It's not just about sex (although that's hella hot!).
From celebrity women like Mariah Carey, Demi Moore, and Halle Berry to prime-time television (Lipstick Jungle and ABC's Cougar Town) it's clear that the older-ladies-dating-down double standard is starting to disappear. The term "cougar" even surfaced in a T-Mobile commercial.
1. Less Is More
Instead of dining at three-star restaurants that you won't remember a month from now or checking out the latest over-praised Broadway show, your younger guy will help you achieve a simpler, more pared-down existence.
Rhoda Clark, 41, of New York City, who has had a number of younger suitors, lives with her 24-year-old boyfriend of 18 months. "I cook a lot more since he moved in with me which was a nice change of pace from eating out four to five days a week," Clark says. "If anything, I'm more domestic with him than I ever was with men closer to my age group." (As an added perk, she's dropped 30 pounds since they began seeing each other.)
Libbe S. HaLevy, 59, of Los Angeles, learned about the "wonders of camping and hiking" from her younger boyfriend. "We explored many obscure hiking trails," she says,"Including a search for hidden modern petroglyphs in the hills of the San Fernando Valley. I also learned the 'joy' of certain vegetarian fast foods: Taco Bell — who knew?"
2. Inexperience = Eagerness
Regardless of how many partners your lover has had, chances are when it comes to the sack, he needs some guidance, literally and figuratively. Take a firm hand and share your wealth of knowledge. In the long run, he'll be glad to know that however much pleasure he's had in the past, he can have more, longer.
Forty-something New Yorker Darby Clark, has dated men 10 to 20 years her junior and discovered that younger men "respond extremely well to feedback and direction — better than older guys."
Ann Fry, 62, also from New York City, is seeing a 40-year-old. "I found men my age to be much more boring sexually or to truly not be very good at sex. It's like they got into a pattern with their spouses and they just don't try that hard," she says. "In my relationship with a younger man ... our sex life is great. He is very concerned about me and open to variety and fun experiences."
After you've passed on the wisdom of the elders, there will be one less guy in the world subjecting womankind to slobbery kisses and the patented jackhammer technique. The ladies of the world will thank you.
3. Newer Engine = Better Ride
What loverboy lacks in expertise, he makes up for in energy. While your friends have to schedule date nights to get serviced or wait for a blue pill to kick in, your stallion will bound out of the stables anytime, anywhere and all night if necessary. If you've been wondering what the hell the point is of having a guy reach his sexual peak in his 20s, now is exactly the time to answer that question for yourself — repeatedly.
Shari Lynn Rothstein-Kramer, 42, of Miami Beach, who is four years older than her husband, echoes the sentiment. "I am an overachiever and find that anyone older cannot keep up with me, especially when it comes to drive, stamina, the desire to try everything!"
I.G. Frederick, a novelist in her 40s, achieved tremendous satisfaction in her 18-month relationship with a 27-year-old. "In my 20s, I stopped having orgasms. Since I started having sex with younger men, I've become multi-multi orgasmic (as in can't keep count)," Frederick, who lives in Oregon, says. "After years stuck with an old and impotent husband, a young hard-body devoted to pleasing me was a vast improvement. Since he's bisexual, I did enjoy a MMF threesome with him which was something I had wanted to do for a long time."
4. Teach on!
Haven't had time to do any volunteering? Roll some mentoring into your relationship and shape that pretty young thing into a well-rounded member of the human race. School him on pairing wine with food. Introduce the neophyte to opera. Read Jane Austen to each other. It's an opportunity for you to get your guy to expand his worldview beyond internet porn and Ramen noodles.
While Rhoda Clark says that she and her boyfriend teach each other, she's benefited even more from his instruction. "He's taught me to be more loving, simply by telling me that he needs it and being affectionate to me even when I act like I don't care. In many ways, he's helped me to 'grow up.'"
HaLevy took great pleasure in getting her boyfriend to take on more adventurous activities. "He had lived a relatively sheltered life, still lived with his mother. Even though he'd lived in the San Fernando Valley all his life, he'd never seen the Hollywood sign because he hadn't gone 'over the hill.' Also, food became a major exploration. I knew as I introduced him to each new taste that for the rest of his life he would associate the taste of cheremoyas and baklava with me."
5. Reverse your clock
If you need a break from the endless chatter of your girlfriends and, well, the rest of society about ticking biological clocks, 200 dollar moisturizers, 401Ks and the latest yogilates class, who better to turn to than someone whose primary goal is having a good time?
After her divorce, New Yorker Hope Jones, 44, dated a man 10 years younger and "tried things out that I had not done with my ex-husband: mini-skirts, heels. I dressed much more sexily than I had in the past."
One 52-year-old Colorado artist agent has gone out with men as much as 10 years her junior and is currently dating someone who's 47. She believes younger men "have more sparkle."
"Older men seem to have lost that glint in the eye that says I'm still alive in here!" she says. "His youth encourages me to maintain my own intellect … and [leave] time out for some fun. I have been more genuinely myself with younger men than with anyone my own age."