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#73259 - 05/30/05 11:18 AM attraction?
puppy Offline

Registered: 05/28/05
Posts: 129
Loc: earth
though its much too late to still be up, i find myself lying awake, trying to find some little bits of honesty within myself. soul searching maybe. something keeps coming to mind. this is pretty embarassing to put into words, but i think it might help to get another perspeective on it. awhile back, my shrink and i were talking about relationships, etc. i have always 'dated' men older than myself. ive only really had one relationship. he was quite a lot older than me. my shrink made a comment about me 'dating men who are father figures'. which i totally dismissed at the time and actually resented the fact that shed said it. and id probably still like to kick her for putting the idea in my head. but i find myself thinking about it and wondering if its an issue that i should be focusing my attention on. id like to think attraction is natural and i shouldnt question it. i cant say i have any conscious alterior motives with the people i choose to date. yeah maybe there is some subconscious stupid psychobabble reason why i do the things i do, but is that something to worry about? for arguments sake, we will say i date older men because i want a father figure in my life. is that wrong? does that make a relationship any less healthy and real? i dont know. i already have so much angst when it comes to relationships, i might as well add some more lol. i am now always second guessing myself when i find someone attractive or interesting. i dont want to have to put some arbitrary age limit on my (non existent) love life.


#73260 - 05/30/05 02:06 PM Re: attraction?
sophiesdad Offline

Registered: 04/30/05
Posts: 462
Loc: Florida
I wouldn't stress too much about it. I've seen many couples who are years apart in age and lead happy, satisfying lives. I think that sometimes we over-analyze how we behave. IMHO, I would only be concerned if it is a destructive factor in my life. Who knows what makes the mind "tick" as far as attractions are concerned?


There are no unresolved issues - they just didn't resolve themselves the way we would have liked. "Grinder and Bandler - Neuro-Linguistic Programming"

#73261 - 06/03/05 03:29 PM Re: attraction?
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Hi Puppy,

What especially interested me about your post was your concern that there might be "psychological" factors influencing you when you feel you are attracted to someone.

I think it would be safe to say that all feelings of attraction, whether for the same or opposite sex, and for people of whatever age, are conditioned by psychological factors. People who study such things would tell you that these emotions don't just appear by chance, any more than a rainy day appears by chance. There are specific inputs in operation, and why we like or love certain people and not others is complicated and more or less psychological to begin with.

I think your therapist is acting in your interest when she raises this subject. You may react with unease, but that would be no surprise since your abuser was an older male figure. The question is probably: what do you want and need from an older man? Perhaps you just desire an older person to make good a general sense of void, a kind of older male presence that you lacked in your life. I suppose this isn't problematic in itself, but it would become so if fact what you are doing is looking for a replacement for what you wish you had had as a father. That would be unfair to the person who has to deal with this impossible task.

On age difference itself, I don't recall you saying how old you are. If you are, say, 25, and the man you like is 50, then so long as neither of you is carrying harmful emotional baggage into the connection it should be okay. But do you mean casual dates or a quest for a relationship? But of you would have to think honestly if you would be good for each other in the long term. The older partner, for example, will age and change in interests and abilities in ways that may cause problems, and he is likely to die while the younger partner is still in good health. And so on.

If you have dealt with these issues honestly and still want to be together, then I would say bravo and go for it.


Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#73262 - 06/03/05 09:48 PM Re: attraction?
ScottyTodd Offline
Administrator Emeritus
Registered: 02/12/03
Posts: 1561
Loc: Pennsylvania
Hi Puppy - I read your post and think that Larry has hit on something. I usually find that young guys who are attracted to older persons, in your case men, are looking for that missing relationship - security, being cared for, stability, feeling of acceptance - which they weren't able to find in earlier life. Generally, if the perp was an older man, they were able to perp on the victim because the victim was looking for a relationship with an older man, someone (like a dad) to pay them attention. It became, at least in the beginning, a tradeoff. He got his needed attention and paid for it in sexual exploitation.
NOW - does that mean that because we desire a younger-older relationship, that it's bad, warped, weird - not really. Both people are getting their needs met. It can be a healthy thing. Danger is, if our needs change. If one is fearful the other will leave them, that one will find fault with that other partner and abandon them before they (at least think they) are "abandoned". I hope this makes sense.

I feel there is nothing wrong with the age difference if, like Larry says, it is really a healthy, respected relationship. Both are consenting adults. Both partners are entering knowing why they are attracted to each other.


If you think you can or you can't - you're right!.......anon
It's never too late to have a happy childhood!.....anon
You're very normal for the abnormal situation you've been through..............S. Todd


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