Relative Sex Rank vs True Sex Rank

I got asked a question recently that started along the lines of, “If a forty-year-old woman is a 9 and…”

…and let me stop you right there. There are no forty-year-old-women that are Sex Rank 9. Not a one. Nope not even her, or her, or whoever you think of. Just stop trying.

Now I will agree that that relative to other forty-year-old women, there are some women that are clearly vastly more attractive than other forty-year-old women. They look really good for forty. Heck I even know a lady in her early fifties that can still wear a bikini and look good in it. But it’s that they look great for forty. She looks amazing for fifty. It’s all relative Sex Rank and not true Sex Rank.

Confusning the difference between relative Sex Rank and true Sex Rank is something women love to do, because it’s clearly in their interest to do so. But it’s a little like confusing a gold medal from the Special Olympics with one from the actual Olympics. It’s not a level playing field we’re talking about. Yes indeed you may be amazing for a 44-year-old mom, but lets be honest, your 19-year-old daughter just buries you with her hotness. No objective observer is going to be confused over which is hotter.

Deep down of course, everyone knows the truth, younger women are hotter than older women. This is why Demi Moore looked utterly amazing for her age and she still got taken to the curb. Seriously, why was anyone surprised by this? Oh Ashton Kutcher you bad bad bad bad attractive man you.

Look don’t get me wrong, being a MILF is great. It’s vastly better than being an unfuckable, over tanned, wrinkled, used up whore who looks and acts like she’s auditioning for the role of cockblock lady at the DMV. You can have a really good time with a MILF. The’re fun and good in bed and all kinds of good stuff. Jennifer’s a MILF. She’s good in bed and worth talking to before and after sex. She does stuff… you know, like a grown up.

So lets talk about true Sex Rank, which is the only kind that really matters when push comes to shove.

Women in that 20-24 range are just amazingly hot. This is the hottest a women is going to be her whole life. Unsurprisingly, this is when she is most fertile, most likely to cheat and most likely to get a divorce. As she ages further, even if she keeps up a good beauty regime her looks will slowly ebb away. Women can add a ton of Beta skills to compensate and maintain overall relationship value, but this is still just a compensation.

For men, much of their personal attractiveness stems from their power, and young men aren’t powerful save the physical aspect. So a tiny handful of young men get to ride on the sexual wave of physical power, but most young men remain sexually frustrated to at least some degree. However as men age they gain more and more real world power and they probably peak in the 25-29 age range of the composite between raw physical ability, actual power and potential future power. If a man keeps it all together as he ages, and continues to build his powerbase, he can maintain his high Sex Rank even into his fifties commonly.

This is why a forty-year-old man divorcing has a reasonable hope of finding a new woman in the 25-40 age range and a forty-year-old woman divorcing is going to have a reasonable hope of finding a new man in the 40-55 age range. Sex Rank is cruel to young men and older women.

So what does this mean for a man running the MAP on a wife that is holding out on sex?

Very simply put, it’s enormously powerful to have your wife become aware of the fact that a younger woman expressed sexual interest in you. That cuts right through the nonsense of a fantasy Sex Rank and puts the actual Sex Ranks into play in her head. If your wife is walking around thinking that she is still a 9 because she was a 9 twenty years ago, nothing kicks that thought to the curb faster and harder than having a woman 10-20 years younger than her, express interest in you.

Look I know it’s a dark tactic to use, but it works. You can’t fake it otherwise she’ll know and despise you for it, but if it’s real, it works. You don’t need to rub her nose in it, just have her become aware of it and let her hamster do the work for you. She can’t suddenly turn 22 again… but she can turn into a MILF. Which is after all, what 99% of the husbands reading MMSL actually want.




  1. jj says

    I disagree with you. Diane Lane was definitely able to compete with younger women at age 40. Catherine Zeta Jones is like 50 years old and she is definitely at least an 8. There are a rare few, but mostly they are exceptions.

  2. says



    That was the sound of the can of worms opened by this post. Good thing you left your full-time job Athol, ’cause you’re gonna have to babysit the comments section of this one. Not that I don’t agree with you 100% about younger women being sexier than older ones, and that seeing a young ‘un flirting with hubby can really get a older wife’s hamster going furiously, I do agree.

    It’s just that posting the very concept is going to get hamsters running furiously…

  3. pdwalker says

    No MacNut,

    I don’t think it will. There is nothing controversial in what Athol said. It’s cold, hard, truth.

  4. Liz says

    This is true. Realistically, I’m about a 5 or a 6. But I’m young enough to be pretty much at my physical peak, and I do see older men checking me out, much to the annoyance of the older women in the room. It’s a definite incentive to stay married (I married really, really young) when you see what the market is really like even for “amazing for their age” thirty somethings.

    The issue with men is that so many of them *don’t* do what you say, and therefore don’t stay fuckable into their fifties. The really galling bit is that they think they’re so sexy, and won’t stay in their league – in fact they find their equivalents disgusting.

  5. says

    I fondly remember my young wife being checked out by Italian gentlemen in a shop in Sydney once. I was a bit surprised, but I suppose she looked pretty good in her mid-twenties. The thing is, you don’t appreciate what you have got at that age. I was 30 when I married her at 25; optimal I think.

  6. NG says

    Not really controversial, just reality. I’ve always been amused how in the Western world some of these older women really think older women-younger men equates to the same dynamics as older men-younger women. Depending on the age and life-stage of the woman, I personally feel anything younger than 5 (7 max) years is asking for trouble if a woman is interested in a serious relationship.

    Now if a woman is not interest in a serious relationship and just wants something short-term, then as long as the guy is legal, it doesn’t matter.

  7. John Q Galt says

    “This is why a forty-year-old man divorcing has a reasonable hope of finding a new woman in the 25-40 age range and a forty-year-old woman divorcing is going to have a reasonable hope of finding a new man in the 40-55 age range. Sex Rank is cruel to young men and older women.”

    The most encouraging thing I’ve heard all month.

    40 year old man. 6’1″, 230#, still have most of my hair. MBA and a senior finance guy, income well into 6 figures.

    Currently separated from my wife of 16 years. She is a little pudgy but is blonde with Big Ones. I am a recovering one-itis sufferer. Before you ask, no I didn’t display any bad behavior, just normal middle class betaness.

    I am pretty sure I could do better next go-round, but the kids and the shared history gives me pause. I am running the MAP but I don’t know if it’s for her, for me, or for my next girlfriend. Seriously…to plug for Athol – do the MAP regardless – it will make you feel like a man again. I smile more now and sleep more soundly than at any time in the past year. I don’t care if I never get laid again (OK, actually I do…) but it makes your life better.

    I wish she could look into the abyss before we actually GET a divorce.

  8. John Q Galt says

    As far as that goes….I question if I even WANT her back. I wonder how I evaluate the tradoff between:

    A woman I’ve known as a friend for 20+ years and dated/married for 18 years; the mother of my children; a woman who married me when I didn’t have a pot to piss in; 18 years of memories;


    A (potential) woman of higher sex rank; who will appreciate (assuming she has been divorced) a good man; who does not have the bad memories but may have some other dude’s children; who has already been through a divorce;

    Athol, maybe a blog post for those of us in middle age on how to evaluate a second wife. If you’re 40 and you don’t do stupid things habitually, you can reasonably expect another 40 years of life. But everyone you meet at 40 either has been divorced or they are so screwed up no one wanted them the first go-round.

  9. Phinn says

    “I am running the MAP but I don’t know if it’s for her, for me, or for my next girlfriend.”

    They are one and the same. There’s no such thing as doing it for her. There is only you.

    Get yourself down to around 190 lbs, and you’ll have women lined up around the block.

    And alpha the fuck up, man! You sound like a great guy, just one who has been told all his life to put the needs and preferences of others ahead of his own.

    It’s YOUR life.

  10. Over It says

    Hang on…so what’s the point of running the MAP for a woman who’s not 20-25? All it takes is for her husband to run his own MAP, and then she’s back to being the unattractive one in the relationship?

    If having power is an alpha characteristic for men, remind me what the alpha traits for women are again?

  11. Over It says

    @John Q Galt

    I’d say that you’ve gotta cut the sentimentality out of it. I’m not in my 40s, but have a similar “so many memories, etc” situation. Sometimes I think I’ll stay with him for that reason, except cold hard fact is that the relationship is lousy, I’m unfulfilled, and it’s not working.

  12. says


    I don’t think this can be stressed too much in your thinking about inter-gender relations. Athol’s dead right about this . . . and about his MILFy conclusion.

    That’s part of marriage that many young men don’t understand. How can you stay with a woman long-term if her actual rank is destined to depreciate over time while yours is inclined to appreciate? If women are fungible, then isn’t serial monogamy with a steadily increasing age difference between you and your new wife a better deal for dudes?

