The rise of the “older” woman: How mature women are taking the spotlight
Whether single or not, many men have come across so-called “cougars”. Like their counterparts in the animal kingdom, these feisty females are wild and untameable, but beneath that sultry exterior beats a passionate heart that could melt given the right circumstances. These days, more and more women over a certain age are single and ready to mingle – and those lucky guys keen to attract them will have to work a bit harder: mature women are independent, experienced and they know what they want. Here’s a deeper dive into the “cougar” phenomenon, from its historical origins to the exciting culture of today.
What does “cougar” mean?
In a nutshell, a cougar is a woman who relishes the prospect of being romantically attached to a younger partner. She may well have been through lengthy partnerships that have ended, now in a position of financial and spiritual independence. As she hits middle age, she is far from approaching retirement and may well be keen to find love again and generally live life to the full! Modern societies are seeing more and more mature women dating, throwing off the dated sexist idea of being “over the hill” – and they’re often in need of a man who can keep up. There are relevant sites dedicated specifically to dating of this kind, and many are free to join – so a rewarding liaison with a woman of experience could be just around the corner.
Famous cougars from the past:
Elizabeth was queen of England and Ireland for 50 years, from the mid-to-late 16th century. The last ruler of the influential House of Tudor, she was well known as a strong female leader and was fiercely protective of her realm. Living to the age of 69 – a relatively long life span for its time – she was proud and charismatic, and absolutely opposed to the idea of marriage. Many of the younger male courtiers were drawn to her, although she was reputedly notoriously fickle about the men she was attracted to.
The enigmatic Queen of Egypt, Cleopatra, has gone down in history as surely one of the earliest examples of an emancipated older woman! Reigning for 21 years until her untimely death, aged 39 (allegedly a result of an encounter with a venomous snake), her vivacious career is still celebrated thousands of years later. Taking a variety of lovers, she was responsible for rival Roman statesmen vying for her affections. The incredible life of this woman has since been celebrated in many ways, not least in Hollywood blockbuster movies and burlesque performances.
Catherine the Great
Catherine the Great was the Empress of Russia, the country’s longest ruling (in fact only) female leader, eventually dying in 1796. At the height of her rule, the Russian Empire stretched from Western Europe to the Pacific and Alaska beyond. Catherine was known for waging war on her nation’s Baltic neighbours, and she possessed a ravenous appetite for younger lovers.
Modern celebrities who dated younger partners:
Moore rose to international success in a series of films in the 1980s, eventually achieving star status after Ghost (1990), which was that year’s highest grossing movie. But she has also generated a lot of interest in gossip columns, not least for a well-publicised romance with Ashton Kutcher, who is over a decade her junior. Moore is a classic example of a “cougar”, being stunningly attractive and established, with plenty of bucks in the bank!
This icon’s light has waned in recent years, but throughout the 1980s and 90s, Madonna was the world’s greatest pop star. She has earned revenue of over $1.5 billion for concert tickets – a record – and has been continually linked with younger suitors.
Shakira was born in Columbia and has become known as the “Queen of Latin Music”, enjoying phenomenal success across the Hispanic world and beyond. To date, she has sold more than 80 million records, making her one of the world’s top-selling pop stars. She has certainly not been shy when it comes to interacting with men, and enjoyed a relationship with Barcelona footballer Gerard Piqué – one of the elite players in his position. There is so much more to this Latina powerhouse than being a pop star: she has also completed an Ancient Philosophy degree at the University of Pennsylvania.
So, to summarise, older women are reclaiming the spotlight, looking to connect with partners of all ages – but those “cougars” in particular are in the market for younger males to match their energy. There are increasing numbers of guys tired of meeting superficial club-goers and dreaming of connecting with a more mature date. Whatever the situation, one thing is definite: there’s no limit to romantic fulfilment at any age.
The editorial unit