Monday, March 24, 2014

In Defense of the Young'uns

I know quite a few women who have been there and done that with younger men and have sworn off them. They say that all the young’uns they encountered turned out to be jerks and so they have washed their hands off dabbling in that dating pool. My response to them has always been that a natural born jerk will always be a jerk, and in my opinion, age has nothing do with a man’s behavior.
Then there are the other women who have had no experience with younger men, but just instantly dismiss them because they are younger and God forbid, that’s a no-no. Which begs the question? – Why is the idea of dating or getting married to a younger man such a no go area to some women?
Imagine a scenario where the correct man of your dreams approaches you, and checks off most things on your list. But ring the alarm because he’s 26 and you’re 28 – Instant grounds for dismissal. And I don’t understand it, because if I ran into such a guy, I would snatch him up instantly. Young’un or not.

Let me just put it out there that I have nothing against dating a younger man. Now, this is a recent development, as the advantage of getting older is that you can afford to go younger and not seem like you are robbing the cradle. As a 30 year old, my ideal range/limit on the lower end is 27 and I can afford to do this now because I’m sure that there are quite a number of mature 27 year old men out there (if I carry torchlight to look for them). As you can see, I would have absolutely no problem dating a man who is 3 years younger than me as long as he can be the man, and is mature. Same applies to men who are older than me too…just be the man and be mature. I have a strong personality so even if you’re 40 years old, if I feel like I can walk over you then it’s a wrap. If I ran into a 27/28 year old who could hold his own, trust and believe that his age would be no hindrance to me. Age is mainly nothing but a number as long as you know how to act like a grown up. So I'm all about giving younger men a fair opportunity, and I promise you all that I’m no Lagos Cougar :-D.
I’m just the type of approach people and treat them as individuals independent of any stereotypes until they show themselves…this approach also applies to younger men. To me, they are still men and will act like a typical man every now and then but until they show their jerkish, immature ways, then they are fair game.

The good news is that these days some ladies are getting hip to the younger men and giving them a fair chance. I’ve seen about 4 marriages in my church where the age difference between the older wives and younger husbands range from 5-3 years. Still thriving, still surviving. In fact, one of them was even 29 when she married her 24 year old husband and I wasn’t even mad at that at allll. Age is just some digits my people. Just the other day, I hung out with my friend and her younger boyfriend and the girl was just shining 32 anyhow in love, cheesiness and happiness, as in she seemed so happy and I was absolutely loving it. The boy is so good to her and if she had discriminated against the guy, she would have missed out on that gem. So, I think that once we learn to let go of some stereotypes and what other people think, we can greatly learn to expand our dating pools and bring on more opportunities for ourselves. All my ladies, oya kukere!

One other thing that fueled my decision to not discriminate against the young’uns is that I realized how some men my age or slightly older stay discriminating against ladies in my age range. You see all these dudes that wait till they are 37 to settle down…and who do they go for when they decide to settle? Odds are they target women under 30. In fact, the other day I was teasing this 33 year old guy that I know who is boo’ed up to some 23 year old girl, and I said dang boy, you had to go all the way down to 23 though? The boy laughed and said “no offense ehn, but I was absolutely not checking for any woman in that 28 and up range”. And then some other guys in the group joined in on the fun talking about “I feel you bro, get them while they are still fresh”. See what I mean? The discrimination is real people, so might as well pitch your tent where people are actually checking for you.

However, I won’t end this post with a rose colored view on dating the young'uns. So I'm just going to acknowlede the challenges of dating a young’un and summarize a few pointers here:
  • I think that the main challenge of dipping in the younger end of the dating pool is opposition from family members. It's like "OMG, our son/brother/nephew/cousin CANNOT marry this woman and her shriveled up eggs". Even if you are 5 months older than a man, his family will probably be against it most especially if they are African. Not to mention being a few years older so I’ll recommend that y’alls age difference should be a secret between you two which you can feel free to reveal after y'all have tied the knot. But before then, please keep it under wraps and between yourselves. One of my family friends lost the “love of his life” because his aunties ranted and rebeled against him marrying the older woman that he really wanted to be with and the boy succumbed to family pressure. And you know what I realized? It’s always women in the family that will be blocking you and that younger man’s love. Like ahn ahn, as a fellow woman, do you not realize how real the struggle is? Smh.
  • One popular concern that I hear about dating younger men is "women age faster than men" and "down the line, I will be looking like his mother". I call bollocks on that one. I highly doubt that you’re going to wrinkle faster than him, or look like his mother in 10 years. Just stay fresh, take care of you (as you should be doing regardless of whether he’s 26 or 40) and you should be fine.
  • And ultimately, you need a young'un with a backbone. If you feel like he’s not the type of young’un that you would respect then don’t even set yourself up. You need a young’un that will stand up to you, call you out on your nonsense and tell you “I might be just 24 but I will put that azz in check” and you will promptly zip your lips and keep quiet. LOL.
So I hope that I have been able to convince and not confuse you regarding your next action when you run across a young’un in the near future. As opposed to saying “God Forbid” and picking race like your life depends on it, why not actually see what the dude is about. You never know, the man might be your future husboo that you would have dismissed because of a 2-year age difference. You just never know!
And that is all she said.