    It’s a trade-off — and in my opinion, with proper bride selection, it’s a trade-off that ultimately rewards a man (the right kind of man) for him making the investment in marriage. Because while the pay-off isn’t yet-another hot 25 year old in your bed every couple of years, it can be in the form of a 40 year old who can remind you of her 25 year old self while maintaining the erotic self-confidence and sexual experience only a lifetime of intimacy can produce. The MILF, in other words.

    I don’t think people understand how important, culturally speaking, the idea of the MILF is to us. It’s the first time a generally positive term for a sexually-active woman of any age has been used in our language. Before, the only socially-acceptable term was “wife”, and that came loaded with a lot of agricultural-age baggage that really doesn’t apply to a post-industrial marriage. In other words, while “wife” implied a sexual component, it was but a part of a far wider-ranging role.

    MILF on the other hand is purely sexual, and almost always used in a positive way. Calling a woman a MILF is a compliment, not a curse. “Cougar” has some predatory connotations implied, but MILF is almost wholesome, yet undeniably sexual. For those who believe that men are universally hung up on 24 year old big-boobed blondes, it might surprise you to find out that MILF porn accounts for a disproportionately large percentage of over-all porn sales. There are plenty of solid psychological reasons for this, but among the most obvious is the fact that older women — MILFs — enjoy a far deeper sexual confidence than a woman fifteen or twenty years younger. The veneer of innocence a young woman projects is gone, replaced with a thick layer of I-have-a-vagina-and-I-know-how-to-use-it confidence that is inherently arousing to men.

    Don’t believe me? Consider that among the most important elements to a man who is watching porn isn’t the relative beauty of the female performers — it’s how convincingly they can portray their pure enjoyment of the act. Younger women are often preoccupied by how they look and how they are being perceived, what the experience means and what the social fallout from her liaison will be when they have sex with a man. Older women, especially older, married women, have often transcended that preoccupation, especially if they have been intimate with the same partner for years and years.

    A lot of guys wonder how I can stare at drop-dead gorgeous women having outrageous sex all day and still go home to a wife who isn’t just as beautiful. The fact is, my exposure to so many beautiful (and not-so-beautiful) women has actually convinced me more than anything else that a deep knowledge of one woman is far more erotically fulfilling — to me at least — than the shallow acquaintance with a multitude of female bodies. For one thing, beauty is no guarantee of erotic talent (and yes, some people are more talented at sex than others, just as some are better athletes or better musicians). But no matter how much native talent a young woman has, sex is also a skill that must be learned over time to be mastered. The “trade-off” for youth and beauty is experience, skill, and self-confidence that leads to greater passion and higher-quality sex (in aggregate — all the bad married sex even great couples have is part of the process).

    I frequently tell Mrs. Ironwood (and hell, pretty much anyone who cares) that she is my favorite MILF, and I can say that with utter sincerity. Even if I dropped her tomorrow for a skinny 25 year old nymphomaniac, it would take another 20 years to tune my new wife to the same level as Mrs. Ironwood is now, and I know that. It takes that long to develop the kind of familiarity, intimacy and confidence in a relationship to get to the really good stuff. To keep it in Manosphere terms, Mrs. Ironwood’s Relative Sex Rank to me is far higher than her True (or Objective) Sex Rank based on that long familiarity complimented by a willingness to experiment that keeps our intimate life from becoming routine or boring. That’s why she’s my favorite MILF, and always will be. She’s a sexually-active wife in a functioning heterosexual dyad, and that should be celebrated in a positive manner. Besides, it’s a lot easier than culturally-reclaiming the term “slut”.

    So that’s this week’s lesson from Uncle Ian’s Porn Corner . . .

  13. says

    @John Q Galt

    Think of it this way, dude: you ARE doing it for your next girlfriend . . . even if that next girlfriend is your old wife. If you run the MAP with the expectation that you’ll get a hot, sexier girlfriend as a result — and then refuses to back down on that expectation — then either you will find that new girlfriend or your old wife will have to re-invent herself to become that hot new girlfriend. But either way, don’t back down from that expectation purely for the sentimentality you might have for your old relationship. One way or the other, things have irrevocably changed. Either she can be part of that change, or a bittersweet memory, but the essential thing to keep in mind is that you’ve changed. Keep freebasing the alpha until it oozes from every pore, and the rest will fall into place.

  14. John Q Galt says

    Thanks Ian. I think your earlier comment nailed it – why a person might want to stay with an aging wife.

  15. Magster says

    There is absolutely nothing controversial about what Athol said — the controversy is that he said it. It will be interesting to see the response from other female readers.

    As for me, a married woman approaching 40, this post touched a sore spot. When I was in my early 20s, I was a superhot 9. I am now in what P.J. O’Rourke described as the “Hell of the formerly cute.” Married my husband and over the years let myself go. He’s told me he wants me to get back in shape, and I am complying. I’m currently working my tush off (literally) to get back into the best shape possible, and was pretty excited about how my appearance is improving — but hearing the truth about my age this starkly is demotivating. It makes me wonder what the point is, when even at my best at 40 or 50 I’ll be totally eclipsed by even average 20-somethings.

    I won’t wail and gnash my teeth over whether or not Athol’s point is valid. It’s true and there’s just no denying it. What I will say, from a feminine POV, is that being reminded of it taps into the dark recesses of my mind where I think, in spite of maximizing my attractiveness, performing a daily exorcism of all bitchiness, and actually enjoying frequent sex with my husband, he’s looking at superhot 20-somethings and thinking “why in the hell am I stuck with this old hag?”

    I really don’t know how to put Athol’s post into perspective, since I don’t know to what degree other factors motivate my husband to stay with me and how these factors compete against the allure of a young, attractive woman. What I do know is that I suddenly feel a lot less sexy.

  16. Changed Man says

    I hear a lot of talk about guys in their 40’s and their chances in finding a new mate if the MAP is run to ‘the end’. What about guys in their 50’s in similar circumstances? I used to be 270 lbs, now 185, running 20 miles per week, lifting, smaller pant size than in my 20’s, and have ALL my hair. If my MAP doesn’t end well, am I pretty much done and should just be put out to pasture?

  17. FlyingDutchman says

    @to add to Ian’s comment

    Think of it this way too. Your aging wife isn’t truly happy until she is with a Man like you are MAPPING into. Deep down she wants to be a MILF and you might just give her that chance. My aging wife is turning into just that via my running the MAP and she is so much happier for it. The difficulty is you do have to be willing to leave to get there. Just “willing to leave”. You don’t really want to leaver her ultimately, but you have to be willing to look beyond your wife to become the Alpha that she craves. This is one of the irony’s of taking the red pill. Great post Athol!

  18. says


    Read my comment about MILFs. THAT’s why you shouldn’t be discouraged. You might not be a 9 anymore, objectively, but factor in the experience and confidence you’ve gained as you’ve lost objective capital, and that can significantly raise your SUBjective score vis a vis your man.

    In other words, a young husband brags about how pretty his wife is. An OMG brags about how his wife will still do him in the parking lot.

    The plain fact of the matter is, beauty isn’t just in the eye of the beholder, in women it is also augmented by the positive attention they receive, knowing that they are being beheld. That is, a 40 year old 7 who knows her husband thinks she’s hot is going to naturally act more sexually self-confident — “hotter” — than her objective criteria are going to suggest. A single 40 year old 7 is at the mercy of the attention she receives in the SMP to validate her beauty, and that can be a brutal endeavor. As a result, she isn’t going to be as confident or secure in her sexuality, and that’s going to depress her SMV.

    So as disheartening as Athol’s summation may sound to you, the fact that you have a dude who is “stuck with this old hag” and doesn’t seem to mind should raise your spirits. Yes, he’s still going to be aroused by the sight and presence of nubile females . . . if he didn’t, he wouldn’t have hit on you in the first place, now would he? But the fact that he’s encouraging you to re-invest in the erotic relationship instead of wandering after the first unoccupied vagina should bring you a tremendous amount of security. Dudes who go that route don’t often encourage their wives to stay in shape simply so they can rationalize their infidelities away. If he still wants you at slightly-before-40, then odds are he’s already hooked on your Subjective Sex Rank and is invested for the long term.

    So next time you see his head turned by a perky rack, do him in the parking lot. He’ll forget all about them.

  19. GetItDone says

    @Changed Man:

    I’m a 30 year old, in-shape, attractive divorced woman getting into a relationship with a 50-year old divorced man who ran his MAP. We’re like a couple of teenagers. Really and truly and honestly I’m a little skeptical about a LTR with somebody 20 years my senior. But we’re having a world of fun right now and will see where it goes. Be encouraged my friend.

