D. and others on here as well. I've been getting a lot of messages from men *well* outside of my age specifications. I'm 35. I put men 28-45. My sentiment is that I don't have children and want the option for that. I also find that most people (not all) until they hit their late 28's haven't really gotten their life settled or directional. Men in the mid-late forties and above are generally done with their reproductive lives (with exception). Also, generally, I'm not particularly attracted to men significantly older than me. There are exceptions of course (If Brad Pitt or George Clooney sent me a message, I'd be there!). Also, I don't want to be 50 and caring for a spouse that in their 70's or 80's!!

So, here's the thing, I get a lot of messages from men that are quite a bit older - fifties, sixties, and above. They almost all tell me in messages that "age is just a number." My sentiment is, "Yes and no." I think that it's about where you are in life (in addition to things like attraction). THere are generally markers that align with age. So if you're in your sixties with grandchildren.... that's is far more advanced than I am in my life! If you have children in college and two ex-wives... major distinction in life. I also find the "age is just a number" thing a way to kind of neg you into the date - implying that you're shallow, or not experienced enough to understand age is meaningless. I also suspect that they're not messaging women 20 years *older* than them with the same statements.

So.... what are your thoughts? Is age just number?

ladythump posted 1/18/2014 19:45 PM

Age is just a number but I understand what you're saying about a 60 year old being in a different place than you. I wouldn't rule out an active person in their later 40s or early 50s if you have much in common. I mean, a coffee date can't hurt. If you find a connection, even better.

By the way, what is O.L.D.?

hurtbs posted 1/18/2014 19:48 PM

It's On-Line-Dating.

kernel posted 1/18/2014 20:11 PM

I think that it's about where you are in life

This. ^^^^ Stick to the parameters that work for you. Those guys on OLD are using "age is just a number" to get you to change your standards to fit them in. Personally, it irritates me right up front that they ignore your parameters!! Isn't that already a red flag? They can't even respect you enough to think that you know your own mind and what you want? And you can bet the bank they aren't saying that to women 20 years older than them, no way.

Nature_Girl posted 1/18/2014 20:13 PM

I'm with you. It's Yes and No. There ARE considerations depending on what stage of life you're in. My ex was 8 years older than me and he didn't wear that age difference well. I realized I didn't want to be a nursemaid to someone when I was still being a mother to my own children.

If you're still wanting to START a family, it would take an exceptional older man to be capable of joyfully & enthusiastically fathering them while also being a father/grandfather to his first set of children.

damncutekitty posted 1/18/2014 20:18 PM

My biggest pet peeve with OLD is people who don't read profiles. They just look at photos and send messages when they see what they like. The biggest category of "I don't read profiles" offenders are people looking to date someone much younger than they are. It's clear they only want someone young and cute, they don't give 2 shits about the person's interests or where they are in life.

When I was doing OLD I used to have a lot of fun trolling dudes who clearly didn't read my profiles or didn't care what I was looking for. I'd be like, wow you are 10 years older than my dad and hate all of my interests, you must be my soulmate.

[This message edited by damncutekitty at 8:19 PM, January 18th (Saturday)]

Brandon808 posted 1/18/2014 20:32 PM

So what if age is just a number? Honestly I think the bigger issue isn't whether or not it's a number but the fact that these men are ignoring your preference. If I have to convince a woman to give me a chance because of our age difference then I feel we are already at fundamental disadvantage.

I should mention that I don't have any problem with age differences when it comes to dating, but (you had to know a 'but' was coming) I personally do not intend to look for anyone significantly older or younger. It just seems to work against you when you want to find someone with whom you have things in common. It doesn't define all of the things you have in common. I just find that someone who is a much older or much younger is in a very different place in their lives.

hurtbs posted 1/18/2014 20:39 PM

@brandon - oh I Kamp not trying to talk myself into dating one of these guys whatsoever. I just thought that it was an interesting topic. I've seen th issue on NB a lot and experienced it frequently.

inconnu posted 1/18/2014 20:49 PM

Now, that I'm almost 50, yes I think age is just a number. For me. For most people in their teens, 20s, and 30s? It's not. There's an awful lot of living to be done, and life experiences to gain, during those years. Once you (the general you) are older, and you have those life experiences, then age becomes less relevant.

Mostly, I think compatibility is about the stage of life you're in. Most people in their 20s and 30s are simply not in the same stage of life as people in their 40s, 50s, and beyond.

Amazonia posted 1/18/2014 20:54 PM

I do think it's just a number - for myself. The fact that I'm 30 means virtually nothing. The place I'm in with my life, my career, my relationships, that's a lot more meaningful to me than a number.

But when it comes to dating, I'm like you, I want someone in my same stage of life! I know guys my age who don't have a steady job or know what they want to do with their lives, mooching off mom and dad or perennially in graduate program after graduate program in unrelated fields.

Not what I'm looking for.

Then again, neither is a guy twice my age looking for a "travel companion" and offering an all expenses paid trip to Europe.

gardenparty posted 1/18/2014 20:56 PM

My SO is 21 years younger than me, we have been friends for 6 years, dating for almost 4 and living together for 2 1/2. However, there are times when I feel the age difference. I have 2 children who are the same age as him, he has no children and by staying with me will not have any of his own. At this time in his life he does not want any but of course that could change. We both work physically demanding jobs and very long hours but I feel it more. He is very understanding when I say that I am sore or hurt but he is young and recovers way faster than I do. We are at the same stage in our lives professionally, I started this career late and he started very young. We work in an environment that encompasses 17 to 70 years olds and have a wide age range among our friends so that is 2 things we have in common. I adore this man and he has enriched my life in many, many ways but I would not ever deliberately date somebody this far out of my age range again.

