Those were the ages of Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore when the couple tied the knot last year, making their highly publicized May-December romance official.
But even though their older woman-younger man relationship may be among the world's most visible, it's not that unusual anymore.
Braving "robbing the cradle" jokes, almost one-third of women between ages 40 and 69 are dating younger men (defined as 10 or more years younger).
But what about the notion that men are "hard-wired" to seek a smooth-faced, curvy receptacle for reproduction and thus are drawn to younger women?
"Humans are relatively flexible species," Michael R.
Cunningham, Ph D, a psychologist in the department of communications at the University of Louisville, tells Web MD. You can override a lot of biology in pursuit of other goals." Interestingly, Cunningham did an unpublished study of 60 women in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, who were shown pictures of men aged to those decades. We should marry people within two years of our age.
"The women," he says, "were more interested in men their own age or older." As for the men, he says: "I guess it could be nice not to hang around a ditz with no knowledge of music or something like that." "We have strong 'shoulds' on ways of partnering up," Kathryn Elliott, Ph D, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, explains to Web MD. We pathologize anything that isn't within those shoulds." The key to making older women/younger man relationships work, Elliott says, is to match what she calls voltages.
"Choose someone who is your voltage type -- has the same level of intensity about life.
If the voltages are different, one becomes the pursuer and one the distancer.