At 42, Epiphany is one of the blog’s most senior Experimental Daters, and as such she can provide a unique take on the AGE Experiment. Find out why she sees age as simply ‘just a number’ …
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx
Being the oldest experimental dater (I think!!) it seems appropriate to make a comment about dating and age differences…
As you will be able to see from my experimental dater profile I am the rather decrepit-sounding age of 42 – the same age as Tinder says I am. It doesn’t say that I have three children, the oldest of whom is 21, but my tagline does say:
‘Mostly eccentric, often mischievous, occasionally impetuous but rarely dull. I am also intelligent, articulate, witty, voluptuous and adventurous……’
I have been using Tinder for about 4-6 weeks since a close friend foolishly showed me the app, and in that time I have been inundated (& I do not use the word lightly!) with matches from younger men.
Initially I had set my age parameters from 34 to 46.
When I was younger, all of my previous relationships had been with older me; including my ex-husband who was 7 years older than me. Since my divorce I’ve found that I am not only more attracted to, but also found attractive by, younger men.
I think I’m quite young at heart – my musical taste, style and professional status (student!) means I have more in common with younger men and to be honest after 20-odd years of being in relationships I just want something light-hearted with someone who knows how to have fun!
I felt slightly guilty swiping my first 34 year-old, a bit conceited, arrogant and vain too if I’m honest…
He was just my type; dark hair, gorgeous, bit rough around the edges (Heathcliff-esque) with a cheeky smile! What on earth would an attractive man eight years my junior possibly see in me?! In the end I rationalised it by reminding myself this was Tinder.
He would never know that I liked him.
There is no way he would ever swipe me back………………………but he did.
(He became my very own Scarlet Pimpernel; but that’s a whole other story :))
And then so did several more.
However my friend informed me that I should use the rule of ‘half your age plus 7 years’….
So I dutifully lowered my minimum age to 28. If I had been surprised by how many 30-somethings had swiped me, I have been amazed by how many 20-somethings have!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Bearing in mind I’d dismiss 80% of them for looking twelve, or wearing a cap backwards, or being called Wayne / Kev etc, or stroking a heavily sedated tiger.
Even the ones I did think looked alright I would have to look at twice and after thinking ‘oh no way too young’, I would consciously think ‘oh he’ll never know’ and finally say ‘fuck it’ close my eyes & swipe right!!!!
I felt like a letch!!!!
So, ok, I’m possibly trying to justify why I chose to swipe, yet I’m surprised / flattered when they choose me?! Yes of course 😉
My point however, is not just that I’ve matched with more men younger than me than men of my own age (or older) but that I’ve had far more successful matches with them too.
Perhaps you could assume a younger guy’s rationale for swiping an older woman is far more sexually motivated; (without exception they have all commented on experience, confidence and knowing what I want). But actually I think that lasciviousness is a element present in every age group.
In regard to ‘successful’ matches, I have to admit I have not met anybody older than me.
(I did have one date arranged with a slightly older man (43) that didn’t actually happen but that also is another story!!)
This may be seen as a self-fulfilling prophecy as I have openly admitted I find younger men attractive but I have tried to chat to men closer to my age and found them to be dull, frequently bitter and actually more immature than the younger men I’ve chatted to!
Ironically, I am more than aware that if this post were written by a man wanting to date girls 5 – 14 years younger than him, I know exactly what I would be thinking!!
Indeed I have had a mixed reaction from my friends; some jealous, some I think secretly disapproving but most pleased for me. I’m not sure I would even tell my mum or sister that I have used a dating app let alone been talking to men as young as 25!
Interestingly I’ve actually discussed appropriate dating age with my 21 year old daughter; we used to have an informal rule that I wouldn’t date anyone closer to her age than mine.
After a brief discussion about Tinder and one particular 28 yearol;d whom I had been chatting to, we came to the agreement that she just wanted me to be happy but not to discuss it any further.
It would appear that I am the one more concerned with age than any of the men with whom I have matched.
Certainly any questions I have put to my correspondents with regard to the difference, have been met solidly with the response; ‘Age? It is just a number’.
- Experimental Dater Number Eight – Epiphany (30blinddates.wordpress.com)
- Tinder: the app that’s changing the way singletons meet and fall in love (theguardian.com)