General chatter - Do men really care about this?




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fitmom
08-04-2011, 09:16 PM
I'm a 39 year-old happily married gal (since 1997) who's deathly afraid of turning the dreaded 40 in three months (yeah, I know what it says on my signature but I'm not liking growing older, lol). So, I've gone full-throttle with my fitness and managed to whittle myself down to an American size 2 and 117 lbs. I'm probably in the best shape of my life. My question is this: do men really care about how fit a woman is particularly as she gets um, a little older? I mean I don't expect him to look like the guy I met in college almost 20 years ago. Although for the record, he still has a full head of dark brown hair, lol. I think he's more handsome than ever. Anyway...

I remember my father joking when I was a teenager that once a woman turned 40, she'd better watch out because her hubby might trade her in for a couple of twenty-year olds. In theory, I know my DH loves me but I feel so much pressure to maintain a youthful appearance and I'm worried that a younger, prettier woman would turn his head. I know it sounds ridiculous but that's how I feel. He does tell me I'm beautiful and all that.

The closer it gets to my birthday, the more anxious and overwrought I get. Is this normal to feel this way? BTW, my DH is the same age as me (he turns 40 the day after me, lol) and is now probably 30 lbs. overweight. He has no problems with his self-esteem whatsoever and our um, 'intimate life', quite frankly, has never been better.

Do men expect women to look like cover models even as we age or is that just a stupid myth?


EagleRiverDee
08-04-2011, 09:21 PM
Each man is different. For example, I've got this one guy friend who is a GREAT friend but he's super picky about women and he divorced his wife because she gained quite a lot of weight. My sweetie, however, has been with me since I weighed 138 lbs and seen me at my high of 225. He acts more in love than ever right now and I'm back to 202. Probably he would like it if I continue to lose weight, but it's clearly not the driving factor. Still, many men are very visual and would prefer a fit woman over one who is not fit and I do think that in the initial courtship stage that looks are emphasized. That said, I feel that women should achieve fitness for themselves and not for someone else.

fitmom
08-04-2011, 09:32 PM
Thanks, I think...lol. I don't whether to be comforted or freaked out by your comment judging from your friend's reaction. I have achieved this level of being fit for mostly me but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't doing it to appease my DH by still being desirable and attractive in his eyes. The good thing is we haven't just met, obviously two decades and a couple of kids together has to count for something.


EagleRiverDee
08-04-2011, 09:39 PM
Sorry to freak you out! The good thing is that there are a lot of guys that are different than that, and you just have to seek one out that places emphasis on the same values you do. You can't really pigeon hole men, it'd be like saying all women are the same when obviously we're not.

JessLess
08-04-2011, 10:10 PM
Seriously, you should talk to him about it. What other men think doesn't matter. Your relationship is all that matters.

Saskey
08-05-2011, 11:48 PM
New member, and a guy here. I don't expect anyone to be a super model, but I do think that we should all be active. One of my concerns is health, I want to grow old with my wife and have an active lifestyle. We are both 43, I still want to go for bike rides and hikes in 20 or maybe even 30 years :)

I go in fits and spurts when it comes to exercise, right now I am on a pretty good exercise cycle. I feel so much better when I am going to the gym or biking or running or whatever. I try and stay fit for me, I figure use it or lose it.

Lovely
08-06-2011, 12:20 AM
Some men probably do care. Some men probably don't care.

Some women probably care. Some women probably don't care.

Only people that matter in your marriage are you and your husband. So, ask him.

luckymommy
08-06-2011, 12:41 AM
Fitmom, I just want to let you know that I turned 40 back in November and it really freaked me out. In fact, it still does. I go out of my way to look as young as possible so that my husband won't be interested in other women. On the other hand, he would never leave me for another....we have a life together! He respects and loves me. Does he look at other women? Yep. Does it drive me crazy. Yep. Am I going to fight the aging with everything I've got? Yep. The only regret I have is not getting my weight under control a long time ago. I wasted a good chunk of my youth yo-yoing and now, I sort of mourn that fact. I just wanted to chime in to let you know that you're not alone in your feelings.

