You likely see it all the time: older men dating younger women.

Some say it’s the result of women being more mature, always needing someone a number of years their senior to really connect. Others say it’s all about the money—he gets the trophy wife; she gets the dough.

But what about the men who date older women? Or who’d like to? All stereotypes aside, it’s important you learn the dos and don’ts of dating cougars before going for it.

1. Make sure you’re up for the challenge. Older women have probably dealt with their fair share of wishy washy men, and their patience may run thin. They know what they want in a date, what they want in the bedroom and what they want in a partner. Can you be confident enough to keep up? If you’re masculinity is easily offended by a woman’s assertiveness, cougar town just isn’t for you.

2. Don’t call her a cougar, a sugar momma or anything else. Many women find such terms demeaning, as if they’re nothing more than your prized, older possession. Many women are looking for adventure, which is why they may be interested in your youthfulness, but only if you can be respectful like a grown-ass man.

3. Be adventurous. She would have phoned up her ex-husband if she was looking to watch a movie every night at 8 pm sharp. She wants to dress up, go out and cook together while listening to eclectic tunes. Keep her on her toes by coming up with weekend getaways or new sex positions to try out when you do stay in.

4. Don’t mention the age gap. Bringing attention to the fact that you don’t think age matters only tells her that you do, in fact, think age matters. Focus on what attracted you to her from day one, and let her know that you see her for who she is on the inside. Compliment her beauty, but don’t say things like, “for your age.” If she brings up the age thing, brush it off. She’s probably fishing for your insecurities on the subject matter.

5. Step it up. All those extra years she has on you means she knows a thing or two more than you. Don’t shrug your shoulders when she asks if you’re a fan of Gaudí’s work. Figure it out. Engage. It’s okay to be humble and less experienced, but be open to learning and go out of your way to immerse yourself in her interests, too.

Photo: Getty Images/Bob Thomas