Age gap relationships.

Sarah - posted on 02/07/2010 ( 23 moms have responded )

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Does age really matter when it comes to falling in love?
There is 11 years difference between me and my husband. I'm 28 and he will be 40 this year.
I met him when i was nearly 18.
We've been married 3 years this August.

There's no denying that occasionally age plays a part in some of our problems, but we're happy and in love.

So does age matter?
Does it make a difference if the man or the woman is the oldest?

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Krista - posted on 12/12/2011

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I don't think that age is an issue when it comes to falling in love.

However...the physical aspect of it can't be entirely ignored.

No matter how fit you keep yourself, age DOES catch up with you eventually. So let's say that there was as big an age difference between me and my husband as there is between Shyla and her husband.

At age 51, my husband would likely still be pretty energetic and on-the-go, and able to keep up with the baby.

But what about 30 years from now? At 66, I'd finally be retired. I want to travel, and take classes, and keep active and busy. The kids will be out of the house, and I want to take advantage of that freedom. But if my husband is 81...will he want to travel? Will he be able to keep up? Will he even be able to make love anymore? Will he require medical care?

My own mom married a man 10 years older than her. She's 63 and he's 73, and she's already starting to notice a difference in their energy levels. She's go-go-go, and he's starting to slow down. And I know that sometimes she feels a bit resentful.

I'm not saying that age is necessarily an impediment to love...but it IS worthwhile to ask yourself, "When I'm 60, what might it be like to be married to someone 10 (15, 20, 25) years older?)" and just mentally prepare yourself for those possibilities.

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Meredith - posted on 12/12/2011

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I dont believe it does at all, my husband and I have a 7 year age difference.

Michelle - posted on 02/15/2010

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Krista that's hilarious. I love that rule, I'm gonna remember it and tell my best friend that so she can tell her mom lol

Krista - posted on 02/14/2010

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Ah well...there are exceptions to every rule. :) That's the nice thing about being together for awhile, though -- the older you get, the less the age difference matters.

[deleted account]

YIKES Krista! My husband barely escapes the creep factor going by your rule! In fact going by your rule, my husband would definitly have been considered a creep when we first started dating!

Jason - 35
Me - 25 (26 in March)
To not be considered "creepy" my age would have to be 24.5. Phew! We made it!

Krista - posted on 02/14/2010

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Rule of thumb when dating someone younger: take your age, divide it in two, and add 7. That's the youngest person you can date without looking creepy.*

*Obviously, this doesn't apply if you are Demi Moore, because...well...you're Demi Moore and the laws of mortals do not apply to you.

Rosie - posted on 02/14/2010

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i think it matters with the people involved if there are going to be problems or not. i started dating my husband when i was 23 and he was 18. at that point in my life i had already had a child with someone else (he bailed on us) and was more mature than others my age. i had given up on the idea of dating younger men because my past dictated that younger men were immature and selfish (hence the ex who was a little younger than me and left while i was pregnant). he persued me relentlessly, and we became close friends, but i still couldn't imagine myself with him, not just because of the age factor, but he seemed to good to be true. after about 4 months i realized that i was being stupid, and needed someone like him in my life. he didn't care that i already had a child, i think his experience growing up helped in that area. his mother already had him at age 16, and he knew what it was like for single mothers. he wasn't into partying or anything like most younger men that i knew, i had been there already and i didn't need to go back to that. he compliments me and i compliment him. i do find it funny when i talk about something while growing up in the 80's and he's like what's that? we learn from each other. he is different than me in most everyway. he was republican, i lean more to the democratic side, he's an atheist i was raised christian, he likes heavy metal, goth type things, heavy metal makes me want to scream. but the way our relationship is and the way we have mutual respect for each other makes it so we learn from each other and balance each other out.

now is till don't like heavy metal, but there are some songs that i do like that i would've never heard before i met him, i've leaned him more on the democratic views of things, he's made me like history alot more than i ever thought i would, and i don't feel like we forced a change on each other, i think we've learned from each other.

i do find it disturbing when someone goes for someone in highschool that is much older, but that has more to do with the whole pedofilia, statutory rape aspect. and people who are very apart in age will have to deal with the older one getting older and possibly dying way before the other one does, but i think they would have common sense enough to know that that is going to happen, and if they are willing to take that risk than by all means who am i to say they can't love someone.

ME - posted on 02/12/2010

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My hubby is 5 years younger than me...I am aware that he is slightly less mature than I am, but only once in a while...we had very different upbringings, and we complement eachother very well because of it...

?? - posted on 02/11/2010

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I'm 26, Devon is 21. I was 24 and he was 19 when we started dating. I didn't want to date him cause he was so young. I was already in the process of looking into what it would take for me to have a baby on my own, settle down and be a family by myself and he said NO KIDS NO WAY NEVER.

