Around about the same time cougardom exploded into the mainstream, social scientists became increasingly immersed in researching age-dissimilar couples where the woman is the older party.Prompted by this shift in the demographics of modern relationships, a team of sociologists at the University of Maine set about investigating the reality of older women wedded to younger men.After pulling data from the National Survey of Family Growth, the Canadian initiative found that approximately 13 percent of sexually active women between 35 and 44 have slept with a man at least 5 years their junior.Not only did they discover that middle aged women who’d been previously married were more likely to seek a younger mate, they also showed that older woman/younger man relationships are rarely brief flings (on average they last for 2 years).In the native New Yorker’s opinion, older women are routinely subject to much stricter norms when it comes to picking sexual partners. Yet it’s not all cradle snatching and oedipal gloom for older women dating younger men.“For most women, aging means a humiliating process of gradual sexual disqualification,” she scathingly wrote, “society is much more permissive about aging men.” Marine builds on Sontag’s earlier woes: “Many people are still shocked to see an older woman with a younger man,” she says, “they might think ‘what if that was my mother, or my son! In fact, research carried out last summer by Mc Gill University’s Milaine Alarie and Jason Carmichael concludes otherwise.
So, if women from all walks of life are ignoring the stigma and romancing with the more youthful cohort of the male population, it begs the question; what’s the appeal?
The now well-known term wasn’t a reference to the Chinese calendar; rather, it was a bordering-on-crass idiom coined to define 40-plus women with a predilection for younger gentlemen.
Although the US-based magazine reasoned that the cougar-craze was a fad destined for cultural oblivion, the article offered up an intriguing explanation for the newfound popularity of older woman/younger man relationships.
You don’t need to be too imaginative to picture what the benefits of an older woman/younger man relationship might be.
If you’re struggling for ideas, there’s a slew of blogs and websites that testify to the plus sides for both women and men.