opinion

'It feels like there are 10 men you can date after 40. One of them is 'Daryl'.'

Like so many women, I’ve spent this week watching in horror as NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has been grilled over her love affair with utterly disgraced MP, and all-round numpty, Daryl Maguire.

I’ve heard people say ‘surely Gladys could have done better than him’…but I’d gently suggest those people aren’t high achieving straight women over 40.

Sadly, it seems your eligibility as a straight woman plummets the more impressive your LinkedIn profile becomes.

You see, the dating pool dries up rapidly when you become the ‘man’ your grandmother told you to marry. 


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Let me explain. The archaic advice used to be that men married ‘down’, while women married ‘up’.  So men married their secretaries and women married their bosses. 

But what happens when a straight woman becomes the boss? The depressing truth is that all too often, her closest companion is TV, popcorn and a nice Pinot Noir. Just ask Scandal’s Olivia Pope. 

OK, so Olivia ended up with the handsome US President, but a 40+ woman marrying the leader of the Free World is the stuff of Hollywood. 

Listen to the latest episode of Mamamia Out Loud where we discuss Gladys Berejiklian's relationship with Daryl Maguire. Post continues below. 

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In my experience you’re left with a sad list which looks something like this;

 The morbidly depressed, broke and cynical divorced man

 The strange man in IT who still lives with his mother

 The married man who says he has an understanding with his wife (doubtful)

 Peter Pan who will never settle down

 Peter Pan who decides he’s actually going to settle down… at 55… to make babies with a 25-year-old yoga instructor

 The married man who doesn’t have an understanding wife but says he hasn’t had sex since his last child was born (never true)

 The man who says he’s ‘practically separated’ - trust me, this man is still living at home and the ‘practical separation’ is very surprising news to his wife

 The ex boyfriend who says he still loves you but is still as hopeless as he was all those years ago

 Very old men who still think they’re in with a chance

 And ‘Daryl’

It’s tough enough finding a decent, available man for us mere mortals. I can only imagine what it’s like when you’re running a state.

Is it any wonder that poor Gladys found comfort in the arms of well… a Daryl? And if the Daryls of the world are the only option for straight women, do we take Shakespeare’s advice to ‘get thee to a nunnery’ and be done with it?

Kylie Johnson is a lover of cold climates and even colder Champagne. She’s been ‘over 40’ for longer than she cares to admit and works as a communications director in the ‘spinster capital’ of Australia, Canberra. She is mother to a teenage son and will happily confess she has far too many dresses. 


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