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I know there's a lot that goes into the mix--personality, zest for living, confidence, etc., and maybe I'm warped by my few experiences. I've dated women 10 years younger (when I was 35) and 10 years older (when I was 40). Personality, positivism, humor, attitude, and enthusiasm matter much more after that first 2 minutes. It's a nice place to meet people and get past that first 2 minutes.

But given a choice and all else being equal, wouldn't most men over, say, 40, prefer dating women who are substantially younger? It's also a way to "meet men" without being in a place to "meet men" (like a bar). I am at the age where, for health reasons, I don't need a woman unless she is a nurse but when I was 40ish I lived several years with a woman who was 60ish and found nothing about her unattractive that was age related.

I'm in my early 30s, and I've seen women in their 60s who I wouldn't mind a roll in the hay with (if I weren't married).

Of course starting a relationship is different than that - obviously you aren't starting a second family with a woman in her 50s, and there are guys that are after that..

Dating an older man meant no beer pong or silly dancing, but it also meant security and commitment. I gave in and let him off the hook, and he was so grateful.

When I moved to New York right after college, finding a boyfriend was the last thing on my mind. I knew that if he knew I was 22 the conversation would soon be over, and I was enjoying it, despite myself. Two minutes later, I got a text."My name is Michael…in case you forgot." I had forgotten. "I didn't want to blurt out how old I was at dinner after you went on and on about what a big age difference eight years was. " Michael protested."You were supposed to say your real age, like I did! He was so different from the guys my age I 'd met in the city, eager for the drunk bar make-out but far less eager to have a girlfriend. I delayed taking him out with my friends, because I was worried he wouldn't fit in. We went to a dive bar in the Lower East Side with a bunch of my friends.

I’ve been on a lot of dates of late, and in spite of the wide parameters I think I want, and the results of that flimsy formula, I’ve found that my “sweet spot” was smaller than I thought.I initiate contact with men in an age-range of about 3 years younger up to about 8 years older than myself.The potential matches that the site sends me are age appropriate for me, but when I look at the age-range that those men desire, (usually 35-50) I often move past them, knowing I can’t compete with women in their desired range, even though many of those men are as much as 5-8 years older than me!In other words, knowingly sends me matches that are probably not realistic for me to pursue.When I have emailed some of those guys, I never hear back.He didn't notice, but an older guy next to me, slightly balding with a crooked nose, did. We'll see about that," he replied, handing me a shot. We continued to joke back and forth, and despite the fact that I'd just graduated from college and he probably had a decade ago, it seemed we had a lot in common. We stayed deep in conversation until last call, and eventually he asked for my number."You're way too old for me," I said. Before I knew it, we were well into dessert, and I realized I didn't want the dinner to end. My roommate and I would routinely go out and try and get guys to buy us drinks, a practice Michael was not entirely fond of.

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