PhoenixRisen posted 1/18/2014 20:57 PM

I think people should date those of similar age because age = generation = shared experiences being economic, political, social experiences.

My general rule of thumb is at most 8 years younger or older.
I'm 38 but right now only o.l.d. focus 35-45, any younger and they tend to want to have children, any older and I'm not attractive to them physically. But I'd would break that rule for a really rare person who was a perfect fit or Brad Pitt.

[This message edited by PhoenixRisen at 11:33 AM, January 19th (Sunday)]

Brandon808 posted 1/18/2014 21:00 PM

Oh, I didn't think you were trying to talk yourself into dating one of those guys. At least I hoped you weren't. It seemed more like you were throwing the question out there to consider age differences in general. The topic of age being just number not withstanding, I just wanted to express that those guys even asking you like that was not cool to me.

SBB posted 1/18/2014 22:20 PM

Age IS just a number - 60 year olds trolling 35 year olds online is a different thing. I feel the same way about a 40s man tolling for 20s women.

I've found men in their 40s DO want more children - I dont. I've never been into older men but at 38 I've dated a few 50s men. I met them through friends and we connected well so the age was not an issue. They usually dated close to their own age.

Now if they only dated women my age it would have creeped me out. There's a reason and it's not 'connection' or anything to so with me. It is simply my age. Yuck.

Sad in AZ posted 1/18/2014 23:24 PM

I'm 59. I definitely believe age is just a number for me, but dating is another story. It's situational. When I tried OLD, the only guys that asked me out were younger--anywhere from 5-8 years younger. They were weird--but they were younger

I did talk to some older guys; I would read into their profiles, and then hope they were telling the truth. If they were into golf, reading, were retired--I'd say 'next' because they would have been to sedate for me. I like to hike-challenging hikes. I work full time, like to travel and love birding--precludes a lot people

fireproof posted 1/19/2014 00:28 AM

I think depending on the situation it can be. I would choose someone older with values than someone younger just because of their age.

Although in your case you are hoping for children and not to say an older man wouldn't be willing but for you I would stick with your age range.

A lot of women will attract older men because some want to know they can attract younger women and a lot of women (from what I have been told) in their age group are more looking for a instant relationship - pressure is high- getting older etc.

Good luck!

NWfleur posted 1/19/2014 02:01 AM

My SO is 9 years older than me. I'm 40, he's 49. At first I wasn't so sure about the age difference, since I'd never dated anyone in my life more than a year or two older. He has a 20 year old daughter, which felt odd to me at first, since my kids are young! We aren't a whole generation apart, but there are subtle differences. He was old enough to know better than to listen to bad 80's music, for example, when I was just a little kid and loved all of it!!!

But after awhile it wasn't much of an issue. I find him very attractive (remember that Brad Pitt is now 50!) and we had a lot in common. And he's very active and takes great care of himself. I love that he acts like a grown man, rather than a boy like my ex who was three years younger, and has his act together. He doesn't want babies, no, but I've had my own so that's not an issue. I think it's a "stage" thing more than an "age" thing. You might find a 35 year old that doesn't want kids or a 45 year old that does. I'd say about 10 years would be my cap, but who knows. I would have said 5 before meeting my SO. Some couples have much bigger gaps and it works fine...

For what it's worth, while I never even actually went on a date, I checked out OLD for awhile, and most of the men that contacted me were older. Some a LOT older. It seemed clear most of the men my age didn't want a 40 year old with two kids. So I would think being kidless and a little younger you would have more options...

Bobbi_sue posted 1/19/2014 02:42 AM

I would have to say I don't really have a problem with couples with a big age difference if they do not "usually seek" someone much older/younger than themselves, but were put in circumstances where they met someone (at work, or at social event, or something, and somehow clicked after that).

But age is NOT just a number to most people who loudly proclaim age is just a number, IMO.
In fact, I'm going to talk about older men who seek far younger women here, though I know it can be the other way around. A lot of those people will not date someone close to their own age and have no interest, but will throw out that worn out line "age is just a number" to try to convince a younger woman, or even make her feel guilty for her "prejudice."

To me, such men are creepy and one thing is for sure, age is not just a number for them, but it makes them mad that some women have age preference ranges too.

cmego posted 1/19/2014 06:56 AM

For me, I'm only attracted physically to men around my age, like within 5 years either way. I'm 43. A guy below 38 looks like a baby to me, a guy over 48 looks too old. I tend to date men younger than me…by just a few years. Both exH and dbf were 3 years younger. I"m told I look younger than I am, so I attract younger guys.

My Dad was 8 years older than my Mom, and my Mom now warns be against dating someone 8 years older, she says, "you don't want to have to take care of him when he is older!". But, if I were ever to meet a guy that turns my head and he is older, then I would give it a try.

The other "problem" I have is that I had kids late. So, a lot of the guys I'm dating that are around 45 have kids much older than mine. Most have high school/some college while mine are both in elementary school. So, although the same age…a world of difference in stage of life.

ImEnoughForMe posted 1/19/2014 07:50 AM

Now that I'm in my 40's I do think age is just a number.

I was recently hit on by a man 30 years older than me. I politely turned him down. He made some comments that would to most people not seem rude. But what I got from his comments where he was not showing respect for my choices, which means they aren't looking at me as a person. Such as those men who continue on with you that "age is just a number".

You know what you want in your next realtionship. I don't think it's an age thing so much as finding someone that will meet your needs. Someone who will disrespect you will not. I think it's smart that you recognize the people who make these comments to you.

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