Dear Bearded Confidant,

I am a mature homosexual who has mostly lived a phoney heterosexual life.  I know I am gay and always have been. I want to know how a mature man can find a lover who is younger without being scammed by hustlers out for a fucking sugar daddy.

Dear Flint,

Scam artists certainly hustle would-be sugar daddies, but I don't think there are so many out there that you should be paranoid.  There are many different types of homosexual relationships, and each comes with its own benefits and risks.  When an older man seeks out a younger man, there's no escaping a "mentor/protégé" dynamic.  If you truly don't want a protégé, you'll need to do a lot of screening.  The first question to ask is, "What do you do for a living?"  There are plenty of young men who, despite their youth, are successful and self-sufficient.  Keep in mind, however, that any young man who is interested in an older partner is looking for a "daddy" figure even if only to a small degree.  He'd be dating men his own age if it was a peer he was after.