It can be difficult to move on when an older man breaks your heart or when you realize that pursuing him is no longer realistic or healthy. In order to move past your older crush, examine those qualities that attracted you to him and then examine yourself, allowing proper time to grieve the loss so that you can find healing.
While it's possible to organically develop a crush on someone of any age, certain characteristics of older men may particularly spark your interest. The lecture "Female Mate Preferences," from the Evolutionary Studies Consortium, suggests that ancestral females preferred older men as advanced age indicated the successful acquisition of resources. While this is less of a make-or-break quality in today's modern world, you may find the notion of a partner well-established in his career and finances comforting. He also may appeal to you if he seems ready to settle down and have children. Unearthing your reasons for being attracted to an older guy can help you learn about yourself and about what you want in a partner. It can also lend you a sense of objectivity that can help lessen the pain of losing your crush.
In crushes, it is easy to become so fixated on compelling qualities that you overlook the negative ones. In this case, look not only at his personal flaws but also at those aspects of his age that may have led to incompatibilities. If, for instance, he has already lived through your current phase of life -- struggling to make ends meet, figuring out career ambitions -- you two may run into trouble relating to one another down the line. If the age gap corresponds to a wide divide between leisure activities, a union between you could have been doomed from the start. Focusing on the logical answers for why it wouldn't have worked will help you move on from your crush.
Back to the Future
Sometimes, a crush is hard to let go of if it is enmeshed with dreams for the future. Additionally, if your crush seemed to be groomed for nuptials, you may find yourself mourning potential marriage and family plans that hinged on him. Allow yourself to feel the loss and grieve it. Then return to your vision for the future and do some editing. Rather than immediately replacing him in your thoughts with another man, craft a vivid picture of your own successes, adventures and friendships. Using these dreams as motivation, set specific goals for yourself, such as making yourself a more valuable employee by learning conversational Spanish within the next six months.
Reconnect with Friends
Perhaps your intent focus on this man translated to less time with your friends, or less of an inclination to engage in the same activities with them you used to. If so, now is the time to reconnect. Ask your friends to go bowling, play laser tag or dance the night away -- anything that reunites you with the type of fun you may have neglected while trying to impress your older crush. Even if you have kept in touch with friends and therefore need no reunion, you will probably find their support invaluable as you release your crush from your heart.
Jae Kemp has been writing and editing professionally since 2010. In addition to reviewing novels, memoirs and psychology/self-help books for major review services, Kemp has served as a copywriter, commercial and creative editor, and staff article writer.