On A Fog-Bound Morning

Dear Noted Relationship Expert,

Older men dating younger women is nothing anyone usually takes notice of. But a woman dating a younger man usually is. How much younger of a man can a woman date without being called a cradle-robber? Tonight, I was hanging out with a 21-year-old woman who was interested in a guy who is 19. I tend to go for older men myself, but I'm a little interested in a guy who is 21. (I'm 24.) And I'm holding back from showing interest because he is younger.

What should we do, oh wise one?


Dear Maggie,

Your letter seems slightly premature, as it's still mid-August and late September is still a ways off.

But anyway.

I tried calling up some expert witnesses but both Dustin Hoffman and Rod Stewart were unavailable.

It's curious that this summer has seen two films about young men getting involved with much older women (Tadpole, which got bad reviews, and The Good Girl, which got good reviews). Is this an older woman/younger man revolution?

Beats me. (I know, that was really helpful) We've certainly come a long way from the days of George and Martha, though.

I don't think that a couple of years either way make much of a difference. I know a 29-year-old woman who went out with a 22-year-old guy for a few months and certainly no-one thought much of it. Eyebrows might have been raised if she'd been 39, but I don't think that it would have made that much difference.

So my advice is go for it. Go out, get have a few drinks, feel up his knee, let nature take its course. Youth has its advantages.

Of course, youth also has its disadvantages: I wouldn't expect either of them to be paragons of maturity and responsibility.

(then again, I'm the guy who said that all men are basically pigs, so I don't really expect men, as a class, to be paragons of maturity and responsibility)