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  • Hubert Marlin

Older Women and Younger Men idylls


Why can’t we marry younger men? I date them all the time,” Martine Bergossi, owner of Alternatives, a second-hand couture shop in Paris, said to The Washington Post. “It’s normal to see men with younger women. So, it’s rather great to see the opposite.” Her sentiments were echoed by Karin Lewin, an artist with a studio in Paris’ Montmartre district: “Did men ask anybody when they started marrying younger women? Who sets the rules?” Although this liberal and laissez-faire attitude toward love and lust is considered de rigueur in Paris, there are some considerations to keep in mind before plunging in the melodrama.

“Women seems generally more emotionally mature than men, since they tend to get hurt more often in this kind of scenario. It works if it’s purely sexual, but the woman has to be upfront about her feelings if she wants it to turn into more than just sex.” timing has a lot to do with the success of an older-woman-younger-man pairing. It typically won’t work if she’s in her 30s and he’s in his 20s, because at that stage of life, there tends to be a huge gap in shared goals. women want families, while young men fresh out of their teen years want to play some more. “it works more often where the woman is in her late 40s and the man is in his 30s. Because at this point, the woman has either already had children or decided that she doesn’t want them, and she can find a man who shares that view,”. In addition, young fathers disappointed by their previous relationship can find comfort raising their young children with a more experienced woman. While younger men sometimes feel proud to lift up older women to affirm their maturity and their strength, or score on a fantasy of their youth since some may had have lust for their teacher or others, older women who successfully secure a relationship with younger men beside sex do not feel less proud, because they are challenging not only younger women by showing them that they are still rocking, but at the same time they are challenging social norms which make it normal for older men to have younger women but rarely the opposite. Meanwhile, according to a very small study published in the Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, relationships in which the woman is at least 10 years older than the man found positive attitudes among the couple themselves, but their union was also informed by a fear of stigma from outsiders. “It’s a relationship like any other, despite what society might say,” Nichole R. Proulx, lead author of the study, said to The New York Times.But judgment persists, and according to the study, it leads women to feel insecure about their age and aging in general — a fact that’s especially poignant considering a large age gap in a married couple has been linked to higher mortality in women“Couples with younger husbands violate social norms and thus suffer from social sanctions,” Sven Drefahl of the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research said to HuffPost. “Since marrying a younger husband deviates from what is regarded as normal, these couples could be regarded as outsiders and receive less social support. This could result in a less joyful and more stressful life, reduced health, and finally, increased mortality.”Marriage is more beneficial for men than for women -- at least for those who want a long life. Previous studies have shown that men with younger wives live longer. While it had long been assumed that women with younger husbands also live longer, in a new study Sven Drefahl from the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock, Germany, has shown that this is not the case. Instead, the greater the age difference from the husband, the lower the wife's life expectancy. Related to life expectancy choosing a wife is easy for men -- the younger the better. The mortality risk of a husband who is seven to nine years older than his wife is reduced by eleven percent compared to couples where both partners are the same age. Conversely, a man dies earlier when he is younger than his spouse.For years, researchers have thought that this data holds true for both sexes. They assumed an effect called "health selection" was in play; those who select younger partners are able to do so because they are healthier and thus already have a higher life expectancy. It was also thought that a younger spouse has a positive psychological and social effect on an older partner and can be a better caretaker in old age, thereby helping to extend the partner's life."These theories now have to be reconsidered," says Drefahl. "It appears that the reasons for mortality differences due to the age gap of the spouses remain unclear." Using data from almost two million Danish couples, Drefahl was able to eliminate the statistical shortcomings of earlier research, and showed that the best choice for a woman is to marry a man of exactly the same age; an older husband shortens her life, and a younger one even more so.According to Drefahl's study, published May 12 2010 in the journal Demography, women marrying a partner seven to nine years younger increase their mortality risk by 20 percent. Hence, "health selection" can't be true for women; healthy women apparently don't go chasing after younger men. While many studies on mate selection show that women mostly prefer men the same age, most of them end up with an older husband.

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