Why don't you just date younger men?
It is often put to me that what we older women need is.. younger men. The two major arguments are the carnal and the demographic.
As a colleague recently asserted across the table from several single planktons. "Women over 35 are their sexual peak, and well, lets face it, men of that age will basically fuck anything"
Whilst you choke on your chai latte, I will move onto the demographic factors. Here in Australia the Man Drought is an entrenched concept. Thanks to Bernard Salt we have the hot deflation index (HDI). Briefly, women under 34 and men over 40 have such a glut of available members of the opposite sex that they get an inflated idea of their own attractiveness. To quote;
"This oversupply of single women relative to single men, especially from the 40s onwards must have an impact on men's self perception. All that attention from women would go to their head. Where others might see a paunchy, balding middle-aged man, he sees a modern day Don Juan who is quite irresistitble to women"
I venture to add a third argument, from a personal perspective. Many of we middle aged people have not addressed our issues of self-love appropriately. Hence out there, in the dwindling bachelor market, (along with those who find themselves irresistible), are a fair number who can't commit, who are looking for others to make up what is lacking in their lives and are continually disappointed, or who using sex as a form of drug - to relieve stress boredom and self esteem issues.
So here, in a nutshell is my argument. If my ernest attempts at forming a mutually respectful pair bond with a man of my own age are going to result in basically being used as an upaid hooker, or having my investment of love thrown back in my face. I eschew the paunchy bald egotist for something younger, firmer, easier on the eye... what's the worst that can happen?
Then last week an invitation to "Toy Boy Speed dating" dropped into my inbox. I hastily crammed those lustful thoughts right back in the pandora's box where they belong reasoning that $89 (60 Quid) was way to much for such a hiding to nothing. Yet insistently, a day before the event, a half price offer came through, and my resistence and buckled in the face of mounting curiosity.
So it was that I found, paraded before me, twelve eager, good looking young men. The event certainly had a frissant borne from the spirit of experimentation. Both [sets of] parties were out to size up the market.
The clumsy chat up lines were sweet, often complimenting me on my physical attributes "you have a nice smile" or "your accent is such a turn-on". I've forgotten, but is this how we got chatted up in our 20s? no need for them to feign professional interest a woman's career, or big themselves up with oblique reference to their house/boat/bike/car/expense account?, nobody dredged up sordid details of their last horrific relationship...
But even by the time I put the keys in the door of my single girl oasis/cocoon I was acknowledging what was really going on. In putting myself forward for such an event, I was offering sex. There wasn't, and never would be any chance of a meaningful relationship there.
Within 24 hours, all the men I ticked had got back to me, asking me out for a drink. Including one whom I seriously fancy. Only one of them honest enough to say he was testing the waters and would be dating many women at once.
And suddenly, I had cold feet. I can't trust myself to treat it with the playful abandon it deserves. Part of my experience as a sexual being is a need to truly love desire and admire the person I am sleeping with. I need to respect their, and my own, human dignity.
For now at least, I think I have to accept toy boy dating as an end in itself. I paid my 30 quid and was openly chatted up and lusted after by twenty and thirty somethings for an hour or so. One walked me to the bus stop, and planted the sweetest, softest kiss on my cheek. And in that moment, I was walking on air.