ChubbyCheeks
08-06-2011, 01:07 AM
Well, my boyfriend is model hot[no joke] and turns a lot of heads, but he doesn't look. Even at my horrendous weight, it's like he likes it.
He could easily get tiny, preppy girls, but he says that's a turn off to him.

Whatever it is that you do, he's liking it. And he's been liking it for the past 20 years. I think getting lazy or letting yourself go would be the only thing that stops him from being attracted to you. But it's obviously love, and trust your judgement.
Do you think age would stop him from loving you?
Does it stop you from loving him?

124chicksinger
08-06-2011, 01:20 PM
Interesting question. About 30 years ago during a conversation with a male co-worker of mine about choosing the physicality of a mate, he stated that he'd prefer a cute face/not so great body over an outstanding body/ugly face, because the face is where it all happens. You stare into each other's eyes; you kiss; it draws you in initially. Conversely, we discussed that someone with a great personality and not model looks has their appearance enhanced by their personality and becomes even more attractive, while a gorgeous person with an awful personality could be perceived as less attractive. Of course, all of this is subjective. It depends on what a person is attracted to to begin with, and it continues with that person's affections. Your husband loves you, and most likely no matter what you weigh.

CrystalZ10
08-06-2011, 01:30 PM
I am FAR from being fit. My DH married me as a heavy girl and still loves me. If I lose weight, its going to be for me!
Outer beauty fades no matter how hard you try..men/women who trade in, will NEVER be truely happy because they are denying their own aging process.

redbutton
08-06-2011, 05:25 PM
Hi,
Well, I'm single, so I can't speak for myself but I will suggest you ask yourself a few questions, that I asked after reading your post.

We can have great parents, and they are our teachers growing up, sometimes, they may make some random comment that sticks with us.

It sounds like that comment from your dad stuck with you, and maybe over the years, other insecurities have started to build on it?

Ask yourself, is this really a fear that your husband has? That you're getting older and he's concerned, or is it that you're the one that's concerned and kind of projecting it on him?

With the amount of time you've been married you're already a leg up on so many couples that don't make it that far . . . shows he loves being with you.

Mention it to him, he's your hubby, ask for his support, does he even know you feel this way?

SophiaM
08-07-2011, 12:19 AM
Some men probably do care. Some men probably don't care.

Some women probably care. Some women probably don't care.

Only people that matter in your marriage are you and your husband. So, ask him.

Exactly! It's between you and him, who cares what other men think (as in your question about men in general and their view)?

fitmom
08-07-2011, 10:10 AM
Fitmom, I just want to let you know that I turned 40 back in November and it really freaked me out. In fact, it still does. I go out of my way to look as young as possible so that my husband won't be interested in other women. On the other hand, he would never leave me for another....we have a life together! He respects and loves me. Does he look at other women? Yep. Does it drive me crazy. Yep. Am I going to fight the aging with everything I've got? Yep. The only regret I have is not getting my weight under control a long time ago. I wasted a good chunk of my youth yo-yoing and now, I sort of mourn that fact. I just wanted to chime in to let you know that you're not alone in your feelings.


Of all the responses, I can so relate to yours. So, we're roughly a year apart then? Freak out doesn't even begin to cover it, lol. I've had some serious nightmares over it. I do the same thing as you, try to appear as youthful-looking as possible. He looks at other women and in all honesty, I've been known to look at a good-looking man or two at times. It used to drive me up a wall but at the end of the day, he falls asleep with his arms around me. But we do love and respect each other. Like I mentioned in my initial post, our um, sex life is better than ever. So which means to me that it's in my mind, it's not a real problem. We're closer than ever - in every way. I feel the same as you, that I wish I had taken my fitness seriously when I was younger. I, too, am going to fight growing old with every breath that I take. It's nice to know I'm not alone in feeling this way. Thanks for chiming in. :)

XLMuffnTop
08-09-2011, 04:54 PM
I just wanted to chime in from a slightly different perspective. My husband is a wee bit older than me. He's 39 I'm 27. I've had two babies, got an office job, quit smoking and got comfy. I don't know my weight when we met but I know it is quite a bit more than it was.