  20. R. says

    Ian, PLEASE dive deeper in this MILF and sex intimacy stuff and post it in your blog. I need it to show to my fianceé! :D

  21. John Q Galt says


    If he wanted to be poking a 20 year old, he’d be poking a 20 year old. Maybe not a SUPERMODEL 20 year old, but one nonetheless. If he has been with you for a certain length of time, he evidently prefers something you’re giving him to novelty.

    I’ll give you my thoughts as a 40-year old separated man who is looking at divorce, Pro (staying) and con (stupid stuff which injures your marriage).


    –She married you when you were young, awkward, unproven and broke. She “Deserves” the fruits.
    –If you have kids, you don’t want to lose daily contact with them…plus it’s scientifically proven that children from broken homes do less well than children from good homes. Even the ones who look OK have commitment/security issues. Never underestimate paternal love as a motivator
    –Standing in the community
    –Divorce is expensive; splitting up a home and 20 years of accumulated crap is demoralizing
    –You know his body better than anyone, so the sex, if you’re even trying, is the best he’s liable to get. Hot 20 somethings are notorious “starfish”.
    –Sentimental attachment to shared memories
    –Similar values…assuming you made it for 10+ years..towards money, childrearing, religion, politics, whatever.
    –He probably likes a few quirky, uniquely you characteristics. Maybe it’s the way you crinkle your nose when you are about to laugh. Maybe the way you sing along to the radio. Pet names. The mole on your thigh. the way sometimes you snort when you laugh. Whatever. You have a few, and he likes them.
    –Familiarity. Men are creatures of habit. We will put up with a suboptimal situation a lot longer than we, objectively, should.
    –Familiarity #2. Everyone wants someone to watch your back. If he made it to the airport without his passport, can he reasonably expect you’ll show up with it, hair in curlers?

    Cons (or, don’t do stupid stuff).

    –Don’t cheat. Don’t even give the APPEARANCE of cheating. Ditch the ex boyfriends on facebook. Call and check in. make sure he knows he can trust you.
    –Don’t expect him to make you haaaappy. Scientific research has shown that most people have a certain bedrock level of happiness. This is why there are so many lotto winner suicides, and people who have had something horrible happen – like paraplegia – return to a certain happiness level. Personally, I separated just over a week ago, and I’m WAY happier now.
    –Don’t turn into a blimp. Wear heels. Wear makeup. Shave your pits, legs, and “down there.” Note, I didn’t say “look like a hot 20 year old.” He knows you’re going to age. Some women age well, others poorly. He is aging also and has less hair in some places and more in others.
    –Don’t freeload. Pull your weight. Even if your job is secondary to his, you’ll be contributing – maybe paying for a trip to Europe, or a really nice car for him. If you’re a SAHM, clean the house and cook. And hit the gym.
    –Don’t EVER bash him in public. Ever. Ever. This is Management 101 – praise in public, reprimand in private. Praise him to the skies! Get on facebook and brag about how wonderful hubby fixed the ____ or thoughtfully bought you your favorite ___ when he noticed you were running out or you can’t WAIT to have a date to do ___ or he got a promotion at work/church/bowling league/whatever. Guys crave praise. Use the term “Wonderful Hubby” a lot. A side benefit is that all the other women will hate you because you have something wonderful that they don’t. Another side benefit is that you’ll like him more yourself if you’re forcing yourself to notice nice things about him.
    –Don’t crush his soul. Get him out of the house – whatever his thing is. Golf, sailing, skiing, whatever. He busts his ass 5+ days a week for you. Tell him you believe in his dreams.
    –Avoid divorced women like the plague. They will try to convince you that your decent hubby is a piece of crap and that men will be crawling all over themselves to buy you things – just like when you were 20. They are trying to validate their own (foolish) choices.

  22. Jane says

    damn it, sometimes ignorance is bliss…..I’m headed for the big 3-0 this year and married a guy 4 years younger than me…SO DEPRESSING!!! It’s all downhill from here…

  23. John Q Galt says

    In summary – if you’re doing most of the good things and none of the stupid things, you PROBABLY don’t have anything to worry about. I mean you can worry about it like you worry about cancer or house fires, but don’t obsess.

    With some men, you can probably get away with doing some of the stupid things some of the time. Just like you can probably get away with driving home after 6 glasses of wine. never know when the cop is going to be behind the billboard ready to pull you over.

  24. John Q Galt says

    A starfish is a woman who just lays there with her legs and arms open and just doesn’t do anything. She may let you do anal and blast all over her face…but is she’s just starfishing, she’s less hot than a woman who just does vaginal and oral…but REALLY puts effort into it.

  25. John Q Galt says

    Edited to add…why do you think porn movies always feature theatrically over-the-top female orgasms?

  26. AnonJohn says

    “Personally, I separated just over a week ago, and I’m WAY happier now.”

    While your perspective is worth of contribution, I suspect that it will change dramatically over the coming few years.

    For better or worse.

  27. says

    Some Thoughts:

    @MacNut re: “can of worms”

    I really don’t think anyone can disagree with this. The most hardcore feminist I’ve ever met (and I’ve met some pretty hardcore feminists) wouldn’t disagree that men tend to be more attracted to younger women vs. older ones. They may disagree about the cause and call it a societal construct rather than a biological imperative. They may rage and rail against the terrible, culturally-imposed double standard that older men are considered attractive and older women aren’t. But I’ve never met one who would disagree with the basic fact of the matter.

    @OP: “So lets talk about true Sex Rank, which is the only kind that really matters when push comes to shove.”

    For the purposes of this post, that’s probably true, but speaking generally, I disagree. I think that Effective Sex Rank (Sex Rank as determined by how attractive you are to the person you are pursuing) is at least as important as “true” (Objective) Sex Rank.

    For example, my lady likes men with beards. When I wear a properly-trimmed beard, I gain almost a full point of Effective Sex Rank with her vs. when I’m clean-shaven. A beard suits me, so I gain maybe a quarter to half a point with women in general, and with a woman who doesn’t like beards, it might lose me half a point. But even assuming that a beard DIDN’T really suit me and wasn’t attractive to women in general, it might still be worth taking the pre-selection hit if she liked beards so much that it boosted my Effective Sex Rank with her.

    Again, none of this really does much to discount the issue of Relative Sex Rank vs. people of the same age. Just food for thought.

    @Ian: Agreed on all points. Fantastic post.

    @Over It, @Magster, re: “then what’s the point of trying?”

    You try to stay attractive even though you’ll never compete on an equal footing with a 25-year-old for the same reason a man who makes $25,000 a year should bust his ass for the promotion that would bring that up to $30,000 even though he knows that he’ll never be able to compete with a guy who makes six figures.

    You’ll never be the best at everything. But if the rest of your game is up to snuff, you can at least shore up your weak spots to the point where they’re not bringing down the total package that you offer.

    Or, like Ian said, if you can’t be a 20-something SR9 hottie, be an SR7 MILF. Guys like MILFs. I like looking at the fresh-out-of-college intern at the office as much as the next guy, but that doesn’t mean I don’t also wonder what the confident, in-shape forty-something in the next office over is like in the sack either. Be the best version of you that you can be.

  28. says

    @ Changed Man

    What about guys in their 50?s in similar circumstances? […] If my MAP doesn’t end well, am I pretty much done and should just be put out to pasture?

    Not at all! Some of us actually prefer older men, and an older man in good shape and has some decent game is probably well positioned to find a woman 10-15 years younger.

  29. GC says

    @Magster – Do not be discouraged. Keep working to be the best woman, hottest woman you can be. I am older than you and I don’t waste any time thinking about 20-something women – I just work on being the best, hottest wife I can be for my husband. And he works hard to be a really great husband to me. Remember that confidence is very attractive. The things that Ian said about an experienced, sexually confident wife are true. Which is one reason why I think that absolute sex rank isn’t very relevant when you are talking about married couples who are trying to have wonderful, fulfilling lives together. I think that most husbands would choose to be with their wife of 10, 20 or 30 years who wants to have a pleasant, enjoyable, sexually-fulfilling life with him, rather than a hot 24-year-old from the office. Not that they don’t ever think about the hot 24-year-old (!), but the balance of positives favors the wife – assuming she is doing her part to keep things fun, enjoyable and sexy.

  30. Magster says


    Thanks for your response. I’m not worried that my husband is about to commit adultery. He is a man of honor, and I doubt he would cheat. If he was thinking about leaving me, he’d warn me well ahead of time. In fact, I think I got the warning already, and I’m definitely taking it seriously.

    Here’s the thing. I’m all about improvement, and based on what I’ve read at MMSL and in Dr Laura’s books, I know what’s in my power to be the best possible wife. So, I’ve changed my attitude and take good care of my man — and, sexually, things are better than ever. In fact, the single most helpful piece of marriage advice I’ve come across came from this blog. Athol wrote that the sexiest move a wife can make is to show her husband how much she’s into sex with him. That advice inspired me to amp up my enthusiasm by an order of magnitude, and now sex with my husband is so much fun that I’m pretty much perpetually “in the mood.” It’s really exciting knowing what I can do to improve as a wife and then seeing it work.