I ended up pregnant and he's more responsible, a better dad and 'husband' than all but 2 of my friends partners - and those 2 he's equal / better, not worse than their partners.

There are some situations where I think "ok your age is showing" and there's time's where I have to keep in mind that he is only 21. But there are even more situations and times where I completely forget that he's only 21.

I think it completely depends on the individual and the relationship as to whether an age gap would be a problem or just not. If there's an immaturity factor, it doesn't matter whether the age gap is 1 year or 20 years - an immature person, is an immature person.

I know some 19-25 year old's that are in relationships with people who are 19-25 years old too, and their relationships are more commited, respectful, and will last longer than some of the older couples I know.

So nope, I don't think age gaps, or age in general is an issue, unless it's made into an issue or there is an underlying issue that is given the 'it's their age' excuse.

Kerry - posted on 02/11/2010

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there is a 10 year gap between me and ma partner i was 18 and he was 28 when we met we have bin 2 getha 4 just a lil over 2 years and have a 9 month old baby boy. like some 1 else commented on when questions come up on t.v and there anything 2 do with years below 89 i always say havent a clue wasnt born and his face drops.lol my friends take the mick some times when he was going up 2 secondary school i was born .lol

Heather - posted on 02/09/2010

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I have no issues with it...I'm 34 and my soon to be hubby is 25...I always forget that he is so much younger than me :) We have so much fun together and he keeps me feeling young! The only downfall is the term "cougar" I hate that term

Lindsay - posted on 02/08/2010

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I really think it depends on the people. I had a good friend that started dating a 35 yr old when she was 18. Of course we were all in shock at first but they were a good fit and have been married for about 6 years now and are going strong.

I have an aunt who is in her 50s. She's been divorced for just over 5 years and has recently started dating again. She went out with a man the same age as her and came home talking about how "old" he seemed. She's one that really likes to have a good time and go out with friends and travel. He seems to be content sitting at home, watching TV every night. They are the same age but want different things. It wouldn't suprise me at all if she found a man younger than her because she doesn't "act her age".

Josh is 3 years older than me and it seems like a perfect fit, for us. But if we weren't together, I could see myself going for someone older than me but definately not younger.

What works for some, won't work for others. And as long as people are finding a good fit for them, it's not an issue for me! =)

Sarah - posted on 02/08/2010

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I completely agree with those who have said that the older you get, the less it matters.
When Pete and I first got together, it seemed like the age difference was a big talking point (to other people that is) These days, it doesn't really seem to bother people so much.

It's funny, now i'm nearly the age that Pete was when we met, I think there's no way i could go out with a 17/18yr old! Perhaps that's because i've always gone for the older man (only been out with one lad my own age, when we were at school) or maybe it's because i have 2 kids now, and i couldn't imagine an 18yr old taking that on! lol

It is weird when Pete says "oh i was at this gig in '85" and i'm like, "hmmm yeah i was 4!!" Mostly tho, i don't really notice he's older. There was a time when he got a bit annoyed with me going out so often. We had to compromise tho, by him realising that i was at an age to still want to go out and party, and by me spending time with him and not always going out.

I think since having the kids, we both feel about 90 anyway! haha :)

Ez - posted on 02/07/2010

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I think the older you are, the less it matters. Until one party gets REALLY old and then it starts to matter again lol. I met my first serious boyfriend at 16 - he was 22. That is just wrong, and evidently I knew it because I kept him a secret from my family! Then I was in another relationship just before I turned 18, and my boyfriend was 25. At the time I pretended the age gap didn't matter, but it definitely did. I lost contact with my friends because they were all going out partying and he was happier drinking at the local with his mates. We were in entirely different stages of life. I still had a few more months of high school to go, and he had already finished his university degree, been engaged, bailed from the engagement, and moved interstate. That's a lot of life experience that I just didn't have.
If I met someone 7 years older than me now (I'm 28) though it would be a total non-issue. I must say I can't imagine myself with a man 7 years younger than me, but in saying that I just went to one of my closest friends' weddings last week and the wife is 6 years older. So obviously what works for one doesn't necessarily work for the other. And good for them!

Michelle - posted on 02/07/2010

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While it depends mostly on the people themselves I think a big part of it has to do with how old they are when they meet. Like Jocelyn said, an 18 year old with a 41 year old raises some (well.... all) eyebrows.



But my mom and my step dad are 16 years apart. She is 39 and he is 55. They met 12 years ago, when my mom was 27. Some might say that's still too young to be with a 43 year old, but my mom grew up when she had me at 16, so it's a little different. I think that my parent's have very little trouble dealing with the age difference, but their troubles lie in the fact that my step dad is disabled, so again, it's a little different....



Of course, I personally wouldn't know-- my fiance and I are only five weeks apart lol, it's the smallest age difference in a couple we've ever run across. My friend (21) just went on a blind date that her MOM set up, got there, and found out he was 27!!! She just said sorry, I'm not comfortable with the age difference, and left. I think the older you are, the less 5 years matters.



