Dating Question

First, I understand being attracted to people within a specific age group. We don’t chose who we are attracted to. I prefer men around my age, I love the shared history/popular culture. Here’s what I don’t get. On the dating site I use, something like 90% of the men (or more) say they are interested in women 20 years younger than themselves, but will only go as high as a year or two older, if that. A 60 year old will typically say he’s looking for women 40 – 60.

So they’re saying a woman should give a guy 20 years older than herself a shot, when a woman a year or two older is out of the question for them, never mind someone 20 years older. She should date someone they wouldn’t consider dating, basically.

Oh wait. I just realized women do this to men regarding height. I have to out myself in fact, I don’t want to pretend I’m a better person than I am, I have similar, unfair height preferences. I want to date people my height or a little less, but they can be much taller. It’s a similar bias, isn’t it, so who am I to talk??

PS: Another dating profile pet peeve. Don’t say you look young or your friends say you look young. Either you do and we’ll see that in your pictures, or you don’t (and you’re don’t know that you don’t) and then you just look sad. Besides, it’s okay to look your age. Unless you’re hoping to date someone 20 years younger, I guess, but my advice still stands.

I bought these stairs to help my poor arthritic Finney (who doesn’t prefer the younger generations) climb up on the couch. The other day I saw Bleecker in this odd sleeping position, draped down the stairs. So cute. That’s Finney in the lower left, looking up and thinking, “WTF?”

Bleecker Draped on the Steps

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

3 thoughts on “Dating Question

  1. Stacy,
    A very interesting post and question. Have you seen Christian Rudder’s new book “Dataclysm”? (He’s one of the founders of OkCupid.) Check out this chart of what ages men and women find attractive:

    Kind of funny, but funny sad rather than funny ha-ha.

    I must admit that I never gave a lot of thought to any bias I might have had for height–at 5’3″ it’s very hard for me to find any men who are shorter!

  2. I’m also 5’3″, so it almost never comes up, but I felt I had to be honest and admit that I felt that bias, the second I thought of it!

    That chart was hysterical, thanks for posting it. I also liked that while men may find girls in their 20’s attractive, they still tended to email women closer to their age.

  3. Hello, fellow shortie! Tee hee. I always say at least I fit in planes better than most people–now if only I had the money to travel.

    I have shown that Dataclysm chart to so many people and everyone laughs. No one discounts it, though.

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