Researchers from Abo Akademi University in Finland quizzed 2,655 men and women aged 18 to 50 on their age limits of considered and actual sex partners.
Study author Dr Jan Antfolk said: ‘It is true that men, more than women, tend to maintain a sexual interest in younger partners.‘Contrary to what has been reported from earlier studies, most men and women are also sexually interested in partners their own age throughout life.
Dr Antfolk added: ‘Whereas women of all ages prefer slightly older sexual partners, men, regardless of their age, have a preference for women in their twenties.‘Over the investigated age span, women reported a narrower age range than men and women tended to prefer slightly older men.‘We also show that men’s age range widens as they get older: While they continue to consider sex with young women, men also consider sex with women their own age or older.‘Contrary to earlier suggestions, men’s sexual activity thus reflects also their own age range, although their potential interest in younger women is not likely converted into sexual activity.’In the 1967 film, the Graduate, Mrs Robinson, who seduces a younger man played by Dustin Hoffman tells him ‘I am twice your age’ – suggesting she was in her mid 40s.
Samantha, played by Kim Cattrell in Sex and the City, who has a string of younger sexual partners, celebrates her 50th birthday in Sex and the City: The Movie.
Older men, perhaps predictably, express ‘a preference’ for women in their twenties.
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