I do think that it matters who is older-- if the man is younger I think there is a much smaller chance for the relationship. I don't think it's sexist to say this-- it's a fact that men don't "mature" or "grow up" as quickly as women do. For the most part, women are ready for stability, quiet nights at home, and calm, rational discussions earlier in life. Among other things, I think this is what makes it so much easier to be in relationship with an age difference if the man is the one who is older.



Overall, I think that the younger one of them is the bigger the yuck factor but every relationship should be looked at separately because every person is different.

Chantel - posted on 02/07/2010

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I think it depends on the people. And as wrong as it is I think it's more acceptable in general that the man is older than the woman. That being said, my uncle and aunt have been together for more than twenty years. She's in her early seventies and my uncle will be fifty this year. They have no children together but she has children that are older than him. They are a very happy couple and the age gap is just recently becoming more noticable. She's always seemed younger than her age while he has seemed older. So yes absolutely it can work but what happens to this great love that they have when she dies of old age and he's left alone with no one to grow old with?
There are only two years between my partner and I (he's older) and that seems to be working for us;)

Jocelyn - posted on 02/07/2010

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You know I'd like to say that is doesn't matter. But one of my friends (she's 21) is in a relationship (and having a baby) with a man who is 44. I think that that is just so wrong. They met when she was 18. So he would have been 41. I have to think just what type of middle age man actually wants to have a relationship with an 18 year old girl. I just don't get it. Sure I can understand flings and one night stands with someone a lot older ( I was 18 and hooked up with a 40 yr old) but I couldn't imagine anything serious. For me its the fact that when I would be 40, they would be 60 something, and when I'm 60 they could be dead! (from old age!)
My friend seems to be making it work tho, so it definitely doesn't matter to her. The more power to them if they stay together.
I can see how the huge age factor would be difficult tho, there is 2 generations between them, even one generation I could see being a problem. My best friend is engaged and there is an 11 year difference between them. She's told me that it does pose problems, for instance baby names: his generation likes Britney and names like that. Our generation ARE the Britney's.
As for does it matter if it's the man or woman whose older: I do think that relationships where the man is older have a better shot of lasting. Younger women would be able to match the older man's maturity level. I look at my hubby (who is 25) and I just cannot fathom him (with his level of maturity) being in a relationship with a woman who is 45. But again, there are always exceptions. So if a relationship is working (any relationship) then props to them!

Johnny - posted on 02/07/2010

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I think that it entirely depends on the 2 people involved. Excluding cases where one person is of age and the other is under-age of course.

I always think of my uncle and his girlfriend. When they started dating she was 26 and he was 54. More than twice her age! But she was definitely the mature one. He has always been a playboy, never settled down, never grew up, and has a very limited understanding of how the world really works. He has never experienced any real hardship and thus has sort of remained a bit emotionally stunted. She was orphaned when her parents died in a car accident when she was 13. From then on she virtually took care of herself. She is a genius, started university when she was 16 an had her PhD. when she was 23. When they started dating she'd already been teaching college for 3 year. He grew up in that relationship, and he allowed her to have a bit more fun and learn to take it easy. When she took a prestigious teaching assignment in Europe, they decided to end the relationship. But for me they are the perfect example of why every relationship should only be assessed on its own merits, not by some pre-determined standard.

Charlie - posted on 02/07/2010

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No i ont think so as long as your at similar maturity levels and have the same interests and goals then why not !! its about finding the right person for you regaurdless of age .



Having said that i do not believe a 23 year old should date a 16 year old but an 18 year old could date a 25 year old , i dont think a a full grown adult man has any buisness being with a 16 year old at least not until she is old enough to make mature rational decisions which an 18 year old is more likely able to do.



Does that make sense ??

[deleted account]

Tough question-yes & no. With every relationsip, there is always a past history. When there is a signifiant age gap, past history can play a huge part. But at the same time, when a couple is on the same page and share teh same expectations, they can get past the age difference. Many times, it's the families of the couple that tend to have a problem.

[deleted account]

I don't think so. My husband and I are 9 years apart. We met when I was 20 and married when I was 21. It was basically love at first sight and there was no reason to carry on a long engagement. We've been married 5 years this June.



Sometimes the age gap really makes itself evident and takes us by surprise, in funny ways. When we first started dating, we were with a group of friends playing "Trivial Pursuit the 90's" (I was born in 84) So the question was from 1991 and I laughed and said, "I don't know I was in Kindergarten." Jason's eyes got big and said, "I was in 10th grade!" His friends starting messing with him saying, "So you were cruising in your car by the elementary school and your girlfriend was on the monkey bars!" I'm sure they said something worse than that!



So no, I don't think age matters. And I don't think it would make a difference if the woman was older either, but I don't have experience with that one other than being 1 year older than my high school boyfriend.

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