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Cougar Characteristics

Cougar Characteristics

The popular label of the cougar is really a heterosexual black or white unmarried girl between the many years of 35 and 55. She keeps a youthful appearance that is physical either by workout, cosmetic makeup products, plastic surgery, or a variety of these. This woman is comparatively rich, or at the least economically separate, and she expresses her sexuality by publicly pursuing more youthful males for casual relationships or sexual encounters. She does therefore, she states, because she wishes somebody whom both appreciates and certainly will satisfy an intimately assertive and economically separate girl.

That label additionally shows that cougars are generally searching for enjoyable, short-term intimate liaisons. During the time that is same they’ve been regarded as ladies who attempt to match strict, ageist conceptions of feminine beauty, for example. Keeping a youthful appearance and slimness well into center age.


Sociologist Milaine Alarie compiled statistics on her 2018 doctorate thesis in the subject of relationships defined by older females and more youthful males. She discovered that general, and merely as with the past, females typically marry males who will be somewhat over the age of these are generally. In 2016, the U.S. Census stated that women were avove the age of their husbands by four years or maybe more in mere 7.9% of marriages, and also by a decade in just 1.7percent of marriages. In comparison, males are avove the age of their spouses by four years or higher in 31.8% of marriages, and also by a decade in 7.4per cent of marriages. Canadian data are comparable.

With regards to nonpermanent relationships, nonetheless, Alarie cites A nationwide Survey of Family Growth that found that in 2002, at the least 13percent of females into the U.S. Many years 35 to 44 had had sex one or more times with a person who had been at the least 5 years more youthful, and 5% with a guy who was a lot more than ten years more youthful. A 3rd of this ladies stated that they had had intercourse with a guy who was simply over the age of these people were by 5 years, and 14% at the least decade older.

Hence, both in marriages and relationships that are nonpermanent the trend is the fact that guys are typically over the age of their feminine counterparts. Though women are often more youthful than their partners—entering “cougar” territory—, it’s much more likely that they can be engaged having a more youthful guy in a relationship that is nonpermanent in the place of a wedding.

Social Norms and also the Cougar

Alarie proposes that negative reactions to cougar relationships are incredibly strong simply because they violate long-standing norms that are social. For instance, there is certainly an presumption in Western tradition that guys value youth and beauty in somebody, while ladies value stability that is financial. Guys may also be recognized to own more powerful intercourse drives than ladies and are also likely to make the contact that is first while women can be motivated to wait patiently passively for males to decide on them. Finally, there is the indisputable fact that older ladies are anticipated to be asexual. Cougar behavior turns most of these norms on the minds.

In Alarie’s qualitative research of 59 women that had took part in cougar relationships, results indicated that ladies had various experiences of social norms dependent on how old they are. For instance, older females had been less likely to want to be suffering from the social discourse about cougar relationships, were less preoccupied than more youthful females were on how long the relationship would endure, and were less focused on as they continued to age whether they would miss out on having children or losing their partners.

Is ‘Cougar’ a Derogatory Term?

This is for the term “cougar” seems to alter using the presenter. An outgrowth of the sexual revolution, and the availability of reliable contraceptives, which have given women more freedom when choosing a partner on the positive side, cougars are associated with gender equality. Also a reflection that is explicit sex just isn’t fundamentally linked to childbearing. Furthermore, a rise in status, training, and income ensures that a female can establish by by herself because the more party that is powerful a relationship (should an unequal power dynamic be desired by both lovers).

But, there clearly was a substantial undertone that is negative within the news, specially on web sites such as for example and Urban Dictionary, where cougars in many cases are referred to as “desperately aggressive” or “desperately clinging to youth. ” Studies reveal that ladies generally believe that such behavior is fundamentally dangerous for the males, by themselves, or both. Cougars are noticed as predators of unwary guys or victims associated with social vital to find value within their looks.

Benefits and Drawbacks

There are multiple reasons why ladies might elect to get into relationships that provide them the “cougar” label. She may be less inclined to need certainly to fundamentally support her partner (physically or emotionally) inside their last years as their health decreases, but prefer to be taken care of by by herself. Females nevertheless do real time longer than males, therefore it can be a choice that is rational decide on a more youthful partner. Females additionally state that more youthful guys appreciate their financial independency, their need for sex, and their freedom from stereotypes.

However the downsides are serious: there clearly was a stigma that is social and guys are usually forced by their buddies and household to locate somebody more youthful. In a cougar relationship, women can be not very likely to wish (more) kiddies whenever their partner does, even though lots of men state that their partner’s greater earnings is an advantage, a bit of research indicates that also can result in conflict.