ageless love
chris and beverly

"The search must begin at home, within the self."
-- Robin Norwood


I often awake to find Beverly, my older wife, wrapped around me like a Virginia creeper. In the twenty-five years since we met, she has shown me what true love is, and I couldn't live without it. For the first time, I have someone who wants me as much as I want her.

Falling in love with an older woman is the best thing I ever did, and I'm not alone. The percentage of women marrying younger men doubled over the past two decades, and women marrying for the second time are seven times more likely to marry a younger man.

Listen to women with younger husbands or lovers and you'll hear:

"We're a perfect fit,"
"He accepts me as I am,"
"He keeps me young,"
"I liked it on top."

If you haven't discovered the joys of a younger man, it's probably cultural. Close your eyes and imagine a romantic couple snuggling together. One person is older and distinguished; the other is young and sexy. What do you see in your mind's eye? If it's an older man with his second (or third) wife, you're not alone. Hollywood is run by men, so it's hard to escape their fantasies.

Perhaps it's time to rewrite the script. Women who consider younger partners triple their chances of finding the love they deserve. More importantly, older women and younger men enjoy equal, open, and exciting relationships. As one forty-seven year old divorcee with a twenty-eight year old lover says, "Younger men are just more fun."

The first step in finding the right partner is to know more about yourself. What are you passionate about? Think about people, places, objects, issues, careers, organizations, and hobbies. Write down several, starting with the most important.

Close your eyes and imagine your ideal soulmate. What things must you share? What's "negotiable?" (Careful, this doesn't mean ignoring your feelings, denying deeply held beliefs, or trying to change someone else). What's "non-negotiable?"

Imagine yourself on your deathbed. What are three things you wish you had done? This may seem like a curious way to find a mate, but sometimes we're too busy living our lives to question whether it's the right life. Think about what you really want, not what you think you should want. This might include raising a family, succeeding at your career, building a business, fighting for an issue, or finding a spiritual community. We all have many roles in life, but pick your top three priorities.

Now look in the mirror and remember yourself ten years ago. Didn't you have many of the same hopes and dreams then that you have now? Imagine the ideal partner for your younger self. Before thinking "he's too young for me," ask, "too young for what?" It might be time to "think again" about younger men.

If you can't imagine yourself with a younger man, let your interests, aspirations, and values guide you. The best way to find someone worthwhile is to become the person you always wanted to be. By being good to yourself and others, you help people become better and you attract better people.

Visualize doing something with your soulmate (no, outside the bedroom). Where are you? Browsing at the local bookstore? Jogging? Building homes for poor families? If you're looking for the right person, you can meet your ideal partner anytime, anywhere, doing almost anything.

The most important thing is to be yourself rather than pretending to be someone you think others will want. Remember the "rules" for women that advised: "Don't talk to a man first" and "Don't call him and rarely return his calls"? You can make your own rules by understanding that age is an asset. If you believe in yourself, you'll look for someone to complement you rather than complete you.

Start by being less concerned about whether a man is older, wiser, richer, taller, or all the things you might have wanted when you were sixteen. the most important thing about a man is his character. Younger guys may need guidance, but we all teach others how to treat us, and older women are better teachers.

No matter what your age, you don't need to change the world to find love, sometimes all that has to change is you. If you are open to a different kind of relationship, a younger man will appear in your life. It happens all the time, especially if you follow

The Rules for Older Women:

Rule #1You deserve love.
Rule #2Your age is an asset.
Rule #3Be open to younger men.
Rule #4Don't compromise on character.
Rule #5Be understanding, but never reward bad behavior.
Rule #6No matter what his age, don't do all the giving.

The best way to meet someone is to do the things you love while networking through people you know. The trouble with bars and dating services is that everyone's looking for the same person (someone who starred on Baywatch) instead of the right person. There are lots of men at auto shows, but don't go just to meet them. You're more likely to connect with someone if you're doing something you enjoy.

If you are dissatisfied with your love life, ask "What is my role in this?" There is nothing wrong with expecting a man to be older or more experienced, but if that expectation no longer serves you, don't wait for the culture to change - change it yourself. Once you free yourself from the pattern set for you in antiquity, you can begin a journey of exploration and discovery that transforms your life.

Finding a younger soulmate means visualizing a different future, letting go of negative thoughts, and breaking out of comfortable routines. If you want to attract someone who's interesting, accomplished, and caring, start by developing these characteristics in yourself.

