QUESTION: I’ve always been attracted to men who are way older than I am, and I want to know if that’s appropriate, especially considering that I’m very attracted to a certain college professor and wouldn’t mind managing to find a way to be in a relationship with him.
CHELSEA SAYS: To answer the first part of your question, it’s not at all inappropriate to be attracted to older men or to seek out relationships with them. I know a lot of women who will only date an older man, and I can’t say I blame them. Aside from just being more mature, older men are usually in a better place in their life; they’re financially stable, more secure with themselves, and know what they want in a relationship.
I find that older men are also usually more experienced and attentive than the younger ones, who are still focused on their own needs and wants.
That being said, I think there are a few things to take into consideration when it comes to pursuing an older man who also happens to be a professor. Is he one of your professors, or just one that works at your college? The only reason I’d say to tread lightly in this scenario is because it can backfire. For example, if word gets out that you’re in a relationship with your much older professor, you’re not only risking his job, but it could also cost you your education—depending on your school’s policy, you might get kicked out. You’re also going to be putting your reputation on the line, because let’s be honest, not everyone will understand that this relationship developed simply out of attraction.
Then there’s the matter of whether or not this older man is even into dating younger women, let alone a student. The last thing you want is to make a move and he not only shoots down your advances, but reports you.
If you’re really set on starting a relationship with this older man, I think you should scope it out first. Try arranging some one-on-one time with him—under the innocent guise of needing extra help, of course—which will give you an opportunity to get a feel for him and see if there’s any chemistry between the two of you. Then, if you think there’s still relationship potential there, I’d drop some hints to show him that you’re interested, but ultimately let him make the first move.
TRENT SAYS: I’m not going to lie to you. There were a couple of university professors I wanted to date. Sadly, they weren’t interested in me (totally their loss), but if they had been, I’m fairly certain my issues with impulse control would have become a reality.
When it comes right down to it, there are consequences to everything we do. Even if your college professor has full tenure, chances are really good he wouldn’t want to jeopardize his career for a relationship.
No matter how hot and bothered you are over him, it might be worth your while to at least wait until you’ve got your final grade. That way, no one will question whether or not you really deserved that A+.