Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Questions and discussion about your sexuality and how it's a part of who you are as a person.
fynnrye
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Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:07 am

For the longest time, even since my early years of elementary school, I've always been attracted to women older than me. Yes, I've had those few crushes on girls my age but, even until now, I've never had a sexual attraction to anyone around my age group. Whenever I see someone out in public or online and I think to myself "wow, she's really attractive" or maybe when I'm simply in conversation with someone and find their personality attractive, they are always much older than me. I have even had sexual attachments to women twice my age, and it's becoming a problem because it's distracting me from what I should be accomplishing in my life. Not once, but twice have I had my heart broken because of my sexual fantasies, and it's led me into a deep dark hole. I've had the unfortunate guilt of entering rebound relationships with girls I think I find attractive but know I don't, breaking their hearts, and I feel awful about it. I have heard of tiny teenage crushes on older folks, but I don't know if my sexual dreams are too much. I really just want to know why I'm in the position in the first place. It's hard enough being homosexual, but to add this on top just makes my life, and my love life, very difficult. Hopefully, someone out there can reach out, or even relate to my issues. Thanks (my apologies for my awful writing and most probably repetitive words).

Sam W
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby Sam W » Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:41 am

Hi Fynnrye,

I'm sorry that you're finding these feelings are making your life more difficult. You're right that it's common for younger people to have crushes on or feel attracted to older people, and those crushes can actually be quite intense. There's ultimately nothing wrong with those crushes, but since they're causing you distress they're worth taking a deeper look at. The tricky part is figuring out why your crushes seem to only arise on people much older than you, and there's no guarantee you'll be able to ever fully figure out where this attraction pattern comes from. For example, are there certain traits you're attracted to that you associate with people older than you or think won't be present in people your own age?

fynnrye
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:42 pm

Yes, if I were to describe the differences in common traits between my age group and the group I'm attracted to I would say:
- Maturity. A lot of people my age are extremely immature and expect way too much from their partners.
- I find older people easier to talk to. Many of my friends say that I sound/ speak as if I'm in my fifties (subject matter, hobbies, etc.) and when it comes to discussing things with older folks, I find it much easier. It's rather embarrassing to talk to people my age and expect an answer as if they're actually interested in/ know what I have to say.
- I would mention the connections between passive and dominant behaviors and how they may affect my attraction, I have no idea how it could considering I've been in multiple relationships where I've been put in both positions, and everyone's different so I can't always expect passive or dominant from anyone older (or younger even).
I think that's about it though. I do have to mention one thing that I've thought deeply on: Whenever I become attracted to a person, that person is the one I think about when I need comfort, when I need to sleep and when I wake up and the beds cold. I seem to be extremely clingy about these crushes, although I wouldn't know if I would be in a relationship considering I've never been in one with anyone older than me. I don't know if this clinginess adds to the list of reasons why I find older people attractive, but it's all I can really distinguish.

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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby Sam W » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:32 pm

Okay, so what you're describing are some very common reasons why plenty of young people say they're attracted to people older than them. And while their are some patterns in maturity or interests depending on age, there are plenty of teenagers who act like adults and plenty of adults who act like a cliche version of a teenager. So, what you'll likely find as you move through life and encounter more people is that there are people your age (or close to it) that have the traits you're looking for in a partner that you thought would only be present in someone older. You mention that yo feel like people you're age expect too much from their partners, and that you don't feel listened to or understood in conversation. Can you tell me a little more about those things?

It's also pretty common to use crushes as a means of self-comfort, especially if you feel like there are types of affection or connection that are missing from your life. So that may have less to do with the age of your crushes and more to do with the nature of the crushes themselves.

