Do We Turn Off Men Our Own Age Without Realizing It?

By Michelle Cove

BruceEmmaIt’s easy to judge guys our age who date younger women. We call them players and dogs (Example A, Bruce Willis and his new, younger squeeze-right).  And we get mad because it confirms our beliefs that men only care about looks and youth, and would happily pass up womanly wisdom for an immature mind with a plenty mature body.

But you know, there are two sides to every story. There may be another reason these guys are opting for hanging out with our younger sisters.

Don’t Let The Ticking of Your Biological Clock
Drown Out Your Wonderful Personality.

Truth is, women in their thirties know what they want and are tired of playing silly games to get it. We like to cut to the chase. But men can misinterpret our direct no nonsense behavior for something else.

Several men in their 30s that I know tell me they find it challenging to date women their own age because they seem to be in such a rush to get married and start a family. The men end up feeling like they’re on a job interview, rather than out with a fun, cool woman who is trying to decide if he’s worth a second date.

So, Ok if your clock is ticking, put it on snooze. Seriously, relax. You’re not going to get there any faster by railroading a candidate with a lot of potential. Instead, ask him what kind of music he likes and bite your tongue when you get the urge to ask him about his financial plans for the next ten years. And please, hold back on the obvious ones about kids and buying a house.

To illustrate my point, Danny, 35, put it like this: “It’s hard to get to know a woman on a first date when she’s not asking questions about you that are specific; they’re really vague and it’s clear that I’m supposed to be passing some kind of test. I’m trying to prove I’ll be a committed dad before I even know if I like this woman. I mean, come on, this is supposed to be the romantic period.”

Stefan, 37, said, “Women my age seem to be in a hurry. And the problem with being in a hurry is that it’s important for anybody getting into a relationship to make sure that the person they are with satisfies their needs. People who hurry tend to overlook some of the important things, because they’ve shortened their list to a small number of essentials. As long as those essentials are there, they consider the relationship to be acceptable.”

Pretend You’re 20 Again

C’mon relax, show him your goofy, wild side. Let him see how awful it would be to miss out on another moment with wonderful you. Leave him wanting more, not wanting to run for the hills. And nothing sends a man to seek higher ground faster than a first date who slips in the “K” word, no matter how nonchalant (and no matter how great a guy he is).

Yikes! Remember that guy who after your first date asked you what you were doing next Saturday because he’d love to have you be his date to a family picnic? Yeah, him. Don’t be that guy.  There’s plenty of time to do your “due diligence” on the “how do you feel about children” convo a few dates down. Call it risk management.

You Need To Get to Know Him Too

Go into a date, or a relationship, looking for a steady paycheck and not a life partner, and you are asking for trouble. People live a long time nowadays and you don’t want to be shackled to a guy you’d rather knock over board than knock knees with. Take your time to get to know him, not his list of pros and cons. Get to know HIM.

Will he want to go skiing with you, or curl up in front of the boob tube after a day of work and howl at Big Bang Theory with you? Does he appreciate a good sense of humor or a woman with a fire in her belly? And if your clock is ticking consider this: those first few months pulling diaper duty, you don’t want to be in the trenches with a guy who drives you nuts. You want a buddy who understands you and has your back more than anything. So taking the time to get to know the guy attached to the financial plan plays a big part in your future domestic bliss.

Michelle Cove is the Director for Seeking Happily Ever After, a feature-length documentary about why there are more single 30-something women than ever and whether women are redefining happily ever after. See www.seekinghappilyeverafter.com. She is also writing a companion book that is “a feel-great guide to being single while seeking your own happily-ever-after” (Tarcher, 2010)

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Watch this “behind the scenes” clip for Michelle’s Seeking Happily Ever After

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