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One of the first men to ask me out after my divorce was a gorgeous Englishman who was 13 years younger.  I wasn't sure why a guy so much younger than me was interested.  It wasn't as if he couldn't get any woman he wanted.  I looked at him with disbelief and asked, "Do you have any idea how old I am?"  He laughed and began telling me how he was very attracted to Cougars.  I didn't know if I should be flattered or insulted.  I had no idea what or who a Cougar was.  I realized I had some research to do.  And the best way to do my research was to go straight to the source – men, lots of men.  I can sum up their definitions in two basic responses.  Some men defined Cougars as older women who stalk a younger man so they can use him for sex, throw him away and go off to find their next prey.  But others defined Cougars as mature women who are successful, confident and full of life.  They are comfortable in their skin and know how to appreciate the beauty of a relationship regardless the age of their companion.  

What do younger men get from dating Cougars? These men say older women are more sincere, more stable, less likely to play mind games, have a much better sense of self and tend to treat men with more respect.  Age isn't a factor.  They could be just as attracted to a woman in her 40's or older as her younger counterparts.  

But are older women concerned about the longevity of a relationship with a younger man?  What about the stability older men offer?   Or are older women really after one thing and one thing only?  

Many of these women say that men their age or older seem to be the ones looking for the one-night stands.  Finding an older man who is looking for a committed relationship seems to be difficult at best.  They also feel older men can be too stuck in their ways to allow for someone else to come into their life permanently.  These men aren't interested in compromise.  The expectation is that the woman will change her lifestyle, her schedule and even her values to fit his.

Yet younger men tend to have less demands on the relationship and are more flexible.  These men don't require hourly updates of the woman's whereabouts and tend to be less intimidated by her success.    

Some Cougars enjoy dating men of all ages.  Some aren't looking for anything long-term at this point, but others are.  Yet dating a younger man gives them a fresh perspective and a chance for new experiences, and of course, a dose of self-confidence.  

I did go out with my English admirer, and since then, most of the men I've dated have been younger.  You could say that dating younger keeps me on my toes and off the sofa.

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