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A study released in 2003 by the United Kingdom's Office for National Statistics concluded that the proportion of women in England and Wales marrying younger men rose from 15% to 26% between 19.Another study also showed a higher divorce rate as the age difference rose for when either the woman was older or the man was older.By the time I was at Uni in the early 1980s, things had relaxed to the point where people were sleeping with people but you sort of had to attempt an awkward week-long relationship after to avoid a serious round of gossip and judgment.
An overarching evolutionary theory which can provide an explanation for the above mechanisms and strategies adopted by individuals which leads to age disparity in relationships is called Life History theory Life History theory posits that individuals have to divide energy and resources between activities (as energy and resources devoted to one task cannot be used for another task) and this is shaped by natural selection.
Parental Investment Theory refers to the value that is placed on a potential mate based on reproductive potential and reproductive investment.
Age-disparity relationships have been documented for most of recorded history and have been regarded with a wide range of attitudes dependant on sociocultural norms and legal systems. Relationships with age disparity of all kinds have been observed with both men and women as the older or younger partner.
In various cultures, older men and younger women often seek one another for sexual or marital relationships.
Differences in age preferences for mates can stem from evolutionary mating strategies and age preferences in sexual partners may vary cross culturally.
There are also alternative social theories for age differences in relationships as well as suggested reasons for 'alternative' age-hypogamous relationships.
A British psychological study published in Evolution and Human Behavior in 2010 concluded that men and women, in general, continued to follow traditional gender roles when searching for mates.
The study found that, as supported by other academic studies, most men preferred younger, physically attractive women, while most women, of any age, preferred successful, established men their age or older.
A good number of millennials are already happy to use wearable technology during sex. Do you think sex is being ruined by online dating and Tinder culture?