    On the flip side, it was very disheartening to read that all of this effort is just “compensation” for the fact that I’m an old broad. I guess on some level I knew that was true, but I’d never consciously thought of it that way — and, man, is it depressing. The idea of my husband cheating doesn’t bother me, because I know he won’t as long as I hold up my end of the deal. What does bother me — a LOT — is the thought that he’s longing for someone much younger and more attractive than I am and staying with me only because I’m able to add just enough inertia to the marriage that he figures, “Meh, guess I’ll stay with the old broad.” Maybe the haze of estrogen-induced despair clouding my mind at present is causing me to misinterpret this — I sure hope I’m misinterpreting it.

    Anyway, your comments make me feel less hopeless about the situation, so I thank you for that.

  31. Magster says

    Actually, that should have said “I’m not worried about my husband LEAVING.” Not cheating.

  32. mgwk says

    Thanks for those comments, Ian Ironwood (I’d reached my mid-fifties before hearing of the MAP). Fellow oldsters reading this (M & F), don’t get discouraged. Athol & Ian are reminding us that the glass is two-thirds full. Special snowflakes can believe that the world owes them more, but wisdom should have taught us otherwise by this point. There’s a helluva lot of material for us to work with.

  33. Magster says

    John Q,

    I’m sorry to hear that your marriage is suffering. But those were very helpful remarks. I especially appreciated the “starfish” comment — when I was a superhot 20-something, that was all I was capable of. The nice thing about getting to this age and having been with my husband so long is that all of my inhibitions are gone. I feel safe with him, and confident, and now that I’m well past my uber-selfish 20s, I’m discovering that the best part of sex is pleasuring him to the max.

    The pro/con list was excellent. Cloud of despair dissipating …

  34. Peter North says

    I don’t know Athol… Sofia Vergara is 40, and she is hotter than the surface of the sun. She’s a “true” 10, and a “relative” infinity, IMHO.

  35. says

    @Peter North: Two words. Photo. Shop. Never believe anything you see in a magazine.

    @Magster: “Athol wrote that the sexiest move a wife can make is to show her husband how much she’s into sex with him. ”

    Here to tell you that this is 100% true. All guys might like looking at younger women, but the enlightened man knows that the reality of being with them ain’t always what it’s cracked up to be. No man wants to be with a woman who treats allowing him to do his thing on top of her with little to no help as this great favor she can bestow or withhold at her whim, and that’s exactly the attitude that many younger women have. Even the ones whose hearts are in the right place often don’t know Thing 1 about what to do.

    If the things you do to be attractive for your husband can be described as “compensating” for growing older, well, a younger woman’s looks can just as easily be described as “compensating” for her other failings. Nobody’s perfect.

  36. horseman says

    Best blog ever!! and usual fantastic commemtary by Ian et al.
    This should be required reading for all new couples at the alter. Would avoid entitlement princess amd oneitis betas.
    Also with 70% of divorces initiated by women would smarten them up about real chances.
    even the best settlement is 70% max of married combined assets income plus you will be forever getting lower not higher in the meet market.
    So leaving boring Harry is better long term how? Throw the primer at both of you and make it work.

  37. Flipper says

    I gave my wife a little crap about turning 35. As I run my MAP, I figure negging her just a little might be productive as she seems to be rather oblivous to some of the things I’ve worked hard on. I didn’t do it in a snarky way, but the last night she was 34 I tried to screw her and failed. Then the next day I said I thought I was going to score for sure. Then I said “You realize that might have been my last chance on Earth to screw a woman in her early thirties right? Got laid on her birthday so maybe it worked…lol.

  38. Flipper says

    The encouraging thing is that a woman can improve her sex rank by 2 points or so by just screwing the ever loving shit out of her husband, doing dirtier things in bed, using advanced techniques, etc. In short by being the best sex he can have. That’s the trump card ladies, but you have to use it. Often.

  39. Z says

    While I’m happy for everything I’m reading about how men love their own MILFs, I wonder if there’s any hope for me. I’m decent looking for my age (mid 50s, so my 5-6 is not bad, compared to most late middle aged women’s 0-4), but I’m divorcing a piece of batshit and wondering if I’ll ever be someone’s MILF. Or even an OLILF (old lady).

    Working my own version of a MAP while I think.

  40. Shanna says

    I read this post and felt a lot like Mags.
    No one likes being told they’ve peaked!
    But it is what it is.
    @Ian and John Q – thanks. Great explanations.
    I could have written your post. I have read Dr. Laura and Athol’s book and several others and am trying to be the best wife ever. I’m also working out and paying extra attention to my appearance.
    My husband tells me I’m the best wife and I look just like I did when I was 18.
    Of course I don’t.
    But maybe – just maybe – if you do all these things to improve yourself, act enthusiastically in bed, respect and submit to them, they’ll look at you through goggles that make them see you as the formerly hot 9 you were in your 20’s. Kind of like beer goggles. :)

    OH and thanks for bringing up MILFs, guys. Hubby calls me this and I thought it was probably nice, but wasn’t really sure!

  41. Highlander says

    It’s obvious this fact has no hit the dating sites ;~) I read some of these ladies profiles who are in their 40’s and it’s like they are expecting landing some guy who looks like a fitness model who is also a brain surgeon/corporate raider. They’re 48 , 5′ -4″ and they have the age range set from “42-49″, and height at 5′-11- 6″2″. Considering the average male in the USA is only 5′ 9″ the pickings are going to be slim for them for sure.

    It’s funny in a way, I could pass for Hugh Jackman’s older brother @ 6′ 2″ , 180lbs, abs and all that. I even had my profile checked out by female friends to make sure it was a great one and used a professional photographer to take my shots. I’ve had lots of lookers check out my profile, but seldom even get a contact. So whatever they are looking for is rare animal ;~)

  42. rycamor says

    To the handwringing girls:

    Paleo diet + exercise has been mentioned before around here. I’m not saying it’s the solution to everything, but it can make a remarkable difference. Just check out this 73-year-old guy and his 72-year-old wife: — yeah that’s a soft filter on her, but still anyone can tell that’s a better 72 than most women are a 50.

    There is no reason to just give up. Ever.

  43. says

    Z, some men, like me, don’t mind a bit of age on a woman. There are a lot of MILFs, and I have my own. I am nearly 57 and my wife is 51. I still enjoy fucking her.

  44. says

    Today, it’s nearly impossible to train a MILF.

    #1 There’s too much temptation like pizza and pie.
    #2 If they do attain hot MILFdom, they often stray to whenever a twink beguiles them.

    ’tis the lucky man
    who is satisfied
    with his own.

  45. Linanati says

    I’ve seen the term MILF before, but what exactly does it mean?

    It means Mother I’d Like to Fuck. This is a compliment not an insult. :-)

    My husband thinks I’m still supermodel hot. In my opinion, I never was quite as hot as he thought I was, but I’m certainly not now at 33 and after having 2 children. I try to keep myself up though and dress a little flirty and girly, but NOT trying to look a 20 year old. I have a great BMI and hips-to-waist ratio, better than a lot of younger women, which works in my favor. I also do everything he’s ever wanted me to do in bed, and I do it enthusiastically, while making the appropriate noises.

    Here are the secrets to keeping your husband as you age, provided he is a decent guy, not a selfish jerk:

    1. Don’t let yourself go. With all the whales-on-legs you see in every public place, you will look much better by comparison if you just don’t get fat. You get even more of a boost if you exercise and try to keep your body toned.

    2. Give your husband sex – often, and with the amount of variety he likes. When his friends are complaining about their wives or girlfriends not giving them any, he’ll think how lucky he is to have a willing sex bunny at home.

    3. Be a good wife. Be loving, affectionate, and appreciative of what he does to provide for the family. Keep up your end of the work, unless you have a good reason why you can’t, such as illness.

    4. Be a good mother, if you have children. Be loving, warm, and maternal with them, but also firm when discipline is needed, so he realizes what a good decision he made when he picked you to be the mother of his children.

    5. Apologize when you are wrong. This sort of sane behavior will contrast nicely with the bipolar nightmare his best friend from college married. Confession: I actually have something now that I need to apologize to my husband for when he gets home.

    6. Compliment him on a regular basis. It makes him feel like you still admire him. This is the one I am most trying to improve right now. It doesn’t come naturally to me, but it’s still important.

    All this is not to say that you should ignore real problems though just because you don’t look as good as you used to. If your husband is an alcoholic, you may actually be able to get a higher-value man, even though your Sex Rank is lower than it used to be. Women shouldn’t have a sense of desperation about holding on to the men they have at all costs.

