Amber Soletti, a 42-year-old who lives in the West Village, New York, had no luck when it came to finding love. She dated older guys and men of her own age, and while they were ‘well-established and articulate, she wasn’t physically attracted to them.
It was six years ago when she started dating students in her 20s and 30s, and she hasn’t looked back ever since.
Soletti, an event planner who regularly hosts dating mixers, says:
“Younger guys tend to be more active, have less baggage. You’re less likely to date a younger guy who’s been divorced, has children or has se*ual performance issues.”
She met Juan Cabrera, now 34, back in 2011 and soon fell in love. They got engaged in March this year.
Solleti notes that she’s seen an uptick in established women signing up to meet specifically younger ‘bucks’ at her dating events. She says:
“Millennial men are career-focused and want to travel with successful women and conquer the world together,”
These couplings are no longer seen as relationship outliers. The French President Emmanuel Macron, 39, for example, has a wife, Brigitte, who is 24 years older than him. Supermodel Heidi Klum, 43, has been dating art dealer Vito Schnabel, 30, and actress Gabrielle Union, 44, is married to NBA superstar Dwayne Wade, 35.
According to experts, this dynamic makes sense. Susan Winter, co-author of the book “Older Women, Younger Men: New Options for Love and Romance” says:
“Older successful men are used to being in control of a woman, and that doesn’t sit well with modern women. Younger men have grown up with working women and have worked for female bosses, so they’re more likely to treat women equally.”
And some of the people in these relationships agree.
Nicole Wipp, a 45-year-old attorney and entrepreneur found a perfect match in her husband, Marcus Sutherland, a 33-year-old paramedic.
“When you’re an ambitious woman, it’s very difficult — you either have to subsume what you wanna do for somebody else, or live with the struggle to fight your partner on top of business survival, and it’s a very unhealthy relationship. Dating somebody younger than myself, there’s an acceptance of ambitious women — it’s more normalized.”
They met back in 2002 when she was a law student and he was a sophomore undergraduate.
Wipp was immediately attracted to Sutherland’s youthful energy, and she says that older men tend to become cruel over time, while Marcus was so refreshing.
They did not start dating initially though, because Wipp says that she was aware of the numbers on his driver’s license. They began their romantic relationship in 2006, but they faced judgment from their families and friends.
“There were a lot of the ‘boy toy’ remarks, and I will say it mostly came from men my age — there’s a threatening aspect to a woman dating a younger man. Everybody thought this was a little phase, that I was just having a crisis.” – she says.
Friends and family started to accept their relationship after they’d been dating for a year and it became clear that Sutherland’s intentions were serious. They had an intimate beachside wedding in Hawaii in 2010, and they now have a 6-year-old son named Marek.
“I love that she loves me so much, and that I mean a lot to her. I can tell because she always makes me feel wanted.” – says Marcus.