I believe that, when the stars align, long-term human partnerships survive because of a number of factors:
- They get started when both partners are still physically attracted to each other, hence the passion comes naturally.
- Over time the passion fades, but the "comfy old slipper companionship" builds.
- Both partners maintain an interest in 'pleasing the other person' even if the original passionate stimulation no longer exists.
- Given years together, partners learn each others' "hot buttons" and can pleasure one another by rote, without necessarily being super turned-on (it's a loving/companionship thing!).
For the men is has absolutely nothing to do with emotional maturity. It has to do with a species that for 7,000,000,000 years of development died off at about 35 years of age. 38 was old age, and after producing 5 - 10 babies with multiple partners both within and from outside their own tribe, women of 38 no longer looked all that 'hot' compared to their 18 year old competitors.
So men in long-term relationships compromise with their wives in order to maintain the companionship, while single men are far less likely to enthusiastically embrace the notion of being passionate with women close to their own age. Our circumstances in life change, hence our expectations have to adapt to survive happily. Most women of a certain age are not willing to make that mental adjustment, and so they get very angry with men like me who can still attract younger women.
Yet I've tried very hard to be passionate over the past 5 years since divorcing my ex who is now 38 with women of 45+. Sadly things that still function like gang-busters with women under 40, don't work all that well with more mature women (save moments of inebriated 'need'... ;-). So both sides must compromise if we're to find "quality" companionship (i.e. not so much passion) post 40-45 -- or we have to search and search and search (that means a LOT of dates and a LOT of canoodling, testing out many partners for that elusive passion that can exist between certain individuals regardless of what age they are).
Can a passionate connection happen between older folks? Absolutely! First of all there are men of any age who are unusual in having a predilection for older women, but I'm not talking about that (see last post below), I'm talking about the mysterious one-on-one pheremonally-driven connection that some people share. It's rare, but it's out there for all of us.
Sadly finding that 'magically passionate' connection is made all the more rare by the fact that most of the time it exists between individuals at random, so you might be single, but the other individual is married, or gay, or decidedly unattractive to you (too old, perhaps... ;-). Over my adult life I've found that, of the women I've been attracted enough to to both pursue, AND then find mutually receptive interest (and I'm very particular and not all that attractive), it occurs in about 5%, or 1 in 20. What that means is that if finding that type of rare connection is important to you, versus compromising on "Mr. Good Enough", they you have to get it on with a LOT of partners you find attractive enough to date.
Want "Superman AND Clark Kent" in one man? (click for post) Get busy, girls!