Help pack a million meals for struggling seniors on 9-11. Volunteer today

Happy African American couple



Rewards for Good: Test Your Retirement Smarts






AARP Games - Play Now!

Most Popular



A 'Cougar' State of Mind

Confident, sexy women enjoy dating younger men

Least you think these sentiments are just jealous sour grapes, I assure you, many older women wouldn't want to be cougars if they could be. They don't like the pressure. It takes work to be a cougar (exercising, getting chic hair cuts, sexy clothes, shoes, and the like), and many middle-aged and older women feel they have earned the right not to do that work. Being a cougar feels too much like the ratings games in earlier life periods. They weren't fun then, and all that work certainly seems an improper expectation now.

Who's right? Well first for a dose of reality: True cougars are not all that common. Most 60-year-old women don't look like Susan Sarandon or other fabulously built female movie stars, and as a result, have fewer young men vying for their attention. Less than 15 percent of women marry a man 10 years or younger than themselves. More cougars are with aging lions rather than young bucks.

Still, I love the idea of super-sexual seniors. Even if the reality isn't as common as the fantasy, I waited a long time to see a woman as old as 60 or 70 as the appropriate romantic interest in a film. I loved it when Diane Keaton could be nude in a romantic comedy and bed both Jack Nicolson and Keanu Reeves—and be the one to decide who was right for her. Better yet, I get excited to see the emergence of women outside Hollywood with the cougar mindset.

Cougar minds, by the way, can exist without cougar bodies. Cougar minds can come in any exterior package, but they always are able to exude and generate sensuality. When a cougar is on her own, she is still a cougar even though she is not connecting with someone. You can see it in her eyes, her walk, her smile.  Cougars own their sexuality even if it is not shared at the moment.

The bottom line for me: The evolution of the cougar concept is good for every woman and her partner. It keeps sexual possibilities and eroticism alive. And that continued capacity for passion creates lifelong desirability to younger men, older men, or anyone who can recognize a vital spirit when meeting one.

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.


Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Member Benefits HomeServe

Members can protect their homes with comprehensive repair plans from HomeServe.

grocery coupon center member benefit aarp

Members can print savings coupons at the Grocery Coupon Center powered by

Membership Discount Benefit Pet Plan Dog

Members save 10% on Petplan pet insurance premiums when purchasing a policy online.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.