Can you be called a cougar if you are the one being pursued?
For several years now I have been saying that I prefer dating younger men. I find that men my age are often single for a reason. Large generalization I realize, but go ahead and prove me wrong.
Lately a young man has started showing interest in me, and when I say young, I mean young. We have almost a decade between us, but he isn't at all bothered by this and continues to do all he can to see me. The attention is great, and I admire his confidence and at times it even brings out the shy little girl in me, feeling less like his older sister.
See, the thing that is so great about young men chasing older women is that they do so because they think we know what we want, and that we are emotionally mature. They find the younger girls to be unstable and have too many "issues". In contrast, the older fellas tend to label any woman over the age of 25 as "bitter, set in her ways, independent (not sure why that is a bad thing), full of issues, etc." They tend to like the younger lassies who will think everything they say is brilliant and not talk back.
Do we have a problem here? Why are the two genders at war with their own age bracket? It just doesn't seem right that a man and a woman in their early 30s aren't finding compatibility with one another. At that age we most likely have finished our schooling, no longer live with our parents, have perhaps done some travel, are working in a stable career. Why are we not wanting to be with our equal in life experiences?
I have some ideas about this, mainly that a lot of women get more confident with age, whereas men seem to lose some of this. Men may be confident in many aspects of their lives, but I think the stigma of being single makes them feel less accomplished. Guys seem to measure success by specific achievements; good job, nice car, cute girl. When they don't have all those things they feel like failures to some degree, and lose confidence as they continue in the struggle to tackle all three. This lack of confidence makes it harder for them to feel secure in who they are, especially when trying to represent themselves to accomplished and intelligent ladies.
Women seem to have the opposite response to age. Sure, we struggle with wondering why we are still single, but we often channel that focus towards improving ourselves to become happier and more desirable. We keep getting better with age, and then the confidence increases because we know we are quality catches. This in turn attracts the young lads, making us stand out from all the silly girls chasing after them and texting them 24/7.
So is there an answer to all of this? Are older women better off dating younger men, and older men better off dating the younger ladies? I'm not sure, because despite everything I have just written, dating is not black and white and at the end of the day it is not about age, but about finding your most compatible match and someone who makes you want to be a better person.