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February 22, 2017 4:20 AM   Subscribe

I need a script/strategy for dealing with this sex situation that keeps popping up with men around age 30.

I am 35, f. I have never been attracted to men who are younger than me because of my feeling that the sex would probably be bad. In the past year or so a number of men age 28-31 have expressed interest in me, I think because of demographics (men my age are probably more likely to be married) and because I look and act much younger than I am. (Like to stay out late, etc.) So I decided to give it a go.

It has been the most awful sex I have ever had in my life. Issues:

- TOO FAST. One guy started taking off my shirt at the same time he leaned in for a first kiss, another guy after ten minutes of making out (first time we'd ever done so): "Should I go get a condom?"
- No oral sex. See above should I go get a condom. Occasionally also accompanied by the expectation that I should do it to them though.
- No particular interest in my pleasure. Yes, I can tell them what to do, yes, I can ask them to keep going, but it's such a turnoff that someone would actually come in two minutes then roll over to go to sleep. Seriously, I didn't think that actually happened in real life.
- Premature ejaculation. Most of these guys I didn't have intercourse with because I was so turned off by the above, but they came within like, two minutes of manual play, and I'm not a handjob queen or anything. I understand this is not entirely within one's control, but with all of the above put together I'm going to guess they never developed that sense of awareness/control that allows men to last a bit longer.

I feel like this might be a generational thing, because five years ago when I was dating men my own age I didn't run into these issues. Maybe it's just a string of bad luck?

A couple times I have been so shocked that I didn't say what I wanted to say at the time. A couple times when I tried to talk to these men it went very poorly - including one guy who tried to explain to me how women's bodies work....

So what do I say? Should I even bother? Or is this attitude ingrained at this point? I want something that communicates not just that this is what I prefer, but that this is not really the norm/good sex practice.

I think it's in my interest to keep dating in this age bracket because:
- All of the people I've been in long-term relationships with are people I'd never have gone out with if I saw them described on a dating site, so I'm trying to be more open-minded.
- The numbers game. I need to cast a wide net.
- As I've gotten older, I am starting to feel like my energy levels/outlook on life jive a bit more with men in this age bracket.
- Men my own age don't seem to be interested in me. So often on dating sites I will look at profiles for men age 35 and the desired age range listed is 24-36. I find it gross, or at least indicative of different values (youth/beauty, maybe desire for children), and I don't bother to message these guys (Should I?).

Any thoughts? Thanks!
posted by unannihilated to Human Relations (26 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

I would chalk these guys up more so up to a string of bad luck.

I'm not sure what you're asking, though - are you asking for what to say, like, in a personal ad to weed these guys out? Or are you asking what to say to a guy when this kind of thing is actually happening?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:40 AM on February 22, 2017 [2 favorites]

I am asking what to say when these things happen in the moment. I am asking how to deal with these men in general - toss them to the curb as I have been, attempt to rehabilitate, or avoid this age bracket altogether?
posted by unannihilated at 4:42 AM on February 22, 2017

It sounds to me like you're dating dudes who have not had a whole lot of sex with women before. Or at least not with multiple women, and are remembering what (they thought) worked with the girlfriend they had for 4 months right after college.

You're dating in my age group right now, and my experience with them is that there has been a vast spectrum of ability/eagerness/anatomical knowledge on their end...but by and large all of the ones who have had multiple committed relationships by the time they got to me haven't disappointed.

I hate to say it but maybe the reason some of these guys are seeking out a woman a few years older is that they're looking for someone with more experience who can teach them how not to suck in bed? Either that or you've been disproportionately unlucky.

It's up to you whether you want to be these guys' training wheels. You don't have to. I'm definitely over it.

You can probably weed some of them out by asking pointed, probing questions about their relationship history. "Have you been on Okcupid long?" "How many dates have you been on?" "How many girlfriends have you had?" "Did you date anyone in college?" "Tell me about your last serious relationship?" etc.
posted by phunniemee at 4:48 AM on February 22, 2017 [5 favorites]

As for what to say when it's happening, you should probably decide for yourself if this is something you want to try to "fix" or if you want to set the whole thing on fire.

