Finding Love in the Post-College World: The Age Problem

An older friend of mine once advised me that I should stick with my college boyfriend. I thought this was strange advice at the time. I had warned so many friends of mine upon high school graduation that sticking with their high school boyfriends was a terrible idea, so I figured the same would go for college.
Weren’t you supposed to explore your options? Date? Have fun in your twenties before settling down in your thirties? Now that I’ve graduated, I know exactly why she said it. Dating post-college is a major shock to the system.
I went on a date recently with a guy who I’d met at a poetry reading. I thought he might be a few years older than me and I was okay with that, but on the date it came to light that he was actually many, many years older than me, fourteen to be exact (that’s Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher territory). I figured I’d dated older men before, so I decided to give him a chance. We talked about jobs, our shared neighborhood haunts (we both lived in the East Village), and then the subject of past relationships came up and he told me about his ex.
They were pretty young when they met and were together for six years, they got a dog and when they broke up he kept it. The natural question that popped into my head was: Why didn’t you get married? Then, he dropped the bomb: they had gotten married. I’d somehow found myself on a date with Divorced Guy.
Going into a date blind (different from a blind date), with no idea how old the person is (and no hint as to their marital status), is one of the major post-college dating obstacles I’ve encountered. There’s no longer any guarantee that the person you’re having drinks with isn’t thirty-seven with an ex-wife.
Now I’ve learned ways to sneak in age-inquiring questions when chatting up a guy for the first time. My favorite is to ask what television show was their favorite when they were a kid. “Doug” is a good sign, pre-TV Land “Brady Bunch” is not.

The Bandana: Do or Don’t?
The Bandana: Do or Don’t?
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