Why Do Some Women Date Much Older Men?

After the wedding of a celebrity husband and his much younger wife, media coverage invariably focuses on the inappropriateness of the age gap. Whether it’s the new dad George Clooney (56) and his 18-year-younger wife, Amal, or Donald Trump (70) and his First Lady, Melania (age 47), commentators become psychoanalysts, suggesting that the younger woman is clearly seeking a father figure. Similar stories are triggered by the (much less-common) pairing of a younger man with an older woman, as with 39-year-old French president Emmanuel Macron, and his wife, Brigitte, 64. The rarity of such weddings make them novelties, but not fodder for the same type of speculation.

It’s well known that men tend to marry women younger than themselves, a pattern that leads to increasingly unbalanced male-to-female gender ratios as you move up to older and older age groups. Men also have a lower life expectancy than women, leaving women …

May-December romance rules: How to handle age differences

When tennis great Monica Seles, 41, and billionaire Tom Golisano, 73, recently announced their engagement, they became the latest high-profile May-December romance.

May-December relationships have at least an 11-year age span between the parties. The vast majority of May-December marriages take place between older men and younger women. According to the most recent U.S. census, 7.4 percent of husbands are 10 or more years older than their wives.

But that trend is starting to change. A 2003 AARP report, “Lifestyles, Dating and Romance,” found that 8 percent of women older than 39 were dating men at least 10 years younger.

Hollywood has long been a breeding ground for May-December romances. Charlie Chaplin famously wed Oona O’Neill when she was 18 and he was 54. Warren Beatty is 21 years older than his wife, Annette Bening. Harrison Ford, 70, is married to Calista Flockhart, 48. Clint Eastwood is 82; wife Dina …

May-December affairs: When women are the ‘December,’ it feels right and just

For many years, my view of May-December relationships was fairly traditional, informed mostly by observations in my early life in the Philippines.

“December,” in the case of local men, were older, almost exclusively wealthy and well-known businessmen, politicians or entertainers who looked for “May” women who were at least 15 years their junior, beautiful and educated (but not too much of either) and with some degree of penury to keep them dependent.

The “May” women were attracted more by money and power than by looks or youth, and accepted their questionable status as better than no status at all.

In the case of foreign men, many of whom came to the Philippines for this specific purpose, they were mostly retired workers with pensions, looking for what Americans call a “two-fer,” a giver of both care and sex. Their “May” women would be better described as girls, at least 25 years …