If you want to try and fix it, tell him to stop, take a break, say "we'll get back to that" and do something else like get up and get something to eat and create as much of a neutral moment as possible. Then tell the guy what the problem was and be very clear that next time you would like him to ______. (Sure, his ego will be bruised, but why is it always women's jobs to make men feel OK about how much they suck?) Then maybe put on a movie or something, table sex for the night or at least a little while. Repeat as necessary.

If you don't want to try to fix it, and let me stress again that you do not have to, well. I have definitely told someone to put his clothes back on, gather his things, and leave my house before. So that's an option.
posted by phunniemee at 4:55 AM on February 22, 2017

Just wanted to mention - and then I'll try to get out of the thread - that I've actually met most of these men in person through real-life channels than through OKC. They usually think I am closer to their age. So I don't think I am being sought out for my age.
posted by unannihilated at 4:57 AM on February 22, 2017

I started having this experience a lot more commonly with men of ALL ages in the past three years (since my divorce), when previously I consistently had good sex. My theory is that I used to be more selective subconsciously than I am now (because I’m more desperate now), I’m older so less desirable to many people, and, most importantly, for various reasons I’m ending up with people who treat it more like a hook-up. Some are awful because they’re selfish douchebags, but many are because they’re nervous about doing things that make them seem more loving or “into” me than they want to, because they don’t want to give me the wrong idea or because they’re shy and holding back or because they’re nervous and don’t want to put themselves out there.

Often I don’t bother seeing them again. But if I sense that they have potential that they’re withholding, and I feel physically safe with them, I’ve said (in a joking tone) thing like “Hey, just because you came, sex isn’t over!” or “I didn’t come yet” or “Intercourse doesn’t get me off.” This has mixed results. Masturbating in front of them also has mixed results; half will step up, half will just cheerfully watch.

Sometimes I’ll instead bring it up after they’ve left over text. With some people this feels more comfortable to me. Basically if they ask to get together again I’ll tell them that the sex didn’t work for me, and ask them if they’re willing to change things up if we try again.

I don’t like to say this, and maybe it’s a statistical anomaly among my partners, but I most consistently get good sex from confident attractive alpha male types. I’m more likely to be interested in dating the nerds, but the “cool kids” I suspect both have more diverse experience and are less likely to feel like they have something to prove. They’ve been markedly good in bed and less likely to be into dominance power play, which I hate. I really didn’t want this to be true (I root for the underdogs, and would expect them to try harder!) but it is my experience.
posted by metasarah at 5:51 AM on February 22, 2017 [8 favorites]

I don't think this question is answerable as-is (what should I say to guys who are bad at sex) because it's two steps ahead of where you are. What you say depends on what you want to happen, and no one can decide that for you. We don't even know what these encounters are - intentional one night stands, flings, sex buddies, are you looking for a relationship?

After both of those things are answered, it'd be a lot easier to give advice, but generally speaking there's really only two ways to go with this: you either try and help and coach them to be better (which it seems like you're really not interested in playing this game), or you just tell them how it is. Be blunt. There's no need to spare the feelings of a man who is using you as a handjob machine. The guy is getting undressed during the first kiss? "Woah, man. This isn't going to be fun for me if you're trying to get to the finish line that fast". A guy was obviously just worried about getting off via foreplay and was never intending to even touch you : "That was really disappointing. I'm not interested in seeing you again". If he just rolls over after he's finished/not tending to your needs :" Wow, you're not even going to try are you?"

