Differences in age preferences for mates can stem from evolutionary mating strategies and age preferences in sexual partners may vary cross culturally.There are also alternative social theories for age differences in relationships as well as suggested reasons for 'alternative' age-hypogamous relationships.Age disparity in sexual relationships is the difference in ages of individuals in sexual relationships.
According to the rule, for example, a 30-year-old should be with a partner who is at least 22, while a 50-year-old’s dating partner must be at least 32 to not attract (presumed) social sanction. Does it match our scientific understanding of age-related preferences for dating? Researchers Buunk and colleagues (2000) asked men and women to identify the ages they would consider when evaluating someone for relationships of different levels of involvement.
People reported distinct age preferences for marriage; a serious relationship; falling in love; casual sex; and sexual fantasies. Based on the figures Buunk and colleagues (2000) provided (and thus the numbers are only informed approximations), I replotted their data superimposing the max and min age ranges defined by the half-your-age-plus-7 rule.
There are certainly ways for older women to conceive children, but most men who want families tend to try and date women who are younger than 40.
Aside from that scenario, however, is there any reason that a 30-year-old woman can find love with a 37-year old and not a 44-year-old? Knowing that there are men of that age who are in great shape, physically attractive, interesting and successful is there a reason to categorically exclude these men? And while most people aren’t as attractive as these, it is certainly possible to meet someone significantly older who is sexy and attractive. Women in their 50’s will often narrowly restrict their dating range because they have a fear of meeting and falling in love with an older man – and then having to deal with his health issues.
It is a commonly accepted idea that men prefer the company of younger women, while women prefer men who are older.
This is also in keeping with Parental Investment Theory, which maintains that men are attracted to women who advertise signs of fertility — that is, youth.And in a 1993 study that analyzed over 1,000 personal ads, researchers found that women typically sought older men, and men typically sought younger women.Similarly, in a 1994 study using a nationally representative sample of single Americans younger than 35, the results revealed that women were significantly more willing than men to marry someone older by five years; conversely, men were significantly more willing than women to marry someone who was younger by five years.A study released in 2003 by the United Kingdom's Office for National Statistics concluded that the proportion of women in England and Wales marrying younger men rose from 15% to 26% between 19.The study also showed a higher divorce rate as the age difference rose when the woman was older and a lower divorce rate as the age difference rose when the man was older.With some quick math, the rule provides a minimum and maximum partner age based on your actual age that, if you choose to follow it, you can use to guide your dating decisions.