If you look at studies now you'll see that women have an average 9 year age range either side of their own with a preference for a small 4 years either side of their own age.
Men may not like this trend but it's happening with or without their approval.
There are two things that predict a preferred partner’s age: (a) your age and (b) your biological sex (male vs. From an evolutionary perspective, it makes sense for women to prefer mates with resources and to like partners who are more established, both of which are more likely in older partners. It turns out that, on average, women tend to be married to men a few years older than themselves (2-5 years).
Men, in contrast, are hypothesized to be most attracted to women in their reproductive prime, which tends to be when they are younger. Women’s preferences, on the other hand, hold relatively constant across their lives, not going more than a few years below their own age (extra-credit if you can identify the "cougar zone" in this figure), but women remain keen on men up to 10 years older than themselves. However, younger men (i.e., in their 20’s) tend to be married to someone of a similar age, but as they get older their wives get younger.
According to this rule, it would not be creepy for a 30 year old to date a 22 year-old, but an 18 year-old would be off-limits.
Although this is a fun rule of thumb, what does research say about age preferences for potential mates?
However, it doesn’t represent women’s preferences at all.
Age gap relationships actually work the best and they help to stop people from being ageist in the same way that mixed-race relationships help to stop people from being racist.