Also, demand your needs first. Just literally dont put your hand on his dick. If he does it for you, take it off. Repeat until he either gets the hint or is like "why aren't you doing anything?" "Well, neither are you".
- Men my own age don't seem to be interested in me. So often on dating sites I will look at profiles for men age 35 and the desired age range listed is 24-36. I find it gross, or at least indicative of different values (youth/beauty, maybe desire for children), and I don't bother to message these guys (Should I?).
I, too, find it gross. And it's not just you, it's a problem. I don't think it stops at the physical, either, these guys want an impressionable person for a reason. You could message those guys, and at first it probably wouldn't be a problem since you tend to skew younger. But once you do age it's going to cause problems down the line
posted by FirstMateKate at 6:16 AM on February 22, 2017 [5 favorites]

Well I'm about your age, I look younger, and I got asked out a lot by men younger than me. I've been with guys 12 years older than me that had absolutely no clue, and guys a couple of years younger that also had no clue. Some people just have no clue. Other times it's been sexual incompatibility, too.

Right now, my fiance is a significant deal younger than me. However, when we first got together he'd had more experience than me, and the sex was pretty amazing, even though I was kinda rusty when we first got together. I'm not sure if it was so good because of his experience, but I don't feel it's only that. It's also a consideration for me and my pleasure and a lack of ego that he brought to it. He likes it when I feel good, that makes him feel good, ergo, he is very attentive. If anything, I'm the one with hangups about certain things, brought about by society I suppose-- but he is absolutely willing to please me and tells me often. Attitude makes up a lot of it.

So, I think you just haven't met the right guy for you. Doesn't mean that all younger guys are necessarily all wham bam kinda dudes, only in it for themselves. Like any generalization, there are those that live up to it, and exceptions to those rules. Yes, there are a LOT of dudebros out there that are pretty selfish in the sack (and in general) -- and I know some of those dudes, but there are pretty serious young guys who may be a good match; some of them may not have the experience, but may be willing to learn, and you have to decide if that's ok for you. But I wouldn't give up just yet.

Basically, communication is key. If communication nets you bad results (like that dude who mansplained your own body to you), then you know that guy is a miss. The right guy will work on things with you regardless of your respective ages.

Good luck!
posted by Dimes at 6:35 AM on February 22, 2017 [2 favorites]

For the record, nobody considers 5 years to be a generation gap. Whatever is going on here, age is not the primary factor.

It might be different if you were talking college grad vs. high school senior, but you're not.
posted by SaltySalticid at 6:35 AM on February 22, 2017 [15 favorites]

You say you are meeting these men in real life and you like to go out late. Are you meeting them when you are out late? Maybe at a bar or whatever and going home with them? If that's the case, and it's just a hook up situation, these guys don't care about your pleasure because they don't plan on seeing you again, they just want to get off.

If you are meeting them out in the wild and then going on proper dates, then I can't help you there.
posted by greta simone at 6:44 AM on February 22, 2017 [12 favorites]

I think by the time you're in bed with them it's hard to do very much except what you've described.

You can try being pre-emptive, when you're talking/flirting with them, give hints about what you like. "I really like kissing", "I love making out", "I love massages", "I love men's hands", stuff like that, and see how they respond, also physically get in contact with them and see if they have good body awareness, the good ones have what I call "good touch", which means they know how to touch you in a flirty but respectful way, like putting their hand lightly around your waist or touching your arm or hand, giving good hugs. I've had good results with that in hook up situations and in dating situations. I've dated in the same age range with good results (where I'm also 3-6 years older) so I don't think it's their age, I'd chalk it up to bad luck.

Also agreed it's a good sign if they've had at least a couple longterm relationships already, those have been the best experiences for me.
posted by lafemma at 7:20 AM on February 22, 2017 [4 favorites]

They usually think I am closer to their age. So I don't think I am being sought out for my age.

In real math, if a man is 30 years old and [he thinks] you are 30 years old, you are the same age. In dating math, if a man is 30 years old and you are 30 years old, you are the older woman.

In real math, if a woman is 1 or 2 years older, that's a difference of 1-2 years. In dating math, if a woman is 1 or 2 years older, that's a difference of 5-10 years.

Of course #NOTALLMEN... just the majority.

(Speaking from my NYC experience as a woman over 30 who's always looked 10 years younger).
posted by rada at 7:29 AM on February 22, 2017 [4 favorites]

For the record, nobody considers 5 years to be a generation gap.

