Age Ain't Nothing But a Number

Tuesday, 04 January 2011 12:10 Written by  Lauren Jackson

Age ain't nothing but a number / Throwing down ain't nothing but a thang / This lovin' I have for you / It'll never change…  -Aaliyah

Not to take you away from your walk down memory lane, but I think Aaliyah said it best with her classic hit, “Age Ain’t Nothin But A Number.” Today, women are taking this exact point of view when dating men outside of their age bracket. As a matter of fact, most surveys will show that many women in their mid-20s or early 30s prefer dating men who are considerably older. Now nothing is wrong with this concept by any means, but it does speak to the notion that younger men must be lacking some quality that their older male counterparts possess.

datingLet’s face it: It’s no secret that women mature faster then men. No offense gentlemen, but intellectually, women typically love to engage in more sophisticated conversations, go traveling and they have a better understanding of who they are and where they want to be in their lives at very young ages. While this is not to say that all young men do not possess these same qualities, the vast majority of them, in my opinion, do not. And although during our 20s, and sometimes early 30s, we all go through the ever so popular mind numbing period of trying to “find ourselves,” it can be quite frustrating at times to be in a relationship with someone going through this same struggle. Sometimes you just may want to be with someone that has already made it so that they can somewhat help guide you and find your niche in the world. And having this trait often helps give older men the upper hand when trying to capture a relationship with a younger woman.

Looking at the qualities alone, let’s compare the differences between what older men and younger men bring to the table when it comes to entering a relationship:

1. Better Conversation. Having more experience in life can be a turn on for women. Discussing topics from politics to everyday life brings a certain intellectual fulfillment to the female mind.

2. Financial Stability. (In my Kanye voice) Now I ain’t sayin’ she a gold digger, but she a messing with no broke—I think you know the rest! This is another major factor that makes dating an older man appealing. What girl doesn’t like to be wined and dined sometimes? By dating older men, younger women may get the chance to see the world from a new point of view without putting a major dent in her personal funds. Not to mention, the older gentleman she is dating more likely has his own place, is secure in a reliable job/career and hopefully has no one to answer to but himself.

3. Secure in their Manhood. You know when they say that once you’ve reached a certain age, the light bulb above your head finally lights up? This is supposed to mean that a fair amount of clarity should be found in a person’s life once they’re aged a little. I think this would be the case for many men past their prime. Being secure in one’s manhood can mean that you are content with the plan and purpose for your life. You no longer feel the competition with peers or society. You are solely focused on being a better man, a good provider and devoted lover to your partner.

4. More Experience can lead to Enhanced Intimacy. Not trying to be overly provocative, but having an older partner with a bit more experience in knowing how to lovingly caress, gently hold or simply whisk a woman off her feet can be beneficial. A good sense of intimacy is one aspect that only gets better with age.

5. Higher Levels of Patience. Typically speaking, as we get older, our level of patience tends to increase as time passes. The usual arguments, pettiness and all out immature ways seem to be on the decline when entering a romantic relationship. One would assume by possessing this kind of relationship, communication amongst both partners is open and no conversation is off limits. Even when disagreements may come into the picture, having a great amount of patience and respect for one another can help each partner sometimes agree to disagree and move on to their next venture together.

Yes, having an older partner definitely comes with some great benefits. In many ways, it allows the young woman to be strong and independent, yet vulnerable at the same time. And even though we take great pleasure in providing and taking care of ourselves, it is reassuring to know that one could rely on her partner from time to time if she very well needed to do so. It’s like having a really good bottle of wine—it always gets better with time.

Now sure, the grass may not be greener on the other side. It could very well be the case that an older partner may be worse than dating a younger man. I’m sure we all know a few older men who still have the mindset of a 2-year-old and are waiting for young successful women like ourselves to take care of them versus the other way around.

Another downside is that sometimes having more experience than their younger partner can also come across as being possessive or condescending. Seeing how an older partner may have a broader point of view of the world, he may try to diminish his younger counterpart’s ambitions and dreams. Not to mention, this could be especially frustrating if the older gentleman is not where they "should" be in terms of development, career and economic status.

But remember we are speaking from the general point of view. When it comes down to it, age really ain’t nothing but a number. Acting one’s age versus his shoe size–once again referencing musical quotes–could in fact lead to an even more frustrating experience in itself. But when entering any relationship, a woman should always be on her P’s and Q’s, always reading in between the lines. What a man is really bringing to the table, regardless of age, is always the number one question.

Until the next time stay blessed, beautiful and divinely favored!

Photography by GMO Photo Editor Billy Montgomery

Lauren Jackson

Lauren Jackson

Lauren Jackson is a GMO contributor.

She can be contacted at