Cougars and toyboys: society and taboos
"Before, when women could no longer have children, they were shunted to one side. Now, they're claiming their rights to pleasure (which men have always been entitled to), they're embarking on a second life through this phenomenon. Women no longer have a 'use-by-date' which is all for the better", adds our trendspotter. But according to him, our society is still struggling to come to grips with this phenomenon.
Sophie Cadalen is of the same opinion: "I don't think society is fully ready to accept these couples yet. There's a big gap between our liberal views and what we're actually willing to accept and allow ourselves to do. These celebrity age-gap couples live in a differenr world, nothing like our daily lives. We're tolerant of celebrity escapades which would raise eyebrows if they concerned close friends and family, or ourselves."
While on the subject of age-gap couples, it's worth pointing out that if the roles are reversed (an older man with a younger woman), this isn't even referred to as a trend!
The path towards equality is pretty long as Jean-Claude Kaufmann notes: "The contrast is striking with men, they can have an age-gap relationship much more easily. On the surface, there's no difference but in reality, deep down, people's old attitudes are well ingrained. A woman can date a man who's younger than her but it's not seen as very "normal", especially when the age difference is significant."