Younger Men Often Prefer Older Women, Psychology Explains Why

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When it comes to healthy and fulfilling relationships, most people tend to want the same things: respect, attraction, honesty, and loyalty to name a few. But when it comes to the partners we choose, there’s a more unique formula based on our individual psychology.

It’s becoming more of a common habit for younger men to be attracted to older women, and there are science-based reasons for this choice of significant other. While there are endless great things about younger women, psychologists believe these factors make some men prefer older ones.

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Confidence Is Key

We’ve all experienced attraction to someone because of how they carry themselves. Similar to the way that some women are attracted to bad boys for their self-assurance, men tend to favor older women because of their confidence.

Four women and a dog sitting on a city park bench.
Chris Murray / Unsplash
Chris Murray / Unsplash

Confidence is key, and psychologists believe that the aura of high self-esteem makes people instantly fall in love. The older we get, the more we learn to love ourselves, making a woman with age more attractive to someone younger.

Intelligence Is Attractive

Psychology explains that a man adores a woman who can teach him new things, sparking his desire to learn. Some men prefer to date older women because they believe they can offer more intellectual and exciting conversations than the immaturity of younger girls.

A woman wearing glasses and reading a book.
Lucrezia Carnelos / Unsplash
Lucrezia Carnelos / Unsplash

Men will feel a sense of accomplishment when their older girlfriend finds them to be interesting and wise. A healthy relationship requires a partner who can hold, continue, and initiate good communication, so men tend to think they are more likely to find this in someone older.

Financial Stability

While men often try to identify as the dominant partner in a relationship, it’s actually psychologically proven that most men find it attractive when their partner wears the pants. A man will seek out a significant other that is older than him because he knows he can share her already-made success.

Loose change and a weed planted in a flower pot.
Micheile Dot Com / Unsplash
Micheile Dot Com / Unsplash

Financial stability is an attractive quality in a prospective partner and men like the idea that an older woman who is successful will be in control. Younger partners don’t offer a shoulder to lean on the same way that older ones do.

Life Experience

The older a person is, the more life they have come to experience. Because of this correlation between age and experimentation, psychology explains that men like older women because they know what they’re doing – in life and the bedroom.

An older woman posing on a field, a close-up shot of her face.
Edward Cisneros / Unsplash
Edward Cisneros / Unsplash

An experienced woman has already gone through the trials and tribulations of her youth. Instead of putting the pressure and stress of growing up on her partner, she can teach him what she has already seen and learned. Some men feel that finding a partner who is sufficient and independent is like winning the lottery.

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Throughout a young woman’s life, she experiences many changes. Women undergo physical body changes, mental shifts, and raging hormones in their early adulthood. Psychology says that men seek out older women because of their reputation for being emotionally mature.

A man and woman laughing together on a yoga mat.
krakenimages / Unsplash
krakenimages / Unsplash

Men believe that an older partner will already have regulated hormone levels, and be less likely to stir up drama or unnecessary conflict in their relationships. A partner who understands, controls, and communicates her emotions and feelings, will also help guide younger men on how to transition from a playful boyfriend to a seriously committed partner.

Won’t Play Games

A man who is ready for a committed relationship will seek a partner on the same path in life. According to psychology, one of the primary reasons men are attracted to older women is due to the idea that they will already know what they want, fulfilling their desire for stability.

A man and woman sitting closely in a field at sunset.
Almos Bechtold / Unsplash
Almos Bechtold / Unsplash

Many young adults spend their early years experimenting with different types of partners and exploring different relationships to learn what they like and don’t like. But, a man who has passed this stage of life will want a partner who comes ready to settle down instead of playing games.

Maternal Care

Each unique person will look for something different in their romantic partners. Studies have concluded that older women are suitable for men who are in search of a lover that can support them emotionally, physically, and financially.

An elderly lady washing carrots at a kitchen sink.
CDC / Unsplash
CDC / Unsplash

The popular theories of Sigmund Freud reveal that young boys experience attraction to their mothers throughout their childhood. It seems that this early 20th-century theory remains in some part true today, explaining why men crave maternal care and mothering attitudes from their significant others.

Leading The Way

The study of psychology helps us learn how our brains are wired, and it turns out that men tend to look for benefits in their partnerships with women. While young love is fun, thrilling, and exciting, it turns out that some men tend to want more than just romance in their dating life.

A couple holding hands, standing in the ocean and walking towards the sunset.
Igor Rodrigues / Unsplash
Igor Rodrigues / Unsplash

According to psychologists, some men are born to seek a partner who can make their life simpler and easier, causing them to gravitate towards attraction to older women who can show them the way.

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nicolemior is one of the authors writing for Higher Perspectives