My husband is now in college. This means he's around 18-21 year old girls all day long!!! I use to be insecure about it and would get upset. One day I sort of joked that I was getting too old and fat and he was going to upgrade. He was honest that while they may be pretty to look at, once they open their mouths and start yapping, he lost any attraction. I laughed and it's been smooth since then.

Basically, while men are visual, it's not the end all be all. Many men don't want to have a wife that's too young because along with that comes babies, drama, baby-drama, and a whole host of other problems that most 40 year olds just don't want to deal with. Unless the dudes rich and can afford nannies and to send his wife away on vacations for a break, odds are it won't entirely be an "upgrade".

:) Relax. If you're still concerned, let him know and see what he says.

fitmom
08-09-2011, 05:01 PM
I just wanted to chime in from a slightly different perspective. My husband is a wee bit older than me. He's 39 I'm 27. I've had two babies, got an office job, quit smoking and got comfy. I don't know my weight when we met but I know it is quite a bit more than it was.

My husband is now in college. This means he's around 18-21 year old girls all day long!!! I use to be insecure about it and would get upset. One day I sort of joked that I was getting too old and fat and he was going to upgrade. He was honest that while they may be pretty to look at, once they open their mouths and start yapping, he lost any attraction. I laughed and it's been smooth since then.

Basically, while men are visual, it's not the end all be all. Many men don't want to have a wife that's too young because along with that comes babies, drama, baby-drama, and a whole host of other problems that most 40 year olds just don't want to deal with. Unless the dudes rich and can afford nannies and to send his wife away on vacations for a break, odds are it won't entirely be an "upgrade".

:) Relax. If you're still concerned, let him know and see what he says.


Your hubby is a lot like my hubby in that respect. If he sees a younger woman, he says they all appear like babies once they open their mouth b/c they lack life experience. Plus, he said that I'm the mother of his children so that definitely makes me extra-special. I feel the same way, if I was with someone a lot younger, I'd feel like I have to explain some things b/c we would not be on the same page, lol.

But you're still young (I can't even remember 27, lol) so you may feel a little um, differently when you're facing 40 like me. I hope I didn't insult you, didn't mean it that way. No one can know how you're going to react to something until they are personally faced with it, that's all I'm saying. In theory, I know it sounds silly but being three months and three days shy from 40 is kind of clouding my thinking on it. But that's me but thanks for your response just the same. :)

XLMuffnTop
08-09-2011, 05:15 PM
I'm not insulted, merely giving you the "younger wife" perspective. :) I really don't know where you're coming from and might never get there. I already have greying hair (among other things) and am OK with it. My stylist mentioned coloring and tried to yank one out. I balked at the idea! I'm a lot like my mother in that aspect. I remember when she hit 40, and 50 and going on 60. She just doesn't care! :)

Despite the 12 year difference, my husband and I are on the same page with most things. I'm slightly more mature than my age gives me credit for and he's slightly immature. I like to think the math balances out.

I do hope you're feeling better. 40 will come and you will rock it. Take care!

Sunshine87
08-09-2011, 07:48 PM
I do not think it is expected but I think that is because most people over 50 are overweight (neither of which you are). I have heard my dad speak to this several times (appearance as you get older). He has 12 years on you so it is different but as it relates to people who are 50+...most are overweight and many have stopped caring. The cheerleaders, the football players, and the jocks are all hidden behind bodies that are out of shape. The good news is that the best looking people are the ones who do maintain a healthy weight!
I would like commend you for maintaining a 117 lb body! I do not think I could do that at 24. You are a rock star and I am sure that your hubby appreciates your hot body and especially at 39!!!

fitmom
08-09-2011, 07:54 PM
I do not think it is expected but I think that is because most people over 50 are overweight (neither of which you are). I have heard my dad speak to this several times (appearance as you get older). He has 12 years on you so it is different but as it relates to people who are 50+...most are overweight and many have stopped caring. The cheerleaders, the football players, and the jocks are all hidden behind bodies that are out of shape. The good news is that the best looking people are the ones who do maintain a healthy weight!
I would like commend you for maintaining a 117 lb body! I do not think I could do that at 24. You are a rock star and I am sure that your hubby appreciates your hot body and especially at 39!!!