    You put in this kind of effort to hold on to him if he’s a good man. If he’s a total loser, you might still be able to do better. My husband’s aunt divorced her alcoholic/drug addict husband when she was in her 40’s. She’s now married to a very nice college professor. She was pretty when she was younger and has kept herself up well. She looks good for her age.

  46. Rachael says

    Noises of pleasure and enthusiasm, I would assume. To some it comes naturally, others may need to make a conscious effort to be more communicative during sex.

  47. Tank says

    To all the nervous 30-40-50-something ladies, understand this: take very good care of yourself, dress appropriately (a 50 year old trying to look 20 is not hot or sexy, it is just sad), conduct yourself with class, and for Pete’s sake, put ‘dat pussy on your husbands, plain and simple! You’ll be fine. Trust me. I’m 32, happily married, and my wife just keeps getting better. By contrast, I tried to have a simple, pleasant conversation yesterday with a twenty-ish college girls. She works in the firm across the hall from mine, we road the elevator down the street together, and walked up the block to the bank. Now, I’m 6′, 250 lbs, and built like a . . . well, a tank. This conversation was f_&king, excrutiatingly painful. The point: don’t worry about the young chicks, there dense, vapid, sexually inexperienced, and otherwise unappealing the moment they start talking; and that is if they can look up from a 2×2 inch Facebook wall on their smart phones. Married men with serious shit to do have no time to orchestrate an affair with a frivolous, disposable coed. So, ladies: 1)class, 2) health, 3) pussy and you win.

  48. Linanati says

    I’ll have to ask my husband if he’s familiar with the MILF term. He probably is.

    David, maybe your wife got too used to worrying about the kids overhearing. :-)

  49. Tank says

    I’m glad y’all appreciated my perspective. After reading my post back I am embarassed at all of the typos. I kinda freestyled that. Ooops! I’ll proofread next time. Nevertheless, I’m serious about what I said. I’m an attorney and I have occasion to work around gobs of classy, professional MILFS. All b.s. aside, if I weren’t married to a damn good woman that I respect and feel proud to know (not to mention the great rack and manicured lady-scape), then I’d kick my way through a crowd of those iPhone, UGG boot, LovePink ditzes to get to a grown woman that knows who she is, what she wants, and – like the ol’ Tankster here – has no time for the bullshit.

  50. AnonJohn says

    Who am I talking to here where knowing what the term MILF is isn’t just common knowledge? Hasn’t this been well known since about 1995?

    This is a good reminder to me that I just may be coming from an entirely different universe then some of you folks.

    Which is fine, but good to know.

    As much as wanting to fuck younger women is a biological imperative, so is desiring variety. Literally minutes after having crazy monkey sex on the hood of my car, midday during the work week – my head turns from new a different walking by. It was that moment where I realized that even if my girl sneaks out from work and bangs me at noon on a tuesday, new and different will always be a distraction.

    Guess I just have to over come. But I can tell you, that if I’m not getting it on the regular at home, it will be harder and harder to do so.

    Draining your husband’s balls frequently is the best way to keep him from straying leaving or even wandering.

  51. girl4 says

    I appreciate the comments on ‘how to keep your husband’ and I agree those things are important and have done/still do them myself. The thing is, when I was early 30’s I still thought I had a pretty high SMV. I still felt I could adequately compete with younger women for my husband and this gave me great confidence for a successful marriage. (I felt quite cocky about it) But something happens after about 35yrs. The compliments change and you become very aware of your dropping SMV (if you weren’t already) , even if you are still in fantastic shape. Most compliments now have a caveat; I look good ‘for my age’. I look good ‘for having had two kids’. And hey, I can hold my own against just about any other 37yr old, but even with a better body than a lot of younger women, my age is now a much more significant factor than it was before 35. I know this is a natural progression and I’m doing my best to navigate it gracefully. But it’s also alarming to be aware of it and I don’t think I will ever return to that cocky confidence I had.

  52. Linanati says

    AnonJohn, in 1995, I was only 16. My husband has indicated that MILF is a term from and category of porn, which I certainly was not watching at the age of 16. I’m always behind on slang terms anyway. Even if I’d caught onto the porn use of the term, I still might not have gotten that it can be applied to women IRL who are in their 30’s and 40’s and are experienced with and like sex. Since it’s a compliment as Athol says, then it’s good.

    Girl4, I’m going to be there in 2 or 3 years too. People don’t add “for your age” onto compliments yet, but I don’t pull the kind of male attention I used to either. My husband still thinks I’m beautiful though, and that’s what matters. It used to be kinda stressful when men would try to tempt me into affairs because I was worried my husband would think there really was something going on. It would be nicer though if it was my moral fortitude that made guys give up, instead of my age making me less desirable. :-)

  53. Angeline says

    Athol – very blunt, but very true. Ian – thank you, thank you, thank you! I tend to “pshaw” compliments from my guy, but I’m getting better at gracefully appreciating his appreciation. I realized I was being insulting to discount that. *He* thinks I’m the most beautiful woman ever, and that is such a gift. He’s also the first guy I’ve ever met to really articulate the appreciation for what we women consider flaws – freckles, that little mole on my cheek, and especially the one on my ass, and he takes the time to not just notice other women, but comment on why – which can be illuminating. “Wow, look at her walk.” His choices are fascinating, too. It’s often a “MILF”.

    I hated, hated, hated! that term applied to me before I realized it truly was a compliment. As Ian said, there’s no equivalent for older women to convey a sexy presentation that isn’t slutty, and doesn’t have wifely connotations. Ian’s wonderfully encouraging post put the cherry on top of the post for me. I do the caring, enthusiastic sex, and admiring/respecting/submitting things, but was really starting to feel some concern as I move into my middle 50s.

  54. Jane says

    Does a woman’s rank have much do to with her face though? With two women of matching height and BMI’s in similar shape, will the more striking of the two in the face department outrank the other? I’ve been told time and again that the face trumps the body by men. Is this true?

  55. PocketAces says

    Angeline: Never understood why some people thought freckles are bad. Personally, freckles + red hair = YES.

    Jane: Ceteris paribus, better face wins. Would a better face outrank a better body? Probably depends on the judge, and how bad/good the face or body is. I’d probably fall in the “cover the face, fuck the base” camp, but we all have our limits. It’s easier for women to fix the face than the body, with enough pancake makeup, nearly anyone can have a good face. It takes real work and restraint to have a good body.

    How to trick people into thinking you’re good looking

  56. says

    I don’t find myself disagreeing with you much, but I think your estimate of the late twenties for the peak of male SMV is way off. Dr. David Buss pegs it at 35-45 based on his research, with minimal decline over the next two decades. I’m over 50 and if anything young women under 30 seem more attracted to me now than every…certainly more than when i was 25.

  57. Louise says

    This all sounds totally exhausting. All this straining to maintain your attractiveness etc. Is it really worth it? I mean, if you’ve got a husband who is hankering after younger flesh, is it really going to make any difference how much you work out etc? And do women of 48 really go on dating sites? Why on earth do they want to start all that again at their time of life? How fatiguing. Imagine trying to get used to a new relationship at that age. Ghastly. And the menopause probably coming up soon as well, enough to cope with without a man to worry about.

    Of course younger men are more attractive than older ones. I took some pleasure in studying the hot young removal men who moved my mother in law’s stuff to her retirement flat on Friday. I’d have to be blind not to realise that fit young men in their 20s are infinitely more attractive than old men in their 50s. But realistically,
    I know I couldn’t get one, and if I could he’d wear me out very quickly. So I just enjoy the view.

  58. horseman says

    Excellent analysis but I prefer barrels. ;-) Horse joke.
    But dont forget the key point is the distribition over age. Imagine two distribution curves age v avg rank with a normal.distribution. The female rad rises to twenty plateaus through thirty then radically drops off. Overlay ththat with the male curve. Very slow growth teen through late twenties then double the upward slope thirty to forty five (best income +physical years) then Decline but slower late forties to late fifties as physical drops but earning rise compensates. Major drop ala female is not until late late fifties.
    The point is women can run the map on men twenty to thirty. we all know they do hence bitches and entitlement princesses. But after thirties their value drops as the mans is actually accelerating. The problem is the conceptual lag. at say late thirties she is bored thinks she is still twenty rank and can do better. at same time he wakes up to lowering wife value his higher value and realizes he doesnt need to put up with her bull. Hence she threatens and he says fine. vice versa he threatens and she thinks she can do better. bingo thw big D.
    However in second maeriages he scores great as he is still attractive and the glut of women makea those who realize their mistake in hubbie one are the ones to go for. also why many divorced men have harems. they cant trust to settle Dow. and the momenr a date even smells of pulling entitled wife crap she os out.
    Im not endorsing just observing.
    Ps. guys dressage horse shows great place to meet high quality women. used to high lifestyle usually intellige.t and ratio of women to men is about a zillion to one.

