"I had absolutely no expectations of meeting him." While these pairings can bring great joy, they often carry unique challenges, experts say.First among them is that the average life expectancy for men is now 73.6 years, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, compared to a life expectancy for women of 79.4 years.

the psychology of dating older men-9

He clearly states that, in addition to love, what he offers is stability for his 22-year-old fiancée and her two children.

"My primary goal is that she and her kids have a good life," he says.

Sometimes, people aren't even looking for the right partner online; it just happens.

When Tamara Latorre first started chatting online with her now-boyfriend, she says she paid no attention to age.

Tamara Latorre also has been on the receiving end of social disapproval.

When she and her boyfriend are at the movie theater, they often run into couples who knew him when he was married.

"Their marital relationship is really nil," says Rubin.

"He's been ill and needs her help." Despite the problems the age difference can bring, the gap often does have perks for the younger partner, including financial stability.

The Internet has been a rich meeting ground, since it lets people communicate without revealing their ages.

"It brings everybody into the marketplace of life," he says.

"I read him philosophy and he helps me figure out what the heck they're talking about." While no statistics are readily available, older man-younger woman couples have long existed and may be becoming more prevalent and more socially acceptable.