The term can also be used to distinguish attractions to adults from pederasty and pedophilia. In the field of sex offender rehabilitation, the term gynephilia is used to mean "attraction to adult women", in contrast with pedophilia, with the aim of therapy usually being to substitute pedophilic desires for gynophilic ones.
Magnus Hirschfeld, writing in the early 20th century, offered a three-fold age classification system for homosexual males:
- Ephebophiles, who prefer partners from ages 17-20
- Androphiles, who prefer men from age 20 to 50s
- Gerontophiles, who prefer old men.
The term androphilia has been useful in describing societies where pederasty was the norm, but where homosexual attraction to adult men was frowned upon.