  59. Rachael says

    “And do women of 48 really go on dating sites? Why on earth do they want to start all that again at their time of life? How fatiguing”
    A bit jaded wouldn’t you say? 48 is hardly too old for perusing a relationship. My father in law found the woman of his dreams in a ‘personals add. They were both in ther late 40’s and have been together for 18 years now. He still smacks her ass as he passes and she takes bloody good care of him. It’s lovely to see.

  60. ZLX1 says

    “Does a woman’s rank have much do to with her face though? With two women of matching height and BMI’s in similar shape, will the more striking of the two in the face department outrank the other? I’ve been told time and again that the face trumps the body by men. Is this true?”

    Yeah it does have to do with the total physical assessment, but women have been able to use makeup and hair to improve that department for about five millennium. I personally find that women age from the face down.

    Meaning: their faces (particularly white women) seem to show signs of aging well before their bodies do. But, good news: if you keep the body in reasonable shape and you take that fact with your hubby’s natural “wife goggle” effect, it ain’t even an issue. Long as you don’t blimp up. And I’m real serious about that. You can’t control wrinkles to a large degree (don’t smoke, don’t tan, don’t drink a lot) but you can control your weight your whole life barring any medical condition.

    If you were back out fresh on the dating market. It is an issue to be aware of. Any new man you meet will have zero memories of you at age 23 which means he will have no “young wife memory goggles” to put on. His memories of you start the day he meets you. If that happens to be when you are 21, better for you. If it happens to be when you are 45, it is what it is.

    That’s why I feel bad sometimes for my ex-wife, just a little though – she made her bed, boo-hoo. She’s not old, but she’s not young. She’s about to hit 37 and she put on some weight post divorce. Any new man she meets won’t remember her at 20 like when I met her. She was tall and tight and…sorry where was I? Oh, yeah, so any new dude she meets is going from day one when he met her on the memory bank. It’s sad really when a wife jumps ship in her thirties not realizing Eat, Pray, Love was just a bad book and movie and reality is much, much crueler to women of that age. There is no line of rich doctors or lawyers waiting to sweep a divorced, late thirties mother of two off her feet. Sigh. Realistically the best time for her to bail would have been twenty-something. As it is, she bailed at a time when it was best for me, although I didn’t know that at first. But enough of my drama.

    Philosophically…to the larger theme I see here and some of the angst among the women-folk:

    So many wives just don’t get it about how totally into them their average joe husband is. If you keep the weight off, fuck him like a champ (or just fuck him please), publicly and privately display your loyalty to him, don’t make him feel dumb or foolish in front of people, and do a minimum of nurturing behavior a few times a week, that dude is N-E-V-E-R going anywhere. N-E-V-E-R. Even if he should somehow grow a sack or go crazy one day and cheat on you, he’s not going anywhere. You have him. Even if you don’t want him sometimes, lol.

    Now, doing those other things might not have been important stuff on your radar when you were 25, and him just getting laid a couple times a week or month was all the effort that was needed to keep him hooked, but sooner or later guys figure it out. If they’ve been living with a disagreeable woman who was really falling down in those other departments, especially the having sex department, those guys get to a point when they are 40-ish and say to themselves “Is this it?” “Is this the best I get after all these years of work and putting up with this and all I get to look forward to is more begging for pussy and being turned down by my own wife?” “Why in the hell am I putting up with this shit?” Why indeed? Or something to that effect.

    Double dog dangerous on this front if dude is clued in and starts running a MAP, the wife doesn’t respond positively and his memories of the marriage to you are a lot of fighting, a lot of being made to feel like a chump and not a lot of sex. They might stray if an easy opportunity comes along. They might just retreat into hobbies and disengage completely. They might wait until the last kid finishes high school or college and blamo – you got your butt surprise divorce-o’ed.

    But I digress…

    Back to your original question:

    I think the best advice/opinion I can give is if one area is showing age (and eventually all areas will) compensate with what you can control. If you are a 40-ish woman and getting some crows feet, etc. Keep that body tight as you can. There are lots of women who look 40 in the face but have a body that is out of this world. There are women who are 20 something and have that youthful glow but sabotage it by being fat pigs with big flappy upper arms.

    There are some women who completely sabotage themselves, they are 20-something and look 40 in the face. Before I even read their profile details I can already tell you it’s going to say that she smokes, she likes to go to the beach a lot (a tanner), and under favorite activities it lists “going out with friends” (drinking a lot), plus she ain’t exactly sprightly in the weight department. Personality and the fact that she owns Serenity on Blu-Ray can’t make up for all that.

    I guess in your original scenario if you took two women the exact same age, and pretty much the same figure but one looked more youthful in the face then I would give preference to that. That is assuming I don’t know them, I have no prior relationship with either one of them and have not had a conversation with them. The more physically attractive of the two could well open her mouth and speak and suddenly she seems real unattractive because she’s an idiot or a bitch. The “less” physically attractive one could be all feminine and warm and just push my buttons and I’m going with that.

    Looking youthful in the face has so many variables though like hairstyle (keep it long), tasteful makeup, etc. etc. etc. that I do believe well into her fifties a woman can keep that department going strong by putting in the effort. By way of example, just tonight cruising online I came across a profile of a twenty something woman. In one face shot she had long hair and I thought she was really pretty. Her most recent pic, she chopped it all off and I thought she looked like a dude. Next… Next happened to be a 42 year old woman who was slender and had long brown hair and tasteful clothes and makeup. Yummy.

    I don’t even know her. Imagine if I had known her since twenty and she had been laying me like tile the last twenty years and doing some of the other things I mentioned above. Think I would walk away from that for a facebook addicted, self absorbed virtual retard? Nope. No way in hell. So….long way around….if any ladies here have some catching up to do in their homework for the other departments aside from physical looks, get caught up. ASAP.

    And don’t be fat. If you think it’s not much fun being fat and married think how much more not fun it will be being fat, divorced and back out there among the sharks.

  61. ZLX1 says

    Jay-sus. sorry for the super long comment lol. It’s late and I just meandered all over the place.

  62. Rachael says

    don’t apologize you made several good points. I enjoyed your comments. thanks.

  63. Jane says


    Thank you for such a thorough and well thought out post. I’m turning 39 at the end of the year. I’m not over- weight and have never smoked nor tanned, so hopefully the wrinkles will be slow moving. My husband loves my cooking and home-making but freaks out at my working out. Says he prefers me curvier. I was 111lbs. when we met (size zero) and it was too thin, I agree. I’m a size 4 now and miserable. Wanting to be back to my usual size 2 (weight 116lbs.). It’s a new relationship (2 years), but I am astounded to have found what seems like the only man on earth that doesn’t want me thinner. Anyway, to add to it, I’ve got long hair (almost to the waist layered) and my mother and older sisters are pressuring me to cut it all off since I’m pushing 40. They tell me it’s ridiculous to have long hair “at my age” – so depressing. It’s amazing to me to see women around me that don’t wear makeup, cut their hair off, wear pajama pants to the grocery store and wonder why their husbands gawk at younger girls all the time. DUH!

    I’ll hold out on the hair cut, and will continue to lay my husband like tile whilst making him 2 homemade meals a day from scratch. But I do have to say that the peer pressure from the female side of things is fierce and guys should cut women some slack for that. Appreciate your ladies that don’t cave into the sludge of getting the short cuts and quitting the makeup and heels. Women are not kind to women that retain their femininity and long hair/makeup/heels routine.

  64. ZLX1 says


    Your last paragraph is particularly illuminating. You have to always ask yourself what other people’s motivations are when they ask you to do something that in your gut feels funny. Often people will pressure you to do the things they have done, even if they themselves are not happy with what they have done, in order that you should be as miserable as they are. Lol. Peer pressure, “If I’m miserable, I wanna make sure everyone else is as miserable as me…” Keep doing what you’re doing and ignore those jealous beeyotches.

  65. Geoff says

    @Horseman – “However in second maeriages he scores great as he is still attractive and the glut of women makea those who realize their mistake in hubbie one are the ones to go for. also why many divorced men have harems. they cant trust to settle Dow. and the momenr a date even smells of pulling entitled wife crap she os out.”
    – Been there and this is exactly how I managed things. I had a “crazy/spoiled/entitled bitch-o-meter” that was very sensitive and accurate. I could spot them miles and miles away. If she made it to “dating” status and wasn’t genuinely appreciative of gestures, meals, compliments…she was history.
    @Jane – Women in their 40’s can still look feminine with “past the shoulder” length hair done right. Remember…someone (obviusly not a man) told Kate Gosselin her hair looked great and she fell for it.

