The competition for quality men – Why May /December romances are on the rise.
My brain is hardwired to process numbers, facts and data…. and rarely, (if ever) allows itself to drift into the “land of snake oil, and make believe” …or what most pople refer too as the “less exact sciences”. In the family of ‘guesswork sciences’ you will find psychology, sociology, and generally any area of study that isn’t capable of generating one correct provable answer to a question. Before you say it…Yes, I do have a degree in economics which I agree falls under the heading of “guesswork science” but in my defense, my real interest has always been on the quantitative side of that discipline (and never the theoretical side). It’s what I talk about, it’s what I blog about, it’s what I do for a living, and when I dream at night … my dreams follow the exact same pattern.
Looking back, I can truthfully say that I have only cared about why people do the things they do, act the way they act, like the things they like, or respond to things the way they do… just long enough to figure out how to construct a statistical model able to accurately predict those choices within an acceptable margin or error.
That all changed last Sunday when I met up the group of friends I ski with every winter as we hunkered down during a wonderful afternoon brunch to try and map out our travel plans for this winter. As we sat talking two of my girlfriends who are both about my age (25/26) were bringing me up to speed with their love lives and other pertinent red hot gossip. In prior years it had become customary for my single girlfriends to complain about who they were seeing and to bemoan the critical shortage of high quality available men. As I began to fortify myself with a third glass of wine … they got excited looks on their faces and thanked me for ‘breaking the age barrier’. You see, last winter during one of those nights of endless drinking and talking about our feelings (because that’s what we do you know) the topic had gotten around to all of the May/December romances that kept cropping up among the group of girls we had attended boarding school together with. I had told them I was dating an older guy because I was incredibly attracted to them and always had been. Other friends of mine who were there that night (including one of the girls at brunch) admitted to also preferring older guys but hadn’t acted on their attraction due to concerns over what people would think and how their friends and family would react. As we continued to talk (mostly about people who weren’t there) I started to realize that this attraction to men 15-20 years older than we were was not some freak isolated thing. What I was witnessing among my own friends was a trend that was becoming increasingly popular across most of the U.S. What are the causes of this trend? Glad you asked… because now I am going to tell you.
The forces behind this trend are the same forces that are behind many of todays other relationship trends … Selfish women, no fault divorce, the Violence Against Women Act, corrupt family courts and laws in every state that have been used for the last 40 years to keep the children of divorced parents from having a strong male role model in their lives and a loving and meaningful relationship with their fathers. Consider the following theory: Today over 75% of divorces are instituted by the wife, the reasons most give outside of the court documents which all usually cite ‘irreconcilable differences’ is general unhappiness, infidelity (study after study have detrermined that women cheat much more often than men do), and ‘I just don’t love him anymore and I don’t want to waste my life in a loveless marriage’.
So here is the logic behind my thinking. Man and woman fall in love and get married…things are great … they have 2 1/2 kids, buy a house, and start to raise their family. As the children start to grow and their demands for time and attention begin to crowd out the parents time for eachother a general sense of “is this it? “is this my life?”, followed soon thereafter by “But I’m not happy/in love/ content” . Rather than accept responsibility for her own happiness and make the effort to shock some life into the marriage she starts to lookat him as the source of all of her negative feelings and unhappiness. Someone once write that “women want prince charming and men just want a wife”. This is when she will cheat if she is going too (from what I read from Dr. Laura, if a man is going to cheat it will generally be earlier in the marriage right after having babies) … the marriage becomes so damaged that she is convinced it couldn’t be fixed if she wanted it too … which she doesn’t. Eventually a divorce is filed by the wife …and her attorney becomes her advocate and what was once a loving happy couple who had at one time dedicated their lives to eachother …forever become enemy combatants hell bent on getting what they can. AUTHORS NOTE: All divorces aren’t this way and no two are exactly alike this is just one example out of millions that demonstrate how we get from point A all the way to point C so please don’t write me emails saying “my husband drank and beat me up” or any other exception to what i am saying because I am admitting they exist. Thank you!
Only one parent can have primary custody of the children and while those numbers are evolving the wife is awarded custody much more often than the husband. That usually mean the husband is the party paying child support to the wife. It’s true that many dead beat fathers exist but there are many many more fathers who aren’t. It is an accepted fact that children do better and are more likely to become well adjusted adults when they are raised in a family with a father and a mother who are in a comitted and loving relationship. Children need BOTH parents in their lives even if, as I discovered, the wife would really prefer it if her ex would suddenly transform himself into a deaf and mute ATM machine because anything less interferes with her plans for herself. Along the way in this process a large percentage of women reach into their arsenal and pull out the ex-husband/father killer … a.k.a. the Violence Against Women Act or just “VAWA”. This is the body of legislation that brought about the overuse and abuse of restraining orders and have been responsible for jailing more husbands/fathers than any other single piece of legislation in our history. If a woman says her ex ‘frighhtens her’ and ‘yells and curses’ at her then he is a target for one of these no contact orders. These orders are rubber stamped by judges and state that the husband cannot contact the wife in anyway or he will be arrested and thrown in jail and should this happen 2 times then the 3rd time it becomes a felony. What these orders don’t say is the woman is not allowed to contact the man… and therein lies the problem. The way i have seen women use these orders to gain leverage and compliance with their demands is shameful. If the wife isn’t succesful in eliminating the father from their childrens lives in the divorce court then she can do it more quickly and less expensively through VAWA with the net result being : We have an entire generation of children who are being raised by 1 parent (usually the mother) and the system that gave us no fault divorce to make the destruction of families so much easier is also the system that restricts millions of fathers from taking an active and loving role in their childrens lives. The first wave of females who were actively denied (or didn’t have) a positive male role model as they were growing up are people my age … and regardless if the lack of a father or loving father figure was due to situations like the one decribed above or due to any other reason (my girlfriends and I grew up in a boarding school away from our homes and our fathers) doesn’t matter …the damage is done when there aren’t both parents involved in their lives.
Other blowback from actions of the no fault divorce/VAWA abusing women from 25 years ago this: (try to appreciate the irony here please) By selfishly eliminating or curtailing the presence of the fathers in their childrens lives has brought about this entire 1st generation of girls who are in their mid to late 20’s who find themselves attracted to men 15-20 years their senior … those mothers who nurtured this abhorent conduct now find themselves competing with their daughters for the same 40 something men … who do you suppose has been winning that battle?
Check out this book which explores this issue in more depth but reaches the sam conclusions: