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Cougar Myth

Cougar Trend Exists in Pop Culture Only

With schools for cougar training and cub conventions for preying, you'd think the cougar-cub trend had gone wild. But a new study, which surveyed 22,000 online daters, found it to be a myth among real men and women.

Instead women and men sought stereotypically aged partners. Women preferred men who were the same age or slightly older (and wealthier), while men preferred attractive, younger women. In fact, the older men get the younger their ideal woman is.

So is the boy toy a myth? The study seems to think so, saying the cougar phenomena is currently contained to celebrities and pop culture. It, however, did not survey the US, but it did talk to several similar countries like Canada, Britain, Australia, and Germany.


It could be a matter of time before the boy-toy myth becomes a reality — though I'd say it would have happened already — but it's probably just a small number of younger-men-loving women, and that's all it ever will be.

Are you surprised?
Photo courtesy HBO

Join The Conversation
LikeThoseShoes LikeThoseShoes 6 years
oh and fyi... not referring to myself as a cougar... just implying as a woman OUTSIDE of hollywood... its totally capable of happening.
Gdeeaz Gdeeaz 6 years
I know two women who I consider cougars. One is my moms 46 year old coworker and the other is my moms 40 year old best friend. They both got divorced about 3 years ago and since then have only dated men in their 20s. It's really weird since they both have children who are in their late teens and one is in their early 20s.
postmodernsleaze postmodernsleaze 6 years
Studio16 Studio16 6 years
I define a cougar as an older woman going for a younger man. (And by older woman I mean 45+). A 30 year old woman dating a 26 year old man isn't really a cougar. I see a lot of the latter types, but I never see a full on cougar. All of the older women I know date men their own ages, sometimes older. And no, I'm not surprised that it was cooked up by Hollywood. Hollywood's also cooked up the belief that a bunch of Italians getting drunk and going to clubs makes for good TV.
Beauty Beauty 6 years
My beau is four years younger, but the first person to call me a cougar is going to hear something from me.
Pistil Pistil 6 years
24 is not a cougar. And no, I'm not surprised that Hollywood and Reality TV are not totally accurate representations of reality.
LikeThoseShoes LikeThoseShoes 6 years
i say this is bull! i might be only 24... but im totally guilty of digging younger guys... 21 is the youngest i'll go (i mean... you gotta be able to take em out with you)... they're just fun.
stephley stephley 6 years
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