  66. Brian says

    @jj (the first poster)

    Dude, have you heard of this thing called the internet, where you can research simple things in seconds? Catherine Zeta Jones is 42. Is she still attractive? Absolutely. Is she as attractive as she was 10 years ago? Absolutely not.

  67. says


    Umm… not sure what else you expect in a blog that’s entirely about being attractive to the opposite sex, in the comments section to a post specifically about women being attractive to men. That comment is a little like complaining that the customer reviews section for an Amazon product page for a hammer has devolved into evaluating hammers based on their usefulness at pounding in nails and saying that there’s a lot more to life than being good at nailing things to other things. I mean, yeah, there is… but that’s not really the point, is it?

  68. Jane says

    I want to be a play thing for my husband. I hope that I can fulfill that role while still discussing Sting Theory over dinner and then arguing history or politics. One isn’t mutually exclusive to the other. It’s exasperating to be told by women that wanting to take care of yourself and yeah, be a “play thing” is demeaning.

  69. Jane says

    Crap – typo above… meant String Theory not Sting Theory…

    Now nobody accuse me of making a typo because I enjoy high heels.

  70. says

    @mina: You’re right, I don’t think that the distinction you were trying to make between physical attractiveness / other kinds of attractiveness came through particularly well in that first post I was replying to.

    In any case, I don’t think anyone would argue with you that there’s more to attraction than looks… but arguing that looks don’t enter into it at all is just as silly. Maybe in a thousand years when we’re all brains in jars we’ll have evolved past the need to keep our frontal lobes looking fresh and put some flattering food coloring in our jar water, but in the world we have to live in, looks still matter, for men as well as women. See also: any of Athol’s posts advising his male readers to work out, dress nicely, etc.

    There’s a great big area on the spectrum between wanting to fuck a model and not caring what she’s got between her ears (not that there aren’t people like that), and being so hyper-evolved that you can manage to be sexually attracted to someone who’s utterly let herself go as long as she can hold a conversation (never actually met anyone like that, sad to say, though I’ve met a few who’ve managed to fool themselves into believing it), and you seem to be ignoring it.

    @Jane: Is Sting Theory the theory that describes whether you like his solo work better or worse than his stuff with the Police? ‘Cause that could be good dinner conversation too.

  71. Jennifer 6 says

    Yep, this is why I left here, why I have such damned mixed feelings, why I wish I knew how much shit and how much gold is in your hyped-to-the-sky books claiming 100% successful sexual wares, why I despise the mixed bags some bloggers have to offer. You shouldn’t have quit your day job.

  72. Jennifer 6 says

    Basically Athol, yeah, I like a lot of your stuff; I thought I was in heaven when I first got here, then felt like I tripped and broke my knees on a rocky hill when I read your stuff about how to talk to a fat wife. Over and over, you add “yeah it’s mean, but it WORKS” to advice like this, because you see just about everything as better than divorce. But you’ve never done something so cruel yourself, and you have no idea how that could wreck a woman’s heart and trust in her husband for possibly the rest of their marriage; you do not know every facet of a woman’s heart, even if you’re familiar with their sexual preferences. Anyways, generally, I see you as a good-natured fellow, Athol: you’re funny, you’re often clever, hell you’re even nice most of the time. But you and your wife are also narcissists, by sharing your successful 24/7 sex life and intimate details as well as your real names and pictures. And even you, even you, my friendly Middle Earth chap, make the every-gamer’s mistake of basically assuming your advice is universal in all its facets, or very close. SO much of your stuff is just good common sense or extra tidbits of funny/clever advice, but other times it could seriously hurt someone. Geez, even typing this, I recall my fondness for you in so many things, and people are responsible for choosing to apply your advice and how, so I’m not expressing hatred by any means; I’m simply saying my goodbye, expressing it more for me than you. You’re generally right on the common sense stuff: men, be assertive, be light, be in shape, be a good listener. But the Bible already covers the balance of manhood, and it does it much better; without that, you’ll always be left in the dark with some of your advice. I wish you well, that you find your own better balance in advice and keep your marriage bed sacred, I’m not even asking for publication of this or response, just a reading of it.

    God bless, Jennifer

  73. Jennifer 6 says

    One last note: I do think withholding sex is cruel and unnatural, not to mention narcissistic, but mind games I don’t recommend as a solution. If a man is attractive, she’ll notice the attention he draws on her own; all he can do is stay in shape, for all imaginable reasons. And when I said you don’t need to publish my comments, I meant any of them, since I don’t plan on being here to read any responses; they were mainly meant for you anyway.

  74. Jennifer 6 says

    “This is why Demi Moore looked utterly amazing for her age and she still got taken to the curb. Seriously, why was anyone surprised by this?”

    So it’s ok for you to dump your wife if she’s not AS fit as younger women? Really? Ugh. Sorry, I thought marriage vows were for good, and she’s not even plain. Didn’t you just say that men really just want food, sex, and a good home? Yet it’s justfied for that overgrown 12-year-old to dump his gorgeous older wife? Whatever. This is really now my last comment.

    Never said it was justifed, I said it was predictable and unsurprising. If Demi Moore married an “overgrown 12-year-old”, what else was she expecting to happen?

  75. ZLX1 says


    I think all over the blog there is a lot of talk about the many components that make up a total package of attractiveness from both a man and a woman’s perspective. This post is just about bare naked physical attractiveness, and the reality of it.

    I don’t disagree with you in principle that there is a lot more to being attractive than looks. In my extremely long post somewhere yonder above I stated that the subjectively more physically attractive of the two women could open her mouth and spew out a bunch of dumb, thereby rendering her less attractive to me – and maybe this is an important point – less attractive to me as any kind of longer term prospect.

    She will have immediately crossed the line from “possible relationship material” to bangable but not dateable. The second woman in the scenario whom I described as being a lil’ less physically attractive but all feminine and warm would definitely be in the category of “dateable” and bangable. Hooray! I believe our good friend Badger has a post over on his blog about “The Ladder” and how what I described above works for a lot of guys. If you haven’t read it, check it out for sure.

  76. horseman says

    @mina and @zlx
    Both of you are right from your perspectives. I personally balance lookps amd brains and work ethic as “attractive”. However zxl’s first post nailed the midlife flip of the power curve. Many woomen and men rest kn their laurels of attractiveness i. whatever form and mistreat ignore their spouse. at some point that attractiveness fades through age re beauty or job peak as status etc. then the abused party see the abusers power decline and says wtf why should i put up witj tje crap if Im getting better and tjey are getting worse. for men its she got old for women its he got borimg or job obsessed. either way itis damn near fatal.
    then in the meet market at forty odd then the basic posts here are true as the meet market defaults to the average buyer. women its status which retains as long as he is employed. for men it is looks…mostly…and that fades.
    But..and big but how many posts balamced looks with brains eg no thamks to twwnty year old bimbos.
    the moral of the story is man or woman if you have the upper hand do not not not abuse it as eventually inevitably the power will flip and you will then reap what you sow.

  77. horseman says

    we arent that far out of the mainstream we jusr have better friends…in tje barn.
    But a herd is a prime example of all athols teaching. herd leader rules by assertiveness coupled with protection. a herd will mot follow a Prick but the best balance of alpha and beta. My male herd leader is the apex of quiet dominance. he is old crippled and has a large belgian mare as second she could physically unsurp him in a heartnbeat but he quietly asserts himself just enough that everyone backs off. in a fight he would be not much good but if there is a strange sound he is there first checking it out puttimg himself on the line to protect his herd

  78. ZLX1 says

    Here’s another thought…people say things like “I don’t want him or her to like me because of X, I want them to like me because of who I am”

    I used to say things in my head like “I want a woman to like me for me, not because of my career, money or the things I have.” I guess a woman might say “I want him to like me for me and not just my boobs.” Lolz.

    Well, all those extra things like career, bank account, clothes, your looks, your hobbies, talents, interests, hair cut, boobs, personality, etc. Those ARE all a part of what makes up the total package of you that you bring to the world. If someone likes one, some or all of those things about you, then good job! You made yourself into an interesting and multifaceted person who has a lot of things that are likable about them. The other person IS actually liking you for you, because those things are all a part of what makes you, you.

    Where we nitpick is “Yeah, but I want them to like me primarily for X and not for Y.” Okay, but that’s not really under your control is it? You can’t remote control someone’s brain and insert into it what you want them to like most about you. (Jedi powers notwithstanding)

    You can of course make a decision about your reaction to it, which could be wrong and based on your perception of the ‘facts’, but nevertheless we all makes these kinds of decisions: “I think she likes me primarily for my car or my money, therefore that is not acceptable to me.” or “He only likes me for my boobs, that is not acceptable to me.” Are these statements true or not? I dunno. You have to figure that out and how you feel about it.

