Man Breaks Down Why Older Men Who Date Younger Women Need To 'Get Into Therapy,' & Experts Say He's Not Wrong

He chalks it up to 'emotional immaturity,' and experts say he's not exactly wrong.

DJ Gary Thompson & May-December celebrities Beyoncé & Jay-Z, Michael Douglas & Catherine Zeta-Jones, Dane Cook and Kelsi Taylor, Leonardo DiCaprio @garythompson063/TikTok; DFree, Featureflash Photo Agency, Eugene Powers, Denis Makarenko/

Everywhere you look, older men are dating much younger woman—just Leonardo DiCaprio's preference for women under 25 alone has become a meme and everything.

DiCaprio is far from alone in Hollywood, of course—young stars like Billie Eilish, Olivia Rodrigo and Millie Bobby Brown routinely date much older men

And Beyoncé and Jay-Z have been a power couple since 2001—when she was 20 and he was 32.


These "May To December" pairings seem to be ubiquitous among non-celebs too, and a 40-something radio DJ thinks he knows why—he chalks it up to men's "emotional immaturity."

That's a claim that will surely resonate for anyone who's... well, ever interacted with a man in pretty much any context, really.

But experts say that while Thompson definitely has a point, there's a bit more to the story of why older men seek out younger women.

RELATED: Woman Defends 17-Year Age Gap With Her 23-Year-Old Husband — People Say He’s Also ‘Too Pretty’ For Her

DJ Gary Thompson says older men seek younger women to date because they are emotionally immature and need to "get into therapy."

Thompson, himself a middle-aged man of 45, admits that his hot take on age-gap relationships isn't going to go over very well with most men. 


But, he says, older men wanting to date 25-year-olds "might be because [they are] the emotional maturity level of that 25-year-old woman."



Thompson was quick to stipulate that there's "nothing wrong" with a 25-year-old woman being at a 25-year-old maturity level of course.

"But," he went on to say, "there's a real problem with me being emotionally 25 if I'm 45 walking around with silver in my beard."


He then theorized younger women are attracted to older men because they assume they will treat them more fairly and maturely than a 20-something—an assumption he says turns out to be "a bait-and-switch."

Thompson says older men hurt younger women "worse than being hurt by a 23-year-old" because they have no dealt with their own wounds from when they themselves were messy 20-something men.

"[Stop] using women who are in their 20s as emotional scratching posts, guys," he urged. "Get into therapy. Actually become that emotionally secure, emotionally available man."

RELATED: Why Older Men Like Younger Women (Even When You're A Much Better Match)


Thompson's theories about why middle-aged men date 20-something women definitely resonated with TikTok users, especially women.

One user quipped, "OMG! I had no idea ANY man was able to achieve this level of self-realization," and several others praised Thompson for his "spot on" take.

And women who had their own experiences dating older men were definitely on-board with Thompson's analysis.

"I dated men in their 40s my entire 20s," one woman wrote. "Nothing to show for it but horror stories." 

Another who "always dated older men" wrote that her relationships always ended in heartbreak because "I expected a level of maturity that was never there."


Others pointed out that such relationships never last because "as soon as she matures beyond him she’s gone."

Perhaps that's why marriages with large age gaps are far more likely to end in divorce.

RELATED: 20 Celebrity Couples Who Have A Decade (Or More) Age Gap Between Them

According to experts and scientists, the reasons older men want younger women are more complicated—and may even have evolutionary factors.

Studies have shown that men's attraction to younger women is likely in part a primal instinct—men selecting women who are both more fertile and likely to outlive them.

But other experts say the preference also comes down to good old-fashioned partiarchy-based power structures that say men get better with age while women do the opposite.


Dr. Amanda Savage-Brown, a psychotherapist specializing in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), says there is more to it than just maturity.

"While emotional immaturity might explain why some men repeatedly seek relationships with much younger women, it's important to also acknowledge the social factors driving this behavior," she tells us.

"Like it or not, we live in a youth- and beauty-obsessed society that sexually objectifies women. We are conditioned to value younger women who meet or exceed beauty standards. Naturally, some men may see their own worth reflected in their ability to 'get' younger women."


Still, complicated as this all is, Thompson's not exactly wrong—according to Australian psychologist Jacqui Manning, May-December relationships are also related to the much-vaunted "midlife crisis."

"[W]hen they encounter their 40s [men] begin to feel their virility is declining, their power is declining," she told the Sydney Morning Herald.

"And that’s when they [may] go out seeking a partner who can mirror back youth to them."

Yep, sounds like Thompson was definitely on to something in his TikTok. Here's to you all finding a therapist, gentlemen.

RELATED: Couples Counselor Explains Why Leonardo DiCaprio Only Dates Women Under 25-Years-Old


John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.