Looking back at that relationship now, seven years later, there are so many things I wish someone had told me before I decided to become the Lolita to this guy’s Humbert².
That, by the way, is actually a comparison I made at the time, which is so gross to me now.
Not every one of these situations is going to be a soap opera about forbidden love and sexual corruption; sometimes it really is just about two people who really like and respect each other.
It’s totally doable, as long as you keep some things (*cough* MY INSANELY WISE WORDS BELOW *cough*) in mind.
That said, when you’re 17 or 18, it’s not really a big deal to hook up with someone who’s just a few years older than you. If you’re unsure, a good rule of thumb is to draw the line at getting involved with anyone who is older than you by a quarter of the years you’ve been alive.
(And many jurisdictions have added so-called “Romeo and Juliet” clauses to their statutory-rape laws to acknowledge this common sense.) Maybe your girlfriend or boyfriend went off to college, maybe you met a cute 21-year-old drummer at a show—these things happen and are fine as long as you feel comfortable with this older person. Are they respectful of your life outside of your relationship? And anyone under the age of 17 should probably wait a little while to be with any person whose age doesn’t also end in -teen. You have plenty of time to date people older than you, but not nearly as much to have a high-school romance. You have literally the rest of your earthly days to date people in their 20s and up, but you can never have a real high-school romance again after 12th grade is over.
power over teenagers and females adds extra force to the power differential in this kind of arrangement.
At some point we’ll do a piece on age differences in queer relationships, but this one is about teenage girls dating older dudes. (That said, most [but not all] of this advice will apply to sexual/romantic relationships involving people of any and all genders.) Finally, I don’t mean for this article to read as “A HORRIBLE OLD MAN TOOK MY YOUTHFUL INNOCENCE,” because that’s not what happened.
But if you’re looking to get into one of these situations, I’m guessing you don’t need to be told about the alluring/fun parts, and if you’re writing to us about it, it’s clear that you are weighing your decision carefully, and not being passively swept away or coerced.
Which means it can sometimes be tough to find things in common with other people who, well, aren’t that way, including potential homecoming dates.
So it’s totally fine to moon over people who are older than you!
By Amy Rose Spiegel One of the most frequent Just Wondering questions we get here at Rookie is some variation on the following: “I’m a teenager and I’m thinking about dating/am intensely attracted to a person who’s significantly older than me. ” Well, as someone who not only has always been interested in older dudes, but has also dated quite a few of them, I have some things to say about your situation, question-askers.
When I was 15, I was dating a 28-year-old (cue gasping).