I have a male friend who is 20 years younger than me. I am 46 and he is 24. He has always had a fantasy about being with an older woman and he asked me to be that person. I have spent a lot of time asking him what is wrong with his marriage and he says there is nothing wrong. I am tempted, as I am single, but I think it could destroy things for him in the future. How do I go about explaining this to him?
There are a few issues in this situation. One is whether you are willing to be a fantasy lover for this young man. The larger issue, though, is that he is a married man, and regardless of the age difference, there are personal morals in this dilemma for you both to consider.
It's possible that this young man wants to enact his long-held fantasy about sleeping with an older woman. It is a popular fantasy, particularly with younger men the idea of not being in control, of being with a more experienced woman who is sexually confident can be very erotic. Over 89 percent of surveyed men have revealed that they would like to experience a submissive role in bed, with their partner initiating and dominating them with sexual confidence. His desire to be with you may be a direct result of holding on to this fantasy, especially as it may have intensified over the years. Or else, he could just fancy you, and he's using the context of this fantasy to make it happen, to justify it, and to give you a reason to agree.
This young man is married, and he's indicated to you that there's nothing wrong with his marriage. This is possible. While some infidelity occurs because of tension or problems within the relationship, sometimes an extra-marital liaison occurs purely out of temptation. The person simply wasn't thinking of their partner, or the relationship. Mostly these opportunistic affairs are impetuous and show a complete lack of rational thought. However, this doesn't seem to be the case here. Instead, this young man is thinking, a lot. He's thinking about you, and his desire to have sex with you: an older woman, his fantasy made reality.
In an affair, the secretive planning and talking can be just as damaging (to the relationship, and the other partner) as the sex itself. You need to decide whether you can be okay with the consequences of your actions. Yes, as you say, you are single. And for a single woman in her 40s (at any age actually!) to have an attractive man in his 20s desire you is sexy, and an ego boost. It would feel terrific, and be a huge temptation. I understand the magnetic pull of that desire and attraction. However, if you go through with it, you would be knowingly entering into a sexual relationship with a married man. Are you comfortable with this? I think there's a part of you that isn't, because you are asking for advice about how to turn him away.
And on that issue, things are very simple. You do not need to explain anything to him. He is a grown man who took vows of marriage. He doesn't need to have anyone explain to him that having an affair could be detrimental to his future and his relationship. A fantasy that stays in the mind is okay, some would argue healthy, even. A fantasy that gets enacted into reality, with someone else you, or another older woman, or anyone else for that matter is infidelity. He knows this, and you don't need to explain it to him. I suggest you set some boundaries and avoid temptation by not seeing your friend for awhile. Let the sexual tension cool, and let him understand his sexual fantasy will stay as just that. And if you want a toy boy, find one who isn't married.
For more information and to find about about Gabrielle's latest book, Spicy Sex please see Dr Gabrielle's website.