Geesh, a rock star, huh? Well, move over Pink! LOL. I will agree that some people upon hitting 50 let themselves go, unfortunately. Although there does seem to be a trend in middle-aged folks trying to turn back the clock and get into better physical shape so who really knows.

My hubby tells me all the time that I look great and all that but it doesn't make the number 40 anymore attractive to me, lol. I don't think it's necessarily about the scale at this point, it's how fit you are. It's funny because ten years ago, I would have said the scale was the end-all, be-all of my existence so I guess with age really does come wisdom...to a certain extent.

And congrats on the weight loss thus far, very impressive! :)

EZMONEY
08-09-2011, 08:15 PM
I think most of us reach an age where we really don't want to get any older!

Seems silly now that I am 57 but when I was 30 I thought I was old....now that my son is 30 I know that is still pretty young! But when you grow up with parents that married at 17 and 19 then at the time 30 did seem old....

it was my parents! :D

My wife is 51 and reminds me all the time....she is very much in shape and healthy but I have to say she doesn't take it as well as I do...

maybe it's because I drink more ;)

seriously, any guy that thinks a 40 year old woman, in shape or not, should look like a 18-21 year old in a bikini has already lost their mind.

Most guys are just happy to have a woman that wants them at that age and isn't too concerned anymore on looks...

Reminds me of the time my son was about 19. He was really upset and complaining about a haircut he thought was a too short...I laughed and said at least he still had hair...

he got :mad: and said "You don't have to worry pops...you already have a wife!"

fattymcfatty
08-09-2011, 08:16 PM
My DH (we've been married for 12 years now...I'm 33 and he just turned 36) has always had a thing for older women. I've always laughed at him and told him it will be so great once I hit about 40, cause then I'll finally be his hot ideal MILF! LOL!!!

I really think for him, he doesn't care about the age, it is how a woman presents herself. How much she takes time in her appearance, etc. You obviously are in great shape and have a man who is proud to be with you!

(I also find aging more appealing than the alternative)

Beach Patrol
08-10-2011, 03:00 PM
I just turned 48 last week. My husband turned 40 last April. Yes, I'm 8 years older.

Imagine my crazed thought pattern when *I* turned 40 and he was just 32. ACK! - but I made things easy on myself by jumping out of a plane (wiht a parachute of course!) WHEEEEE!!!!!!!! -that was fun!!! :D


We make jokes all the time, like the "I'm going to trade you in on two 20-year-olds" and other such guffaws. We're always poking & laughing at ourselves & each other.

But since I've gotten "old-older" and also have the extra weight that I didn't have when we met & fell in love (I was 29, he was 21!!!) ...I sometimes feel self-conscious about my body & the fat that I still have to lose. Most of the time I don't worry about it, because I'm pretty solid in our relationship, but I AM A NORMAL FEMALE! ...and sometimes I do get the "oh-my-god-what-if-he-wants-someone-else" b.s. and feel the need to clarify that he STILL LOVES ME. So a couple weeks ago I JOKINGLY told him "you have my permission to oogle other women, but only if they're super hot & not someone who would usually go for you - just don't fall in love, OK?" and he turned to me in all seriousness & said "I'm already in love" & kissed my hand. :love:

Sometimes we really do judge ourselves way too harshly. We are much more critical of ourselves than our spouses. My advice is to just try to keep YOUR thoughts out of HIS head. Because in all likelihood, what he's thinking is nowhere near what you think he's thinking. :hug:

fitmom
08-10-2011, 05:25 PM
I just turned 48 last week. My husband turned 40 last April. Yes, I'm 8 years older.

Imagine my crazed thought pattern when *I* turned 40 and he was just 32. ACK! - but I made things easy on myself by jumping out of a plane (wiht a parachute of course!) WHEEEEE!!!!!!!! -that was fun!!! :D


We make jokes all the time, like the "I'm going to trade you in on two 20-year-olds" and other such guffaws. We're always poking & laughing at ourselves & each other.

