How young is too young? I go to this gym here in Philly, and over the past three weeks I’ve noticed this guy staring at me. A week ago, I just went up to him and spoke. I mean if he is just going to keep staring, I figured I might as well. When I spoke to him, he apologized for staring, but said he finds me attractive. We got to talking and one thing led to another, and I find myself having a date planned with him for this Saturday. The problem is, he added me on Facebook, and after looking at some of his pictures, I realized he’s younger than me. When I asked him how old he is, he told me is only 22. I’m 31. I just think that’s so young. But what do you think? Would you go on this date or back out?
– Too Old for Him
Dear Too Old for Him,
Thanks for writing to me. If you’ve ever been an Aaliyah fan, she will lead you to believe that “age ain’t nothing but a number.” And while she may have sang these lyrics in a song, the expression itself has been around a long time. With good reason too. It’s not that uncommon to see relationships where one person is significantly older than the other. Case and point, look at the Carter Knowles dynasty. Jay Z is 47 while Queen Bey is 35. You can also look to Ellen DeGeneres and her wife Portia de Rossi. The talk show host is 58 years young while her spouse is 43. In both examples, age apparently was a non-factor given both celebrity couples have appeared happy for quite some time.
While there are some people that don’t see age when dating, I don’t happen to be one of them. I do think age matters to a degree. As someone that has a history of dating a little older, I’ve typically done so because I seek a certain level of maturity in my relationship. I’ve never been a fan of playing games or juvenile confrontation. And as another saying goes, “with age comes maturity.” Now in my late 20s, I can understand your apprehension about dating someone who barely crossed the threshold of 21.
But enough about me, let’s hone in on you, and why you should give this guy a shot. At 22, this man is at least legal and grown. What I mean by that, is that he can go everywhere you want to go, and do everything you want to do. If you want to go the bar, he can get in. If you want to go drop a few dollars gambling, he can get into the casino. Should the mood strike you and him to get it on and poppin, you can act without fear of going to jail. That’s great news.
Now while I understand you may be nervous about dating someone younger due to maturity issues, let me point out that sometimes older does not mean more mature. I’m sure you know a few men in their 30s and 40s, who aren’t more mature today than they were at 18. So who am I to say that this 22 year old tenderoni doesn’t have the maturity level that you seek. At 22 I knew I was more mature than many folks my age, and perhaps he’s the same. Truth be told, the fact you didn’t know he is 22 until you got on his Facebook, is a good sign.
Let me also point out that you just agreed to go on a date. Nothing more, and nothing less. From what you shared, he didn’t ask you to marry him, so I don’t see the harm in entertaining him at least one time. Like I always say, sometimes we have to date outside our comfort zone. Heck, you may go out with him and realize he has more “boo potential” than you thought. And with cuffing season upon us…Well, I’m just saying. LOL.
Suggestions going forward.
- If you decide to go on this date, which I think you should, don’t attempt to “son” him. Don’t pretend to know everything and diminish his opinions just because you are older. Trust me, younger guys hate that.
- While you’re single, don’t be afraid to date outside your norms. If your norms haven’t been working out for you romantically, perhaps it’s time to reevaluate your norms.
As always nothing but love,