Cougar (slang)

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Cougar is a slang term that refers to a woman who seeks sexual relations with considerably younger men.[1][2] ABC News states that these women pursue sexual relations with people more than eight years younger than they are,[1] while The New York Times states that the women are over the age of 40 and aggressively pursue sexual relations with men in their 20s or 30s.[2] However, the term can also refer to any female who has a male partner much younger than herself, regardless of age or age difference.[3][4]

The origin of the word cougar as a slang term is debated, but it is thought to have originated in Western Canada and first appeared in print on the Canadian dating website Cougardate.com.[5] It has also been stated to have "originated in Vancouver, British Columbia, as a put-down for older women who would go to bars and go home with whoever was left at the end of the night."[1]

The cougar concept has been used in television shows, advertising and film. The 2007 film Cougar Club was dedicated to the subject, and in spring 2009 TV Land aired a reality show called The Cougar. The 2009 sitcom Cougar Town originally explored the difficulty and stigma of many so-called "cougars". In The Graduate (1967) a middle-aged married mother pursues a much younger man (21 in the film). On the soap opera Days of Our Lives, character Eve Donovan is a cougar, repeatedly sleeping with the much younger JJ Deveraux.[6][7]

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