A Lady’s Guide to Being a Cougar

Many women have a specifically revolted reaction to the idea of dating a younger man. We as a society have decided that men should always date women who are younger than they are, or else the terrorists have won. This distinctly contradicts the alleged fact that all my female friends became sexually active at the age of sixteen or seventeen, while all my male friends claim to have been playing the field in middle school. Who exactly were they supposed to have been banging? I call bullshit.

There's no way you're hitting that.

There’s no way you’re hitting that.

Where was I?… Oh, right. Younger men.

Women are scared to date a man younger than them because they think he will be a lumbering, overgrown man-child who will spend all his time playing “Call of Duty” and laughing at the word “duty.” These fears are legitimate; nobody wants to date a guy who doesn’t know how to do his own laundry and spends the night at his mom’s place whenever you have an argument. Similarly, you don’t want a man whose main sexual experiences were with his hand and a bottle of Jergens.

I personally became used to dating slightly younger people early on in life. I was born in the summer, and could have started kindergarten a month after turning five. However, when my parents were pondering whether to start me in school as the youngest person in my class, I imagine they glanced across the room at me, where I was no doubt engaged in my favorite activity – collecting pictures of unicorns, spreading them out on the floor, and motionlessly staring at them for hours on end, occasionally rearranging them at my whimsy.

Self-portrait, age 5.

Self-portrait, age 5.

Having decided that I was a failure as an organism and would imminently self-destruct were I forced to interact with others, they waited until the next year to start me in kindergarten. As a result, I was about a year older than the youngest people in my class for my entire school career. The people with whom I interacted most regularly were, by and large, younger than me. I had to take what I could get, is what I’m saying.

I’ve never dated anyone significantly younger than me; I’ve always followed the Rule of Seven. (I just made that name up, right now. Like it?) The rule for how young you can go is as follows:

(Your age x .5) + 7 = Age of the youngest person you are allowed to date without it being skeevy.

This seems arbitrary, but it kind of makes total sense for just about any age. For example, I’m twenty-four years old. 24 divided by 2 is 12, plus 7 is 19. Therefore, it is totally creepy for me to date someone younger than nineteen. Let’s say you’re only eighteen. You’d be restricted to 16+, which makes sense with age of consent laws in every state. If you’re sixty, you have a little more leeway – thirty-seven and up is open to you. If you’re fourteen, you’d better not be dating anyone younger than fourteen. In fact, if you’re fourteen, just don’t even worry about it. Go ride your bike.

You are but a wee babe.

You are but a wee babe.

Stick to these guidelines, and you can’t go wrong. And why not go a little younger? If you think about it, it makes biological sense. On average, women have a life expectancy of about five years greater than that of men. Date someone five years younger than you, and you don’t have to worry about dying alone! It’s the little things, ain’t it?

In the end, age shouldn’t be a deciding factor in a potential date. Are you really going to let a few years’ difference ruin what could turn out to be the most loving and fulfilling relationship of your life? Are you going to turn your nose up at someone who could be an amazing blanket fort builder, dick-shaped pancake maker, and all-around breath of fresh air? You would probably date someone older if you truly loved that person, so why not date someone younger and see where it goes? As long as no one is being taken advantage of or manipulated, and everything is well within the bounds of legality, you’re good to go.

If you need further proof, say no more…

ezramiller2012-Liam-HemsworthAnton YelchinNicholas_Hoult

Alleluia. Amen.

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