But since I've gotten "old-older" and also have the extra weight that I didn't have when we met & fell in love (I was 29, he was 21!!!) ...I sometimes feel self-conscious about my body & the fat that I still have to lose. Most of the time I don't worry about it, because I'm pretty solid in our relationship, but I AM A NORMAL FEMALE! ...and sometimes I do get the "oh-my-god-what-if-he-wants-someone-else" b.s. and feel the need to clarify that he STILL LOVES ME. So a couple weeks ago I JOKINGLY told him "you have my permission to oogle other women, but only if they're super hot & not someone who would usually go for you - just don't fall in love, OK?" and he turned to me in all seriousness & said "I'm already in love" & kissed my hand. :love:

Sometimes we really do judge ourselves way too harshly. We are much more critical of ourselves than our spouses. My advice is to just try to keep YOUR thoughts out of HIS head. Because in all likelihood, what he's thinking is nowhere near what you think he's thinking. :hug:

So this is totally normal to feel this way? Thank goodness, lol. Seriously though, your DH sounds like a sweetheart and not to mention a keeper. I never used to get um, get intimate with the lights on until recently because I was so ashamed of my frumpiness, lol. But along with getting back into shape, I was like, 'this is me and it's okay to not be perfect', you know?

Admittedly, most of the time I'm pretty self-confident (believe it or not!) with the way that I look now, it's just every now and again, that sliver of self-doubt sneaks up on me and whispers in my ear, lol.

He does repeatedly tell me that I actually look better than when he first met me (when we were both 19) - that I've aged really well and fared pretty well after birthing two kids too. I do believe him (for the most part) but getting older just stinks, lol.

BTW, I saw your photo that you uploaded on the celebrity thread and you don't even remotely look 48, at all. Thanks and happy belated birthday! :hug:

fitness4life
08-10-2011, 11:44 PM
Great topic and what a wonderful array of responses!

I am all over the place on this one. First, it IS possible for a 40 something woman to look pretty damn close to a 20 something in a bikini. It has to do with life long fitness and genetics. In some cases, it has to do with surgery.

Secondly, is looking like you're younger the motive? MAYBE, but I like to think my motive as a 41 year old is strength rather than appearance, independence over relying on a man.

Third, while I am elated when I get comments on how young or fit I look, I think I intimidate the older opposite sex. There aren't many in my area that could or even would want to keep up with my active lifestyle. Not that I want them to be interested in me, because I totally want someone who will keep up with me, but it's not like a lot of men have asked to spend time with me.

Which leads me to the 4th part - you're in love, life is good, 40 is just a number and you rock. Don't even sweat it. When you hit 41, you realize how unspecial 40 was. Especially when you're stronger or can do more active things than the year before.

Lunula
08-13-2011, 05:42 PM
I have to say that I'm guessing it would matter to a man at 40 if it mattered to him at 20 and at 30...and it'll matter to him at 50 and beyond.

I turned 40 in April and I'll be honest, it's been the toughest birthday I've ever had. Turning 30 was nothing, turning 35 was a little weird...39 was a little anxiety-inducing -- but 40 truly has been tough for me. My DH is 4 years younger than me and he laughs it off. We'll see how he feels in 4 years! :D

HOWEVER -- I am doing things to improve myself this year that I've not done in the past, and that's a good thing. Yeah, I'm getting a bit frightened about "growing old" like I've not been in the past -- so my reaction, as yours has been, is to get healthy & fit. I'm sick to death of feeling crappy about myself AND feeling crappy physically. I just won't do it for another decade!

It's my belief that over emphasis on the shallow surface part of people is a childish thing - I've always believed that. I don't think a 30-year-old man who would divorce his wife because she gained weight is going to be any different at any age. So yeah, I think it's just as important to "those men" at 40 as it is at 20.

That said, sounds like your husband truly loves you and isn't one of those men. My DH met me when I was about 150 lbs and 24 years old - and he's stuck with me all these years and up to my highest weight of 230. Do I think he was as attracted to me at 230 as he was at 150? No, I honestly don't -- but he's never said or done anything that made me feel like he was gonna leave me if I didn't lose weight. Now that I am losing weight - he is more supportive of me getting healthy than "getting sexy" (hah!) and that's why I love the guy. Sounds like your guy is like that, too!