The following steps will bring younger men into your life:

Step One:Follow the Rules for Older Women
Step Two:Assess your core values, passions, and goals.
Step Three:Decide what you must have in common with your partner.
Step Four:Make it a priority to do the things you love.
Step Five:Network with people you trust and make everyplace the right place to meet a younger man.
Step Six:Let go of blame.
Step Seven: Strive for a balanced life of loving, learning, work, and play.
Step Eight:Be clear about what you want, but don't try to change other people.
Step Nine:To attract a person you desire, become more like the people you admire.
Step Ten:Start an Ageless Love Club.

An Ageless Love Club is like having your own matchmaker. It can be built around dozens of activities and have any number of members, as long as they are interested in loving relationships between older women and younger men. the key is to structure activities around caring friendships. Remember, there are no perfect people, only people who are perfect for us. As Beverly, my older wife, says, "the only happy-ever-after is the one we create for ourselves."

Starting an Ageless Love Club

Your Ageless Love Club should attract people who share your interests and values. What is important to you? What have you always wanted to try? Visit www.agelesslove.com for inspiration and use the following list to plan something fun with your Club's "Founding Mothers."
  • Do something good for someone else. Volunteer at a local nonprofit agency or religious institution. Within a mile of your home, there is someone in a hospital, group home, or senior center who would welcome a visit. there are also animals that need care, or at least walking, and that's a great way to meet men. Working with troubled kids can change your life, and they need role models, a perfect job for a younger man. Collect canned goods for the local food bank or, if none exists, create one through your church, cathedral, synagogue, or mosque.

  • Do something good for your community. Helping to build or repair someone's home is a good way to meet men with tools. If there's not a Habitat for Humanity in your area, consult with local builders and start something more modest yourself, such as a repair service for seniors or low income families. Make sure some of your volunteers are single young men. Conduct a fundraiser for the local police or fire department. Organize an environmental clean up (trash, not chemicals). Decide what your neighborhood needs (a community garden, civilian patrol, or teen center) and make it happen. If you're interested in a specific issue like education or health care, think about aligning your club with an existing group or coalition.

  • Do something good for your country: Call the USO, Veterans of Foreign Wars, or a local military base and see how you can help. Join other groups to promote racial harmony and religious tolerance. Safeguard freedom and democracy by organizing a voter's registration drive, creating a grass roots effort to find better candidates for public office (or running yourself), joining a political party, or hosting events for candidates. Work on or raise funds for an issue you're passionate about. Select a nationally-focused organization (such as Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Goodwill Industries International, the National trust for Historic Preservation, The Nature Conservancy, American Red Cross, Salvation Army, or The National Urban League) and align your activities with it.

  • Do something good for yourself: this could be physical, mental, or spiritual. If work has taken over your life, try something less career-oriented and more inner-directed, such as yoga (some positions work better with a partner). Start a club that's focused on walking, hiking, or jogging. If you're athletic, set up a co-ed sports league; if not, exercise your mind by tapping into local universities, museums, or cultural agencies. Choose a topic (investing in the stock market, understanding the Internet, learning how to cook Italian) and host a series of hands-on forums. Explore your faith at a local religious institution.

  • Just for fun: Visit a nearby landmark or nature preserve; take a boat ride on the nearest lake or river; get tickets to an upcoming concert, show, or fair; check out the auto, boat, or dog show; host a classic movie screening (Casablanca) or have a relaxing buffet supper while watching Godfather I, II, and III. Take a virtual vacation to an exotic place using the Internet, home videos (no slides allowed), and materials from your travel agent (dress appropriately, especially if it's Bermuda); have a formal dinner party where all the men are under thirty and the women over forty; or hire an instructor and learn to dance - with younger men.
You might just find the love of your life.



Chris K. Olander

Chris Olander, author of The Ageless Love trilogy, can be contacted at olander5@aol.com.



The Woman's Guide to Younger Men, Notes
Robin Norwood, Women Who Love Too Much: When You Keep Wishing He'll Change

Constance L. Shehan and Felix M. Bernardo, "Women in Age-Discrepant Marriages," Journal of Family Issues, Vol. 12 (September, 1991), pp. 291-305.

Author interviews

Deborah Gimelson, "Pumped Up," New York Times Magazine (June 27, 1993), p. 18.

Helena Hacker Rosenberg, How to Get Married After 35: A Game Plan for Love, (New York, HarperCollins Publishers, 1998), p. 209 ("Too young for what?), p. 214 ("Think again").

Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider, The Rules: Time tested Secrets for Capturing e Heart of Mr. Right, (New York, Warner Books, Inc., 1995), p. 22.

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