08 November 2012

Concerning The Sexual and Marriage Markets -- Part III

III.  Isn’t Age Just A Number?

Everybody seems to think that age is but a number.  Yes, but it also has implications on one’s SMV and MMV.  Our society is one that glorifies youth and has built entire industries premised on making people appear younger than they really are.  There’s a few cases where people want to look older than what they really are, such as for false ID cards. But overall, the trend is to want to look and feel “young” for as long as possible.

Indeed I have seen a lot of women place age limits when they’re on the online-dating sites. Many will say something like “nobody over 25, please” or “if you’re old enough to be my dad, don’t message me.” I have also seen where guys have been accused of being ageist—a thirty-something male is shamed and labelled a “sexist pig” because he wants women who are ten years younger instead of women his own age.

Like a lot of things, there are many legitimate reasons behind setting age limits. Both men and women set limits not just based on what they’re attracted to, but also to avoid what they feel would be problems that would arise if they dated outside of that range. And to many people, some of the issues are quite real.

A lot of men set a minimum age. Why? Being seen with someone who’s too young can be damaging socially, or legally. Obviously, such consequences are unpalatable by a great many people.  Here, the SMV may be high, as a lot of girls are seen as being very attractive when they’re 18 and go off to university. The MMV is quite high, as they likely have only a minimum of relationships and sexual experiences.

On the flip-side of the coin are setting maximum ages. Many people don’t want to be seen with a date who’s old enough to be their parents or grandparents. Likewise, many guys would prefer a college co-ed simply because they are at the zenith of their attractiveness and fertility—which is another way of saying “they want someone who is most likely going to give them offspring with the fewest difficulties to the potential mother.” 

Thus, older women in their 30s, 40s, and up are often seen as less-attractive choices, and thus have a lower MMV than a younger woman who is just finishing college.  Chances are quite high that such a woman is amidst or has been through a divorce and thus has baggage. She may also be primarily concerned with trying to start a family even if the man has no intentions of procreating further.

Women need to remember that their fertility is time-limited and tied to age and their looks. As they get older, the chances of them getting pregnant without severe complications decline dramatically.  Men lose fertility, but the loss is far less dramatic, and indeed many men can retain most of their reproductive capacity well into their twilight years.

As a consequence, an older woman’s options are quite limited. Hence, the cougar phenomenon has started to develop. With the aid of various beauty-related industries, older women can try to look sexually-appealing but what they are able to attract will vary based on how often they will “put out” and what they will be willing to do.

The pool of men willing to engage them shrinks as they get older, and yes, that means that older single women, particularly those that are in their mid-30s and older, will have to work harder to get and maintain a man’s attention. Thus, the selectiveness an older woman might have had previously are rendered null.

So, when you see a guy who’s set an age limit, it might behove you to keep in mind that he may have reasons for doing so and such reasons may not be superficial after all.  Particularly if you yourself have set age limits.

Go back to Part II

Go to Part IV

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