Ten Things Middle-Aged Men Wish Women Knew
Surprise! You Have Reached Middle Age and No One Gets Out Alive
Middle age can hit hard. The very term middle-aged means you are just as close to death as you are to birth, and its downhill from there. If you have ever wondered why men suffer the clichéd mid-life crisis, it is because we realize that time to live is short and we can see our own mortality. Indulgence in fast cars and young women is our way of cramming in some of the good life we always imagined we would have while we are still young enough to enjoy it. The clock never stops ticking.
Making matters worse, more and more middle-aged men (and women) are finding themselves single. Perhaps once their children are raised one or both, retire, and they actually have time to spend together other only to find out they really can't stand each other. Or perhaps their spouse is far from the person they married a few decades ago. Whatever the reason, once thing is irrefutable; being single, middle-aged and dating can be brutal. Between dating norms that have changed dramatically since we were single, to the jungle of online dating, it is a wonder middle-aged men and women date at all.
Welcome to Dating in the 21st Century
Seemingly unfair, after you reach middle age and are looking, the scales tip heavily in men's favor. Particularly if a man is in reasonably good shape and still not living with his mother. Sadly, one of the reasons is, once we hit a certain age, the entire ritual of dating and mating has taken a backseat on our priority list, and we would rather spend an evening watching Thursday Night Football than hearing about your grandchildren's birthday parties. It just doesn't seem worth the trouble, and as the testosterone tank depletes, desire wanes accordingly.
If you want to increase your chances of finding a mate while in the latter half of your life, there are some things that men wish women knew about them. While you do not have to agree or embrace our wishes, here are ten items that, if you at least understand them, will significantly increase your chances of landing a date.
1. Men Have Baggage Too
The whole baggage thing is usually uttered in the same sentence when men are describing potential mates. Dragging all of that into a new relationship is a drama show none of us want to attend. Conversely, men often come with some of the same baggage. We have had bad relationships, been hurt by our spouses, cheated on, lied to and taken advantage of as well; women do not have sole claim on emotional baggage. Men do tend to suppress it better, but it is still there. It will eventually bubble to the surface if you know us long enough, just know it is there and you will have to deal with eventually.
2. We Expect Sex Sooner Than You Do
Jumping in bed with a man as soon as you meet them is probably not a good idea. No woman wants to be thought of as a harlot. But you should be aware that after the first date starts, the bedroom clock starts ticking. At our age, it only takes one, or possibly two, dates to decide if you are a potential mate. If we want a third date, it means we are seriously interested. Nothing is more off putting as meeting a 40 or 50 something woman who has decided that, at middle age, she is going to feign chastity. That's a great attitude for a young women in college perhaps, but not for mature women. Or worse yet, we get the “I decided that, after years of dating/marriage, I am not going to sleep with anyone until if find Mr. Right.” Translated for us that means, “I slept with a lot of guys, but starting now, I am being extremely picky. The other guys got lucky, but you are shit out of luck.” If you are not ready to put out by the third date, don't act surprised when we start ignoring your calls/texts and disappear. Harsh, but true.
3. Sports is Our Life
Most of us played sports in high school. And all of us dreamed of playing professionally at some time in our life. None of us were talented enough to realize that dream, but we can still revel in our sport heritage by watching, talking about, reading about, thinking about, and wearing apparel related to major league sports teams. We all agree it is a sickness, but one we don't mind having and there is no known cure. When our team is playing, plan on spending the next three hours alone.
4. We Want Our Women to Be in Reasonably Good Shape
We drink beer; and they are called beer guts for a reason. We know we are slovenly, but that doesn't mean we want a woman that is a mirror image of ourselves. It has been super unfair throughout history that women's currency is beauty, while men's currency is wealth and power. When is the last time you heard someone say that a certain male actor has aged badly? Sean Connery even got sexier as he aged. Women don't get that break. While men can let themselves go and still attract mates with reasonable ease, women are not afforded the same luxury. Your marketability will rise significantly if you keep yourself looking attractive. Yeah, I know, it sucks, but that number on your bathroom scale is a good indicator of how alluring most men find you.
5. Our Money is Important
None of us are rich, but many of us have found a place in life where we can afford to keep ourselves happy. Maybe we splurge on a classic car, or season tickets, but that money was hard earned; we have invested the majority of our lives accumulating it. Additionally, at some time in our life, we likely got taken to the cleaners by an ex-wife and had to work even harder to repair the financial damage. Do not expect us to wine and dine you. We will to an extent, but trust me, there is a calculator in our head adding up how much we spend on any woman we date. If it becomes excessive, we dump her. And more importantly, if we are footing the bill for most of dating activities and you are interested in us, see tip number 2.
6. We Don't Care About Your Grandkids
Seriously, we don't. We may have grandkids of our own and dote on them, but yours are not part of our lives, and your grandchildren to not bring anything to the table. If, on the first date, you are showing your potential mate pictures of your grandkids, we will politely nod and say how cute they are. In reality, we are planning our exit. Once a relationship has established itself as serious and the two of you become an item, then it is time to gently slide your children's children into the scene; never before. If you want to show us pictures of your dog however, that is entirely acceptable.
7. Our Bathroom Will Never Be Acceptably Clean
Even after we have just cleaned it, it will not pass muster if you inspect it. We would be more than happy to let you clean it, but if you are not into cleaning toilets it is best to accept that we are pigs in the bathroom and move one.
8. We Are Fashion Challenged and Don't Really Care
Have you ever shopped for clothes at a thrift store? The women's selection is huge, and the men's apparel consists of a few racks of clothes from three decades ago. That is because while women are always shopping to look their best and have a variety of outfits, men tend to wear their clothes until they disintegrate. We have pretty much a few pair of jeans, some goofy shoes, and three or four polo shirts. Somewhere in the back of the closest is a pair of Dockers for when we need to dress up. We might even have a dress shirt we wore at a job interview back when Reagan was president. The absolute worse thing you can do is try to help a man update his wardrobe unless asked to. We are not metrosexuals that adorn our bodies in the latest fashion. When we put on our clothes in the morning, we know that we will not look fashionable, and possibly mistaken for a homeless hipster. Frankly, we don't care. Don't try to change how we dress.
9. We Need Time Alone
You probably do too, but for men it is a more pressing thing. Most women have done the bulk of parenting and are the masters at multi-tasking. With the exception of our actual jobs, it is easy for us to become overwhelmed; especially when diving into a new relationship. Often, we need a few days with little or no human contact. If we fall off of the planet a few days don't sweat it. If we are interested we will get back to you. If you don't hear back from us after a week, it's time for you to start logging into that dating site again.
10. We Need to Be Needed
Since the caveman days, men have been the protectors and providers. In the history of the world, women have only dabbled in those roles for a few seconds. While we may complain about it, we secretly like it when you call and need a jump start or a tire changed. Don't believe it when we say we hate fixing things at your place. Nothing makes a man feel like a man than changing your spark plugs, unclogging your toilet, fixing a leaky faucet or assembling that thing you bought from Ikea. It helps us fulfill a primitive need. The next time you have a home repair that you can do yourself, feign incompetence and ask us to do it.
You Are Middle-Aged, Not Dead. Get Yourself Out There
While the above tips are not all encompassing, they are some of the top things we wished women knew about us. And there are the exceptions to every tip, but they do apply to the vast majority of men. Every middle-aged person knows that dating in the 21stcentury sucks. But armed with these ten testosterone tools of information, you can swing the odds in your favor that you won't be the crazy cat lady everyone predicted you would become.