30 dating 50
So that’s what this column, Undressed, is about: gender, social norms, dating rules — and what happens when we break them.When I was a junior in college, a woman called “The Princeton Mom” wrote into our school newspaper telling undergraduate women to “Find a husband on campus before you graduate.”“Forget about having it all, or not having it all, leaning in or leaning out,” she said.By 55, they’ll send more than half their messages to men at least 4 years their junior.It appears this age gap is largely driven by dudes.Harrison Ford being an exception for me as well though, I have to say.
But what I soon realized was that sometimes the best way to date is to go off script.
But let’s not pretend that we, as a culture, don’t worship at the altar of youth. Don’t get me wrong, there are advantages in a 45-year-old guy. He’s got the job and the home and the car, and been divorced with a kid already.
If you’re over the age of 40 and have ever said, “But I’m told I look five years younger than my age”, then you’re not immune to it yourself. And nobody has more choices than a 28-year-old woman. So if a woman finds it more appealing to just step into that world — to jump from the prolonged adolescence of the late 20’s into full-fledged settled-down womanhood — that could make sense.
The older-woman-younger-man combo is significantly more rare (appearing in less than one-third of all conversations), and in only 12% of these is the woman at least five years older.
Men tend to message women significantly younger than they are.
I decided to find out by pulling data on Ok Cupid messaging between straight daters from 2013 to today — so I looked at over 10 million “successful” conversations, defined as convos that included at least at four messages back and forth with contact exchange.