The number of messages I got from 24-26 year old dudes talking about how they wanted to get with an "older woman" when I was on okcupid with a 30 next to my name would astound you.
posted by phunniemee at 7:55 AM on February 22, 2017 [20 favorites]

I blame porn
posted by JenThePro at 8:21 AM on February 22, 2017 [25 favorites]

I blame porn

I was thinking exactly this as I was reading.

I wish I had advice but I just don't even know how to react to these situations of someone taking your shirt off before they have even finished the first kiss. I mean I knew that men can be amazingly dumb, but it is just astounding that they can be this dumb.

As someone in their 40's trying to date..... I think I may just go get more cats.
posted by CoffeeHikeNapWine at 9:09 AM on February 22, 2017 [3 favorites]

I think feeling like you have to cast a wide net is leading you to accept crappy behavior. Are these guys interested / respectful / generally following social norms before kissing / clothes come off? Because more weeding out before it gets to the point they're being sexually clueless should help. You could also try kissing them in a more public place first, to see how that goes while it's still easy to say "welp, hafta get up early, gotta go".

As for what to say: "too fast", "slow down", "go down on me", "I have to go to the bathroom" (for stopping the situation and figuring out what to say / whether you want them to just put their clothes on and go home). I get why you want to indicate to these guys that how they're behaving is clueless, but I don't think you can effectively do that, short of putting on your clothes and leaving.

I have found that at 35, the pickings online are a lot slimmer than they were at 30, and I have better luck meeting people through friends / at meetup type events. It also gives some sense of their social context, what sort of reputation they have in the group.
posted by momus_window at 9:34 AM on February 22, 2017

The number of messages I got from 24-26 year old dudes talking about how they wanted to get with an "older woman" when I was on okcupid with a 30 next to my name would astound you.


The number of men just two years younger than me (all into their 30s so way too long in the tooth themselves to play boy toy to my never-married Mrs. Robinson) who referred to me as an "older woman" or asked me solicitously what it was like to be with a younger man would knock you dead.

And honestly, I nip things in the bud or drop things fast if things are happening in a sexual direction that don't make me feel valued and communicated with. That has meant long fallow periods (and some outraged guys who didn't get why there wasn't a date 2 when they tried to force tongue on date 1, even though they spent a lot on dinner!), but you really do teach men how teach you, either implicitly by rejecting crass advances that don't feel right to you as a person, or explicitly by working with someone you see earnestness and promise with.
posted by blue suede stockings at 10:28 AM on February 22, 2017 [5 favorites]

I don't think it's the age bracket on its own, there's some other thing going on. Who are these guys, and how are you meeting them, like in what context? Is there much conversation at all? Are you connecting with them on other levels (even if it's just for one night)? Not to blame you for any of those experiences (about which, I'm so sorry :/), but I think, not all but many times, a mansplainer of any age could potentially be filtered out slightly in advance of him having an opportunity to sexsplain. So I think, spend more time talking (and filtering) up front, and expend energy on communicating around mishaps on those you actually connect with, who are open to it. (Even if the whole exchange only lasts a night.)
posted by cotton dress sock at 10:30 AM on February 22, 2017 [3 favorites]

P.S. I just realized that the example I used may have made my comment seem like "slut shaming" or "that's what you get by not making him wait for the heavy petting!" and that's not what I was trying to get at at all! (I have gone further after dinner when it felt right and it was what I wanted and I was having fun with someone I trusted and felt comfortable with and was very attracted to, with zero regrets!)

It's really just that if you consistently set boundaries at whatever level you need to in the moment (including, I don't feel strongly about this to even make out, all the way to, "no you can't get a condom yet, no I'm not ready to have my shirt removed, no, if my orgasm doesn't matter to you there is no open invitation to continue dating" those vibes (and explicit rejections) might go a long way in acting as jerk repellent to keep a string of encounters like this from happening in a row, I think. At least that's been my experience.
posted by blue suede stockings at 10:43 AM on February 22, 2017

Gay guy chiming in: there's nothing wrong (and plenty right) with insisting on slowing down the process in the heat of the moment. Saying it with a smile, in hushed, encouraging tones, may get more of a reciprocated response than a cold, clinical, "you're doing this wrong." Of course, either of those responses are dependent on your level of interest in keeping the particular fellow in the moment. If it's off, and off too wildly to be salvaged, it's not your duty to let those two minutes pass before you ask someone to stop, get dressed, and go.

