Age Gap Relationships- where there is a large Age Gap between Partners


Considering Age Gap Relationships

If you have met an older man and the relationship is deepening, you may be wondering whether to take the relationship deeper or whether to run away. When the man in a relationship is much older than the woman, some people cast aspersions on the psychological basis of the relationship. Others say love is blind and to carry on regardless. People reserve their greatest bile and disapproval for relationships, where the woman is much older than the man is, they think that he is just after her money, that she is paying him, or that he is looking for a mother figure and she is looking to hold onto her youth. However, relationships are more complex than the simplistic motives that others ascribe to the people involved in them would have you believe.

If you are involved in such a relationship, and are thinking that the relationship is deepening to a point where it may result in marriage, you may be thinking about the whole situation. Such relationships can and do work, and they are very successful, but like any relationship, they need work, communication, and thought. However, in a relationship with a big age gap between the partners, there is a lot more to think about. Much depends on your current ages.

When people in a relationship are fifteen and twenty, the age gap is huge, because the two people are at very different stages in their development, the fifteen year old is just moving into adolescence and the other is moving nearer to adulthood. However, in a relationship between the same two people aged twenty and twenty-five, the gap is not so huge, one is moving nearer to adulthood and one is already an adult. Taking the same two people at twenty-five and thirty, the age gap is negligible because both are at a similar stage in life. This shows how even a small age gap can make a great difference or no difference at all, depending on the stage of life that you have reached.

A larger age gap between a couple’s ages may show itself more in later life. A gap of twelve years between a couple, does not show itself very much when one partner is 28 and the other 40, but it may be a different matter when the same people are sixty and seventy-two. A larger age gap, say twenty years or more can make the differences between the two even more apparent. The younger partner may end up, whilst still feeling relatively young in outlook and life, caring for the older partner and unable perhaps to do the things that he, or she, still wants to do.

There are also other things to consider, the question of having children is very pertinent, when there is a large age gap between a couple. The older partner, may already have children and not want any more, or have decided that they do not want children. The younger partner may not be at the stage in life to make such a final and forever decision.

Perhaps a very grim thought to consider is that the younger partner in the relationship may outlive their partner by many years. It is a sobering thought that you could end up being a widow, or widower, for much longer than you were a wife or husband.

Just thinking that love is blind and that you should just blindly follow the emotion of the moment is foolhardy. Love alone cannot outweigh the bitterness, which could come later, if you do not honestly think through the implications of your actions. All relationships need more than just infatuation to sustain them. Mutual respect, friendship, and interests in common between the two partners are important in any relationship, but in a relationship, or marriage, where there is a big age gap between the partners, they are crucial to the relationship’s success. You also need rhinoceros’ hides to withstand the disapproval that others will heap on your collective heads. That said, there are many successful marriages, where there is a large age gap between husband and wife, or wife and husband. Entering such a marriage, fully aware of the implications and difficulties, caused by a big age gap between you, will save heartbreak in the end.

More by this Author

Comments 7 comments

Mercia Collins profile image

Mercia Collins 3 years ago from United Kingdom Author

sara, you could pick the most approachable family member and introduce him to that person, or just not tell your family his age.

sports2007 3 years ago

Mercia - thank you so much! I truly would like to believe that, however I also know that to some extent my family and friends (more my friends in my case) have my best interests at heart. Most of them are probably just looking out for me. But if I'm happy and healthy then that is all that should matter!

Mercia Collins profile image

Mercia Collins 3 years ago from United Kingdom Author

sports true friends will accept this man because he is your choice.

sports2007 3 years ago

When I was 24 I dated a 46 year old for almost 2 years and for the most part was quite happy (he ended up being too explosive and controlling so we just fell out of love). It took almost a year for me to tell my parents and sister since they are very judgmental on age, but we were actually able to do Thanksgiving dinner with him, his 21-year-old son, me, and my parents which was quite enjoyable. Now my parents tell me frequently (mostly mom) how glad they are I'm not dating older men anymore. I just turned 28 and am very happy and in love with my 52-year-old boyfriend. I'm happy, and wish I could shout it to the world and that my family and friends would be happy for me too. Yes, I know my friends are looking out for me, but I have to follow my heart over my head - it's how I'm built. I am not usually one of those who cares what others think, however I know that I will be judged harshly and questioned when I disclose this relationship to those who don't know about it. How do you guys deal with this kind of thing? I know it's easy for him, because I'm the younger one. I would love for my friends to be able to BBQ with us etc sometimes.

rafmldnd 4 years ago from San Salvador, El Salvador

Well Sara, the approvement of your family on the matter may be important, but so is your own happiness and it doesn´t go after what they think or like. It´s ok to respect their opinion in the matter as much as they respect your decisions since you are the only one (and your partner but not your family) who will carry with the consequences (good and bad) of such relationship, not them, when you feel alone they aren´t gonna be there for you in the way you would want, they have their own live to attend and so do you. A healthy advice: is it normal? no isn´t but anyway, who is normal in these days? no one, if you feel like doing it and still having doubts, it´s ok, follow what you feel and don´t feel pushed by another ones not involved in your relationship, you may end up having something good with him, or not, let it be be your (and your partner) decision only.

Mercia Collins profile image

Mercia Collins 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

thank-you for your comment sara1982uk.

sara1982uk 5 years ago

I'm 31 and I can see that men of my same age or older feel more attracted by younger women than me!Even though I don't think to be a "cougar" (I hate that word) I started having a look at an online dating website called since a friend of mine have suggested me and I'm actually in touch with a 24 years old guy!We are having such a fun together and even though the age gap he makes me feel younger than older men whom actually prefer 18s girls do!I've widely improved my self-awareness with him!!!I can say aloud now:I'm only 32, I'm not so old LOL!!!:)))Btw my resolutions for 2012 is not to find my truelove as I guess I've already found it, I just need to find the courage to introduce him to my family!!!I'm sure they will not accept that he is 7 years younger than me!How can I manage this?How can I face up with their ancient ideas?Any advice?xx

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.

    Click to Rate This Article