    Even if they are true, I don’t think it’s cause for offense. You met someone, and the thing they really, really, like about you is X because it meets a need they have in their mind and their life to have X. Big deal. Unfortunately you are disappointed because you were really, really hoping they were going to like you for Y.

    Well, you get to decide what to do with that and if you like them enough that you can live with the ‘fact’ that they are mostly interested in you because of X. If you’re not okay with that, you can walk and keep looking. This is healthy because you very well could be in a situation where someone is just using you for money or someone is just using your for sex (I’m okay with that one), so you have to decide if it’s a healthy exchange going on. Or then again, you could be totally misreading it. [Ahh, the complexities of love]

    I think in real relationships there is always some primary thing that one partner finds compelling about the other. Some main characteristic. In order for a real relationship to develop they also tend to find a lot of the other things about you likable, though they may not be as high up on the scale of importance to THEM that you would like them to be. You can find this out, if you don’t already know, by talking to them. But, if you think you might not like the answer or are not prepared for the revelation, think twice before asking.

    If you were really hoping they would say “I love your personality and the way you hold your fork.” and what they say is “I get a boner every time I think about your butt.” You might get miffed. Don’t fret too much though, I’m quite certain if they married you that they like your personality and they probably notice that they way you hold your fork is kind of cute also.

    But back on target – nothing beats 19 year old boobs. :-P

  79. says

    There’s also the simple fact that liking someone and being sexually attracted to them aren’t always the same thing. If they were, the Friend Box wouldn’t be a thing that people get put in. The things that make me want to spend time with my lady aren’t the same things that make me want to bone her, and I know for a fact that the reverse is true to at least some extent. You can get pissed about that or you can learn to make the best of it.

  80. Justme says

    To all the young women out there. I am 49, I keep fit, and I love my long hair. Nobody is going to make me cut it just because I am over 40. My husband is in his sixties. He met me when I was 22. Aging happens, if we are lucky. I feel really good about myself. I am often told I don’t look my age, but I think it’s because many people just assume that once you are over 40, you should look like shit. We have a beautiful, 23 yr. old daughter. I tell her to keep staying in shape and be as fit as she can be. Why? Because nothing replaces youth! You can be heavy in your 20’s and then get in shape when you are in your 30’s and 40’s, and that’s great. But you will never get back the years of being carefree and young. My husband and I have built a great life together. I want to look sexy for him and I want to look at myself in the mirror and like what I see. And I do! I think I look pretty good and do get looks and complements. Now ofcoarse, if some pretty young thing is standing next to me are all eyes going to be on her? Ofcoarse! Because people are attracted to youth and beauty. But I don’t take offense. I had my day and now the young pretty girl is having hers. It’s just the way of life. I hope to be doing my yoga and excercising even into my very old age when society will treat me as an invisible person. I won’t care. As long as I can lift weights and be active, I’ll be happy. And by the way, I love older men! You won’t ever catch me being a cougar. When Demi Moore married that young guy, my first thought was, just watch. When he wants to have kids, he will dump her and go with a much younger woman.

    I agree with everything that has been written so far. To the men who want the young girls, that’s great, but make sure you are bringing it too! As in a big, fat paycheck. Because while you guys want the arm candy, many women want men who can comfortably afford to raise a family, go on vacation, have a nice car and a nice home, and money in the bank. More so than a great body and a head of hair, when it comes down to it. I don’t want to have your kids, take care of the house, and support you too. It would be exhausting and put a screeching halt to any kind of sexual relatiohship. You can’t be broke and expect to attract a hot young thing. You don’t have to be rich, but you have to have potential to be a good provider.

    I think I have the best husband in the world. He’s a great father to our kids, great provider, and can fix anything around the house. I consider myself lucky to have him in my life. We have been together 27 years. The least I can do is be a good mother to our kids, be sexy for him and provide a good home life. We are empty nesters and our relationship is better than ever. So yeah, there will always be a good looking young person to look at, but nothing beats being married to your best friend. So you young women out there, twenties, and thirties, don’t fret. Keep yourself fit, keep your mind sharp, and be happy. I’ll never be 20 again, so screw it! I will live in the present and be the best I can be for me and my man.

  81. Jane says

    @Justme – Um, can I admit I have a serious girl crush on you?? :) You exemplify grace and beauty and it oozes from the screen. Thank you for so proficiently telling it how it is. It scares me to see people upset about aging. Do they ever stop to realize the ramifications of the alternative? It’s an honor to age. Plain and simple. I know it’s an exercise in humility too to see time begin to etch itself upon us, but with it come other gifts, wisdom, perspective, and hopefully if we are very lucky as women, self-confidence that is simply not there in our 20s. Being a nurturing partner and mother, a responsible homemaker and staying fit for your man is, I feel, a serious show of love and a return on his investments in being the provider and killing the icky bugs for us.

  82. Angeline says

    @mina – the focus on looks in this post is necessary to drive home to those who have been coasting on the beauty of a face, or a beautiful set of boobs, to the exclusion of the other things you mention. To wake them up to the fact that their only currency is devaluing by the year. And they really don’t get it, a lot of them. The things you mention are side dishes, too, not the main attractor.

    This is where your mathematic analysis goes astray as well – there is no bell curve for attractiveness, no handicapping. Because we don’t get measured by age strata – we’re measured on all of it, the total package, across all age groups. You’re saying the top 7 or 8 level of the most beautiful, fit 40 year old should be maxed out to 9 or 10 for that age group, but the perky 20 year old still busts the curve for the 40 year old, like it or not. *Because she’s still in the mix*. Like it or not. Does maturity and wisdom compensate some? Sure. But don’t kid yourself, not *all* 20 year olds are vapid Facebook addict attention whores. Some of them are quite nice girls.

    Where the 30, 40, 50 year old can shine is the build up of years of love, affection, sex, and nurturing. Knowing how he likes something cooked (and actually doing it); or that you brag to his (family,coworkers/friends) what a great ___ he is; or that he gets mad itching rash if you or the cleaners starch the inside of his shirts. If you’re both honorable people, taking good care of each other, and having fun, there’s not that much to worry about.

    It’s a tough pill to swallow to realize you (the rhetorical “you”, not you, mina) will no longer get preferential treatment for your looks. If that’s all one ever had, it’s even more devastating, or it’s so unthinkable as to be ignored and denied. Doesn’t mean the rules don’t still apply. It just means she’s going to be increasingly bitter and resentful, and not get why. The illusion Athol is puncturing is that we think we carry that cachet far longer than we actually do.

    By all means, be the best person you can be, in all the ways you can. I think the guys here have eloquently stated how much the total package and shared history still means, NOT just the surface. But expecting men, people really, to ignore something as basic as how a person looks in favor of how knowledgeable they are in history, or what a great cook/gardener/lawyer they are, is not realistic, or honest. Because his looks are surely a factor to you, too.

  83. Justme says

    Hi Jane! Thank you so much for your kind response. Personally, I think a woman doesn’t really come into her own in terms of beauty until her early forties. That’s if she has taken care of herself and made the most of her looks. But it should, I think, be a mature beauty. Not trying to look as though you are 20. I know I am in the minority when it comes to that view since we are such a youth oriented culture.

    Angeline, I completely agree with you. Great post.

    I’ll keep on reading from the sidelines. I enjoy this website since it gives me a bit of a glimpse as to what some men are really thinking. Can be an eye opener to some women. But knowledge is power.

  84. says


    If by “beauty” you’re talking about an aesthetic ideal of the sort philosophers talk about (“beauty is truth, and truth beauty” and all that), then sure, you have a point. If you’re talking sex appeal, though… sorry. 20 still beats 40.

  85. Justme says

    Hi Ben.
    I agree with you, as far as basing it strictly on sex apeal, people are attracted to youth. No doubt about it.

  86. Joseph K says

    Athol is right. This is not just theory. I am 51, my wife is 44 and she has let the passion die out of her, out of our sex life.
    This week she has had a huge wake up call. One that even took me by surprise.
    I had a very attractive young woman, 30 years younger than me, hit on me. The only reason I didn’t have sex with her is because I didn’t go for it, and my wife knows it.
    Her hamster is spinning. Last night she gave me the best blow job she has in years. Coincidence? I think not.

  87. Ayrun says

    Heh, I’m going to have to disagree with you bud. I can think of a ton of women in their 40s who are 9s or even 10s. I actually find really young women to be less attractive. Couldn’t disagree more, man.

  88. Joseph K says


    Just curious, how old are you?
    Also, how do you think the 9’s and 10’s who are now in their 40’s ranked physically when they were about 23 years old?

  89. EltaX says

    “Women in that 20-24 range are just amazingly hot. This is the hottest a women is going to be her whole life”

    Hmmm. I would say 20-29


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