Wedding Woes

He'll have to live and learn.

Dear Prudence,
My twin brother is 32 and ready to settle down. He’s intelligent, fit, good-looking, and has a promising career. The problem is that he keeps dating 18 to 21 year olds and gets hurt when things doesn’t work out. Most of the time they disappear him after one date. A few have let him know the age difference is intimidating. He asks me for advice from a girl’s perspective, and I try to be honest. The girls he goes for are just too young. It’s not that all 21-year-olds are immature, but it’s such a different life stage. Most do not have the life experiences we have had, like graduating college, working professionally, living independently, or paying their own bills. My brother wants to get married; his dates are more interested in figuring themselves out lives and establishing their futures. How can I convince my brother to look for someone his own age? He asks for my advice but doesn’t take it. Should I just butt out and console him next time it doesn’t work out? I just want him to be happy.

—Age Is More Than a Number

Re: He'll have to live and learn.

  • Butt out. He's clearly not interested in changing his behavior. 
  • "I don't understand why you keep asking for my advice when you're just looking for validation of your actions/behavior."

    My BIL is odd in this way. Not from a dating standpoint (I honestly think he may be asexual/aromantic or maybe closeted LGBTQ because in the 12.5 years that I've known him, I have not once known him to have a date - with anyone.) - but in terms of friends/behavior. He's 40yo, and with the exception of 1 person, all of his friends seem to be at least 15-20 years younger than him. I guess with still living with his parents he may have a bit more in common with these guys - but he (should be) at a pretty different stage of life. 
  • If he's asking for advice, it sounds like he knows there's a problem, but he's not ready to accept the solution.  Not much the LW can do until then, except maybe play Candy Crush when he starts up about his failed relationships, I guess.
  • Pretty obvious advice.  What is the bro not understanding?  I'd probably ask him why he keeps dating an age group that is less likely to be interested in the more long term marriage/family relationship that he "supposedly" says he wants.  I put quotes around "supposedly" because it makes me wonder if he sub-consciously doesn't want that.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • I'm with Varuna. 

    Yes, I have a kid. But. It seems like all the women my age will *only* discuss husbands and children. I have a career. I have thoughts on politics and social justice and economics and ALL SORTS OF SHIT that has nothing to do with my husband or my kid. Almost all of my female friends are years - sometimes more than a decade - younger than I am, because they're *interesting*. 

    As far as the letter, well, LW can't do much more than say, "You never take my advice, so stop asking." Brother needs to examine why he goes for such younger women who are not interested in what he is. Is he actually looking to settle down? Or does he feel like he "should" be doing so, and is trying to make that happen with unsuitable women so he doesn't actually have to do it? 
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    The advice needs to stop.  If he comes looking for it LW should just say that they have the same advice as always, but since its never taken - you are going to decline offering it again.

  • kimmiinthemittenkimmiinthemitten Detroit, MI member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    Maybe it's the wine, but I wonder if brother is ready to settle down or twin sister thinks he should and is projecting?

    Exclusively dating girls who can't get into a bar when you're almost old enough to have conceived them doesn't sound like someone looking for Mrs. Right to me. 
  • I'm with V. I've made a few younger friends, because all of my friends are married with kids. Some of them even have kids in high school or getting ready to graduate and those are the ones that want to hang out again.

    Things go in cycles. You don't see them much when their kids are young, but as the kids get more independent they have more time again. I completely understand, but I'm trying to get out of the house, so I call my 27 year old friend. She is fun and likes to do things. Sometimes, she has to talk me into leaving the house. Ha

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