This is a long way of apologizing for the fact that, yes, in situations like this, if you want something you're going to need to say so--and probably teach them patiently how to do it.

By way of script, "Hey, hey, I don't want you to come yet... let's do (XXX) first. Can you (XXX) my (XXX)? Like this (). Show me how slowly you can do that, it's so hot..."

Whether or not these men are experiences, it sounds like they have a lot of urgency. You may be turning them on more than you know. You have room to be flattered by this, even if it's a frustration. Work with the positives, right?

posted by late afternoon dreaming hotel at 11:46 AM on February 22, 2017

You're dating/hooking up with dweebs for whatever reason, and that I can't help you with.

Age has nothing to do with it. I'm 32 now and ten years ago I and every male whose sex lives I knew anything about knew better than to behave like this.
posted by cmoj at 11:56 AM on February 22, 2017 [6 favorites]

I don't blame porn; I'd blame the way it is so easily accessed on the internet now. Too much of a good thing and all that. At the least it might explain the premature ejaculators.
posted by NoraCharles at 6:09 PM on February 22, 2017 [1 favorite]

- All of the people I've been in long-term relationships with are people I'd never have gone out with if I saw them described on a dating site, so I'm trying to be more open-minded.

I get what you mean and I think this is a good instinct on principle, but in this case perhaps your net is a little too wide -- you're investing too many hours of your evening in dudes with whom you have not enough sexual chemistry, who, it turns out, are oafs or boors or just...ugh.

If you're not already, I'd suggest starting out with quick coffee dates to give the chemistry and general attitude a once-over before you bother with a date. (As for the selfish oafishness, honestly, I have seen that at every age bracket.)
posted by desuetude at 11:53 PM on February 22, 2017 [1 favorite]

Also, if it's clear they're flaking out, pulling back and literally taking their hand and putting it on your crotch is pretty effective. Sometimes there isn't time for this before they come, but doing it after they come works pretty well, if they haven't completely turned you off by then.
posted by metasarah at 6:51 AM on February 23, 2017

Sex is about pleasure. If you are not experiencing the kinds of pleasure you like, then your best bet is to take responsibility for it. You cannot control someone else's behavior, but you can tell them about what kinds of pleasure you like and want to have.

I don't see any scripts here, so let me try:

"Wow, that is a hot cock! I want it inside me, but, like most women, I can't get off from that alone. So I want you to go down on me. I promise I will make it worth your while..."

If you can come up with some variation of this, you are much more likely to get what you want. It starts by saying something positive, makes a clear request, and promises reciprocity. Use different words if mine aren't your style.

Having said this, I think the problem you are asking about isn't the real problem you are trying to address. You are unenthiastic about having sex with these men, and it is leading to dull, uninspired sex. Yes, you should start messaging men your own age, because that is who you want to date and that is who you want to have sex with. This amounts to asking for what you want, which is a very important step in actually getting it. You said this wasn't a problem with men your own age, and I sense that's because you were into the sex you were having.
posted by Mr. Fig at 12:06 PM on February 23, 2017

I agree with those who have mentioned porn, and I say that as someone who is generally porn-positive (but all too aware of how lousy most porn is). It sounds like you're encountering guys who base their expectations of you and how they should behave on what they see in porn.

I'm a dude in my early 40s, and as I grow older I'm having a harder time remaining positive about porn. I grew up with relatively good sex education and an understanding that porn was fantasy, but I worry about the sexual socialization of younger men - I think a lot of unhealthy stuff is being normalised by the lame, formulaic ubiquity of mainstream porn, and that's what you're running into.
posted by werkzeuger at 12:06 PM on February 24, 2017

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