fynnrye
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:09 pm

To list an example, I dated this one girl, not too long ago, and I broke up with her because she expected too much from me. In my mind, expecting too much from a partner can be things like:
- expects materialistic gifts, even if they put immense effort into creating something (I spent hours revising and re-writing a poem for my girlfriend, and when I gave it to her, she told me it was "horrible". To be honest, it seemed as if she appreciated the thought, but she was insensitive. Maybe it's just me, or maybe it was just that relationship, but in all of the relationships I've been in (with people my age that is), there is always this sense of insensitivity of the other's feelings.
- expects a change in another for the benefit of themselves: my girlfriend would always tell me that I'm boring, weird, and just not interesting to begin with. At first, I took it as a joke but soon discovered that she actually meant those things, and not in any sort of playful way. I remember, one relationship I thoroughly enjoyed, my only male-female relationship, he would listen to me talk for hours, and never say anything negative about whatever I was interested in. He encouraged me to be interested in all types of things, and never criticized me for my interests or hobbies. In my most recent relationship on the other hand, as I had mentioned, she never had anything good to say about me. I really didn't expect much from her, other than her love, fidelity, and to at least comfort me when I felt self-conscious around her or with her about myself. She did the opposite and just made me "feel like shit". She seemed as though she wanted me to change to make me seem less weird in the relationship. She even criticized the smallest things like my taste in music, or my awkwardness to certain situations. I eventually tried changing myself so we would stay together. It seems out of a majority of the relationships I've been in throughout my youth, they all expect something more than the simplicity of love and comfort out of a relationship. What I really mean, is that people my age often expect that if they are in a relationship, it will somehow raise their social status or popularity and it's become a contest. I feel like if I were to find someone older, who I find attractive, and who doesn't expect me to give them this higher class, I would be happier.

fynnrye
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:16 pm

And to give you a little more context, I've always been attracted to people older than me, it's not something I sort of developed. Even when I didn't know what attraction was in my younger youth, now that I look back on it, I fancied older women. I mean, I didn't even know I was gay at that age either, but I distinctively remember being constantly nervous to enter one of the classrooms at my elementary school in 2nd grade. I didn't know why, and the teacher was very kind. Now that I look back I realize I had a huge crush on her (and still do tbh). I also remember finding an actress very attractive; and I know it wasn't "attractive" as in I thought she was beautiful platonically, I thought she was "attractive" sexually, even though children of that age aren't quite capable of realizing those emotions.

amity
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby amity » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:47 am

Hey, Fynnrye,

Hope it's okay that I'm jumping into this thread. You sound like you have a great deal of self awareness, which can serve you well in life. Like Sam W said, it is not necessarily bad or uncommon for younger people to have crushes on older people. It is very common for people to think about their crushes when they are falling asleep, waking up, and needing comfort. Still, it sounds like you are dealing with some really difficult emotions, and it's good that you are reaching out to talk to someone about it.

You mention that people around your own age tend to have different expectations about relationships-- maybe they want social status and popularity, or they might try to change who you are to suit their own wants. It is true that some young people may not have much experience behind them yet to have developed strong relationship skills, but plenty of older individuals may not have the best relationship skills either. People's motivations and expectations about relationships may vary with age, but also from person to person. You may find friends or romantic partners close to your own age who are similar to you in interests and sensitivity, or who at least appreciate and encourage those qualities you have. Finding these connections might be easier if you are involved in any groups (such as elective classes, clubs, or volunteering) with people who share some of your hobbies or values.

You mention a past relationship that felt supportive and enjoyable to you. I'm glad that you had that experience, because even if that person ultimately wasn't right for you, you can still look for similar good qualities for your next relationships. In healthy relationships, you deserve to feel supported and encouraged the majority of the time (although no relationship is perfect and completely happy all of the time), instead of criticized and brought down constantly.

fynnrye
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Sat Jun 09, 2018 5:46 pm

(To Sam W and amity) Thank you both, now I feel, at least in the slightest bit, more comfortable with myself and my feelings.

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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby Siân » Sat Jun 16, 2018 5:23 am

Hi fynnrye :) I'm glad you've found the conversation here helpful. Did you have anything else you wanted to ask or talk about further?

fynnrye
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Re: Why am I attracted to people older than me?

Unread postby fynnrye » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:13 pm

It's undecided as to what I need to ask exactly but for now, I have really appreciated the help I've gotten so far, and I have no further impeding inquiries. Thanks, Sian! :D


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