My younger partner (I’m 41, she’s 26) seems insatiable. I am worried that I won’t be able to keep up with her libido forever — does that mean that we are doomed to have only a fling? Or are there ways to make this work long-term, if we get that far?
If you are willing to be honest about how you are feeling, you and your girlfriend have as good a chance of working things out as anyone else.
Being 15 years older than her doesn’t preclude you from admitting to insecurity, and sharing your concerns sets a healthy precedent for honest communication. Your girlfriend may even be relieved to know that you want a night off occasionally.
Sometimes people — consciously or unconsciously — conform to stereotypes, and she may believe that an insatiable sexual appetite is part of the “younger partner” brief.
Similarly, be aware of how sugar daddy or older man stereotypes might inform your own behaviour.
If the two of you can move beyond guessing and have a conversation about your sexual differences and similarities, you have nothing to worry about. Everyone’s libido flags from time to time.
Anxiety, tiredness, illness, hangovers; a multitude of daily challenges can take their toll on sexual frequency, but eating well, keeping fit, and making sure you get enough sleep can do a lot to counter the impact of everyday stressors.
Don’t be tempted by supplements claiming to be natural Viagra. They don’t work and can cause serious side-effects.
You are probably aware that sex drive declines with age, and that over the years you are likely to find that your erection becomes a little less firm.
However, in healthy men these changes are gradual and generally don’t present significant problems. If you experience sudden changes in libido or erectile function you do need to see a doctor because these changes can be an early warning sign of underlying illness.
However, even if this turned out to be the case, treating the underlying condition usually sorts out any sexual side-effects.
Also, don’t forget that if you stay with your girlfriend for the long term, she is unlikely to remain sexually insatiable forever.
Over time her libido will fluctuate just as yours does, particularly if you end up having children together, so enjoy her appetite while it lasts. You clearly want this relationship to work and there is no reason why it shouldn’t.
Car-crash commitments between very rich old men and very pretty young women have endorsed negative public perceptions of age-gap relationships, but no relationship comes with a guarantee.
In fact, with a 42% divorce rate, the chance of any commitment lasting long-term is pretty much a coin toss.
Some research has shown that marrying a younger partner in midlife increases the risk of divorce, particularly if a couple have not been together for very long before they tie the knot.
Recent data from a study of 3,000 people found couples with a 10-year age gap were 39% more likely to divorce compared with a divorce rate of 3% for couples with a one-year age difference.
However, other studies have shown precisely the opposite. The British Office for National Statistics found age differences were largely irrelevant when it came to the likelihood of divorce. The research revealed that in couples where the man was eight years older than the woman, the risk of divorce was 36%.
Finally, some worries are constructive because they lead to positive behaviour changes. However, in this case, worrying is pointless.
Masochistic worrying is rooted in fear, but you have nothing to be afraid of, so stop fretting about some unknown point in the future and appreciate having what most men dream of while you have it.
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