Calling a woman a cougar is an insult. I'm a WHIP & proud of it
Women who date younger men are not predators, writes Bambina Olivares Wise
I never used to get the appeal of younger men - until I started dating them. I'm not sure they consciously sought out an older woman; the combination of Asian genes and a petite frame have conspired to making me look younger than my age. But none of the younger men I dated were discouraged that I was older than I looked. If anything, my being a woman in her 40s seems to have turned them on even more.
When friends would point out that I was venturing into cougar territory, I would protest. "I don't hunt. I am the hunted."
Calling a woman a cougar is unfair and derogatory. It implies a predatory relationship
In fact, calling a woman a cougar is unfair and derogatory. It implies a predatory relationship in which the woman stalks her prey while the young man she sets her sights on is the hapless victim, powerless once trapped.
I never once pounced first in the dating jungle. Instead, the young swains always made the first move, cocky Latino lads who led me to the dance floor, confident Wall Street types who took me to Balthazar and The Modern, bold entrepreneurs who hoped to entice me to their hotel rooms for a nightcap. Some boys I kissed, some I pushed away, some I flirted with.
It would appear, based on their ardour, that I was indeed a MILF - a term just as insulting as cougar, which portrays us as nothing more than lust objects for hormone-addled boys.
So you can say merci beaucoup to Brigitte Macron for killing the cliche of the cougar and the crassness of the MILF and heralding the age of the WHIP - a Woman who is Hot, Intelligent and in the Prime of her life.
After all, Emmanuel Macron's relentless pursuit of the woman 24 years his senior has been documented to death. Now 64, Brigitte still looks damn good. And it's pretty obvious that her 39-year-old husband still has the hots for her.
WHIPs - coined by British writer Bibi Lynch - perfectly encapsulates the woman of a certain age who knows who she is and who she wants, and this confidence is very attractive and very sexy.
Of course a WHIP doesn't need younger men to validate her hotness, but there's no reason why she shouldn't have as much fun with them as she wants. For as long as she wants.
• This article was originally published in The Times.