Call us: Mon - Fri 8:30am - 7pm, Sat - Sun 9am - 5pm
Call local rate 0330 056 3171
Mon - Fri 8:30am - 7pm | Sat - Sun 9am - 5pm
Call local rate 0330 056 3171
Mon - Fri 8:30am - 7pm | Sat - Sun 9am - 5pm

Can women have trophy boyfriends?


Is it time to grab your trophy partner?

“Tell me,” asked Mrs Merton famously to the glamourous Debbie McGee about her well-known magician husband, “what was it that first attracted you to the millionaire Paul Daniels?”

The image of the not so stunning but very wealthy Paul Daniels flashed into everyone’s mind and the audience laughed. It’s a clever question that has stuck with me since then; every time a nubile young female is seen with an older man, the same thought goes through my mind.

Would these gorgeous very young women be hanging onto the arm of Silvio Berlusconi, Mel Gibson or Ronnie Wood – especially Ronnie Wood! – if these men lived hand-to-mouth? Would these men have the same appeal? The same charm?

I don’t think so.

Poor Mrs Berlusconi. As the wife of the most powerful man in Italy and a billionaire to boot, she has had enough. She is filing for divorce because she has been humiliated by her husband “consorting with minors”: lavishing attention on girls young enough to be his granddaughters. Who can blame her?

As for Mel Gibson: can’t he read? Doesn’t he know the track record of the gorgeous Oksana Grigorieva, that even The Times found interesting enough to sensationally relate in print?! How can he? Is he completely delusional? At his age?! Doesn’t he mind looking an utter fool in front of the entire world?

Finally, Ronnie Wood, is he too so self deluded that he really, really, really, believes that his wit and charm keep his blonde Russian bombshell hanging on to his every word? How can he? How could he? What was wrong with his beautiful wife of 23 years? How could he just throw her away – and for what?

But then, as a male friend said to me when we were discussing this subject at the gym recently:

“Do you think that those men really don’t know and that they even give a damn? They’re having a great time. And after that woman will be another and another and another. Til they die.”

Then he added: “What difference does it make if a 19-year old beautiful girl with big boobs hasn’t got brains? Why does that rich, successful man need brains from her? He’s got enough brains for them both.

“What he wants is a beautiful 19-year old girl by his side and after her will come another. He can afford it!”

He dismissed my thoughts in an instant. It was I realised that I’d been looking at the picture from a woman’s perspective, rather than a man’s.

This epiphany brought to mind a recent visit from a client who, at 62, was besotted by his 22-year-old red-haired girlfriend and wanted to divorce his wife of 35 years. I realised that my concern about his own future happiness, should his girlfriend later cut and run, was ill-founded. He wasn’t the least concerned. In fact he may well have simply enjoyed having him on his arm and – when she became tiresome – found another younger model to proffer gifts on.

Maybe it’s time for the ladies who have emerged from these broken relationships to go off and find their own toyboy – I’m certain that if the gorgeous Mrs Berlusconi wished she could find herself indulged by stunning young Italian men, whisking her off to her Tuscan palace on the back of their Vespas. I rarely see this in my experience though. Women prefer to invest in relationships rather than sexual conquests – and when I have seen female clients choosing a younger partner, it’s often been for long-term companionship rather than for arm-candy.

Mel, Silvio and especially Ronnie: you may be painted as fools in the newspapers – usually by female journalists – but you know what you are doing. You aren’t taken in by these delectable young dollies; you just want more fun.

Would women be better off if they were able to do the same?

The founder of Stowe Family Law, Marilyn Stowe is one of Britain’s best known family law solicitors and divorce lawyers. She retired from Stowe Family Law in 2017.

Contact us

As the UK's largest family law firm we understand that every case is personal.


  1. Is there such a thing as a Man-o-pause? | Marilyn Stowe Family Law and Divorce Blog says:

    […] the past I’ve written a post on the topic of men having trophy girlfriends and came to the conclusion they probably knew what they were doing (and lets face it, even if they […]

Leave a comment

Help & advice categories


Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up for advice on divorce and relationships from our lawyers, divorce coaches and relationship experts.

What type of information are you looking for?

Privacy Policy