Dating man much younger

A month or so ago, I stopped seeing a much younger guy.

Because he's only 23, I went into it without any expectations.

My friends and family have always gotten giddy when I’ve told them about a new love interest. And when I tell them about my current boyfriend, and the saucy, yet sweet, tale of how our holidays in Portugal collided and a transatlantic relationship ensued, they practically swoon. Sometimes, they do this weird winking affirmation thing, but it’s always something. By now, I’ve learned that this is both unfair and sexist.

But there’s one part of our origin story that I always save for last.“So, he has this great job in marketing, and we both have a degree in journalism, and he’s well-traveled, and — oh yeah — he’s 24,” I say. If my boyfriend were just a couple of years younger, or even significantly , than I am, the “age thing” (as I call it) wouldn’t even be a thing. The 43-year-old supermodel recently received flak for dating a man 13 years her junior.

(Luckily, she has plenty to say in response to her critics.) Meanwhile, Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Robin Wright, Kim Catrall, Mariah Carey, Susan Sarandon, and Demi Moore (who also happens to have dated Klum’s current partner) also know what I’m talking about.

The sexist criticism of older woman / younger man relationships are as old as time, and Klum — who seems to have a smart, sophisticated 30-year-old boyfriend — is just the most recent casualty of this double standard.

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Fortunately, that’s changing as more older-woman and younger-man couplings make headlines.

But, most importantly, I realized that I have learned from my life that the rewards of truly connecting with another person -- even if for a limited amount of time -- are always worth it. Don't spend your time worrying about where it's going.

I think one reason it was so stress-free and enjoyable is because I was present in each moment.

A longer span of time before he’s reaching for the Viagra.

Sure, you’ll have dinner dates, but also be ready for, say, a 10-mile hike one weekend followed by an indie rock concert the next.

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