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Relationship expert Susan Winter said, “I find it amusing that there’s an equation for the ‘optimal’ age gap in love.While formula’s seem as though they have some kind of scientific credence, the truth is that two resonant souls will find each other (regardless of their ages).” Whether there are any rules we should follow when looking for a potential mate, Winter said, “Rules no longer apply - there are no rules in love except to follow your heart.” Cute.
That comes from the notion that would prefer to be someone like Hugh Hefner, who has literally made a living bedding girls who are more than half his age.
Well, while old men will, seemingly, always have a little soft spot for an attractive young lady, new research published in seems to squash that belief, finding that, as men age, yes, they do maintain an interest in younger females—but they're sexually interested in women their own age, too!
Some celebrities - think Leonardo Di Caprio - take this to extremes with a roster of 20-something models regularly appearing on their arm, but do you know where the saying comes from?
It turns out to be relatively well established, dating back more than 100 years to a book by Max O’Rell written in 1901, and the 1951 play The Moon is Blue.
Even with men broadening their age range, however, it's rare for older men to actually have any sexual relations with younger women.
In hindsight, men, no matter the age, seem to be flirty with women of all ages.“Socially speaking in the western world, women have been granted liberty to unite with men five to 15 years older without anyone batting an eye.Conversely, when a man chooses an older mate he’s apt to encounter judgement and discrimination,” Winter told us.But does it stand up to scrutiny, or is it just a baseless rule perpetuated by men who want to justify dating younger, and less mature, women?We asked three relationship experts to weigh in on the rule - and their responses were surprising.For Russo, “It is more important to look at the life stage someone is in to see if your values are similar than to base your decision on chronological age.” However, she “could see the rule working out much better for men than women,” because “chances are a 30-year-old man dating a 22-year-old woman would be a much better match than a 30-year-old woman and a 22-year-old guy, as men typically lag behind women in maturity and relationship ready-ness.” But Russo also thinks it is important to remember, “Many people have very different priorities, so this rule is not one-size-fits-all and does not guarantee a good match.” As for the endurance of the rule, Russo thinks it may have something to do with men being attracted to younger women.She said, “one reason why this may have endured is because men are generally more attracted to younger women and would like a rule that makes them feel it is acceptable to date younger.” So basically men are to blame.The original quote, taken from Her Royal Highness, Woman: And His Majesty Cupid, is as follows: “I heard the other day a very good piece of advice, which I should like to repeat here, as I endorse it thoroughly: A man should marry a woman half his age, plus seven.Try it at whatever age you like, and you will find it works very well, taking for granted all the while that, after all, a man as well as a woman is the age that he looks and feels.” Diminishing his credibility, in the next paragraph, O’Rell gives readers the advice: “Never marry a woman richer than you, or one taller than you, or one older than you.” So despite the approval and support from De Alto, the rule originally repeated by O’Rell seems significantly outdated - in real life, but especially in the anything-goes world of celebrity dating.While age is truly just a number, successful significant relationships are based on mutual understanding and connection.” She continued, “I’ve seen a few anomalies where a large age gap didn’t get in the way of a lasting connection, but often times, it can lead to frustrations and the end of a relationship.“Rules are made to be broken in certain cases, but it’s not a bad start to set some parameters.” However, how much can we really rely on a rule written from the perspective of an early 20th-century male?