Honky Cracker's post and the comments that followed hit a bit of a hotspot with me.
I know that this is an unpopular point of view and it is going to sound all conservative and forbidding, but I think it is icky to date a teen when you are older than 21.
Yes, there are "old souls" and gentle mentors, but where do you draw the line? And when is it not powertripping (be honest)?
I think HC made a good choice. No matter how "mature" the teen seems, he/she is not going to have balanced perspective or make good relationship choices with a 20-something while his or her days are governed by recess and "spares".
I am, of course, biased, because my own past has informed this view. Around puberty,older men started looking at me and my friends in that particular way.
Which, in and of itself, is fine. But the sexual agony that grown men would profess to be suffering at the sight of teenage girls was baffling. I mean,you just got boobs and suddenly, you were being invited into the previously inaccessible adult context: it was a steep learning curve [sic] to say the least.
Some girls went from being llabelled an awkward kid one month and an 'inscrutable vixen' the next, but not much had changed inside. Suddenly, men endowed you with these crazy qualities that you could not possibly merit.
You'd try to master it, flex it, experiment with it, meanwhile leaking brutal suggestiveness all over the place because you were still a goofy kid, but with this new, apparently powerful quality that made adults take you seriously. But it was still unclear whether it owned you or vice versa.
It was downright gross when men my father's age would get that watery dreamy look on the subway when we were in our SCHOOL UNIFORMS. (gross because it is a cliche and because it was obvious we were teens).
It takes a while to understand your sexuality, is all I am saying. Maybe I was a late bloomer because of the whole private school scenario. But are our memories so short ? Go back and read your diary! It is not just about a gap in age. We're talking about teens! They are different from us.