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Posted by / 17-May-2016 20:06

How’s this for kismet: One fateful day in 1966, singer Tony Bennett met and took a photo with a couple after one of his shows.

Little did Bennett know at the time, his future wife was there, too: She was the baby growing inside the belly of the female fan.

In both cases, this may be due to the allure of the possibilities that come with mixing ages, interests and backgrounds.

Many women who have reached an above-average level of success in their careers grew up in a time when there weren’t that many women in positions of great leadership or authority.

Online dating stats bare out that average joes are just as enamored with younger women as their famous counterparts.

Each example disgusts me anew in a way that’s probably not entirely defensible: I think I might be angrier about these couples than I am about a good many important political issues.

Through the years many have watched, or already understood their mothers and sisters to have a powerful say in how they regard women.

Though a gender gap most certainly remains, there are many, many more women in positions of leadership, who do not back down from challenges, who compete in many of the same fields as men, and who work side by side with men.

)As a woman over 30, I decided to try to get to the bottom of this conundrum by asking a series of straight, unmarried men in their 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s to find out why some actually prefer to date “older” women.But even though their older woman-younger man relationship may be among the world's most visible, it's not that unusual anymore.Braving "robbing the cradle" jokes, almost one-third of women between ages 40 and 69 are dating younger men (defined as 10 or more years younger).Bennett and Benedetto may make for a particularly striking example (“Lovely fetus you’ve got there, ma’am, here’s my number, have it call it me in 18 years or so”), but older men getting romantically involved with younger women is hardly a rare phenomenon.Every day, there seems to be another outrageous new celebrity coupling announced via pictures of some May-December frolicking: Jennifer Lawrence sharing a lollipop with Darren Aronofsky; Sean Penn dating Vincent D’Onofrio’s daughter; Mel Gibson having his ninth child with his 26-year-old girlfriend; Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen double-dating with their 47-year-old and 58-year-old respective beaus; Leonardo Di Caprio’s sending another lady-love packing upon her reaching the ripe old age of 25.

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Parties, rock concerts, nightclubs—I dated the way I should have when I was younger: for fun, without an eye toward marriage.