Ask Nicci: Should Age Define Your Relationship Status?

Ask Nicci: Should Age Define Your Relationship Status?

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There is a very attractive man that lives in my building, and we keep running into each other in the gym. We have been flirting heavily for a while, and just this week he asked me out for drinks. We are both successful executives with a lot in common. However, he is definitely 10 years younger than me. Does that make me a "cougar"? Am I crazy for considering accepting his invitation?


Dare I?


Dear Dare,


You can’t go anywhere these days without someone talking about cougar women. There’s even a television show on NBC about them. I think it’s fabulous that women over the age of 40 are finally getting the attention they deserve.


Let me start off first by explaining exactly what a "cougar" is because people are generally misinformed, leading them to judge these women, view them as ridiculous, and rarely take them seriously.


A true cougar is a confident, sexy, beautiful and financially independent woman. She is also a woman of style and of grace. She is a leader who never apologizes for being successful and has worked hard for everything she has, and she appreciates it all. A real cougar is defined by her attitude about life.


Too often the term cougar is used in a negative way that is unflattering to all women. It’s the image of an older, unhappy woman hanging out in bars, chasing after younger men. Nothing could be further from the truth. Cougars are certainly attracting younger men, but these men are the ones doing the chasing. They are recognizing just how much cougars have to offer.


Your connection with the guy in the gym appears to have happened organically. Meaning, you were not pursuing him for the sole purpose of his age. Instead, you felt attracted to him (possibly had some butterflies), and it was more than likely a natural attraction. In fact, it sounds like he was the aggressor and the one that pursued you. Who wouldn’t love an attractive younger man flirting with them and asking them out!


I wouldn’t focus on the age difference or feel awkward about accepting his invitation. Remember that age doesn’t need to play a big part in who you decide to sleep with, date or even marry. Relationships transpire all the time where one partner is significantly younger. It all comes down to attraction, honesty and communication. Regardless of your age, as long as you possess all of these qualities, a relationship can grow and be healthy. Keep in mind that not all relationships must be long-term, committed or monogamous. Maybe you should let loose and have some fun with this guy, not put any pressure on yourself to label it. You have nothing to lose and a hot younger man to gain. Go for it! Make your girlfriends jealous!


So, here’s the bottom line: Achieving the rank of "real cougar" is a privilege, not an embarrassment. Don’t ever let age stop you from getting everything you want. You deserve it all.