If you are dating someone older than you or younger than you, you will hear a lot of comments about the age gap in dating. Some will say that age is just a number, while others will say that it’s inappropriate to date someone who is old enough to be your father. But there will be a discussion on what age gap is acceptable and what age gap is too much, as well.
I will try to answer all of your questions about the age gap in dating in the following text and will list the signs that the age gap in your relationship could create problems. If you are currently involved with someone who is way over or under your age or considering it, you should read on to discover everything you need to know about this kind of relationships that will help you think things throw and realize the baggage that comes with dating someone older or younger than you.
Age gap relationships: how much is too much?
Some research shows that the success of a relationship drops with age gap, so the bigger is the age gap in a relationship, the more likely it’s to fail. Even though it’s often said that age is just a number, scientist seems to disagree. Because a lot of things can influence the success of a relationship, and even if there’s mutual love, trust, and respect, there are age gap relationship problems.
Research shows that there is a 95% chance of break up with the couples who have a gap of 20 years between them, while the most successful age gap is that of 3-5 years which still has an 18% more chance of break up than the relationship of a couple who is the same age. In the relationships where the age difference is 10 years, there is a 39% chance of break up.
What is an acceptable age gap in dating?
So what age gap is acceptable? Statistics show that women often marry older men, and on average, that gap is two years. A lot of people will agree that the age gap of 10 years if acceptable, but anything above that is simply pushing it too far. Still, according to research, it’s safe to assume that only 3-5 years of age gap has a chance of succeeding in a relationship.
Whatever the age gap is, it often creates problems that you usually would not have had in a relationship with someone your age. This is because you and your older or younger partner have been living at different times, which caused you to be raised differently and have a different view on life.
I was in a long relationship with a 16 years older man, and now I am married to a man my age. I can’t tell you how much I was delighted to be around someone who gets me and thinks the same way I do when I finally met my future husband. What the previous experience has taught me is that age definitely matters, no matter how much you would wish that it didn’t.
Do age gap relationships work?
So, do age gap relationships work? Unfortunately, most of the time, no, they simply can’t work. Trust me, age matters; even if you really try your best to ignore the age difference and pretend like it’s not affecting your relationship, it’s still something that will hang above your heads like a dark cloud.
Do you want to know why age gap relationships don’t work? There is a huge difference in the way you were raised and in the way you think about things, your goals in life, and where you are at the moment. An important factor no to be ignored is experience as well. If you love someone for the first time, but he has already loved a lot of women before you, the difference in experience will make a difference in how you love someone as well. For example, if your partner is much older than you and he is your first big love, while he has been married before and even had a couple of serious relationships as well, he won’t be able to reciprocate the love you are feeling.
6 Signs That The Age Gap in Your Relationship is Problematic
The age gap in dating doesn’t come without a price. Age difference matters because it defines where you are at the moment and what are your goals for the future. Those goals usually don’t match your partners when there is a big age difference between you two. Read on to discover more about the age gap relationship problems.
Here are the 7 signs that the age gap between you and your partner might be a problem
1. Disapproval of family and society
Age gap in dating is a popular topic for gossip, so don’t be surprised when your relationship becomes a hot topic for all family gatherings. There will be a lot of rumors, criticism, and questions about your relationship. If you are in a relationship with an older man, there will definitely be gossip that you are a gold digger and he is your sugar daddy. And if you are dating a much younger person, they will think it’s your mid-life crisis.
Your family will get questioned about your upbringing, and you will have to face your family’s disapproval. Lack of support from the family is a typical thing when it comes to relationships with a big age gap.
2. Compatibility issues
The bigger the age difference between you two is, the higher are the chances that you will have to face compatibility issues. You come from two different generations which grew up at different times, and that doesn’t come without consequences. You most likely have different mindsets, and you will not agree on many things.
Even if you are deeply in love with this person, you have to understand that you might not be compatible enough due to your different views on life. You are in different stages in life which are causing you to have different goals in life. You have to consider the fact that you two probably won’t grow old together. It could happen that you are the peak of your career while your partner is ready to retire. You will think differently, and your interests in life won’t match, as well as your needs.
An important factor in a successful relationship is having common goals, and they apply to all areas of life, including marriage, parenthood, career, and ambitions.
3. The matter of children
If you want to be with someone who is significantly older than you, it is very likely that he already has children from a previous marriage. If that is so, are you ready to become a stepparent? In this case, you are not getting involved just with a man but also with his children, and that is a very responsible task. Are you ready for such a responsibility? What if his children are close to your age? This can be a very uncomfortable situation.
And does he want more children? What if he already has children and you don’t but wish to have them in the future? This will particularly cause a problem in this case when he is much older than you because he might not want to have children at such age, or by the time you will want kids, he will already be a grandfather.
4. The matter of money
In a relationship where one partner is older than the other, that partner will often have an established career and be more financially stable or even own property. This will cause gossip that you are a gold digger, and he is your sugar daddy, but the gossip is not the only problem you have to face when there is a huge difference in how much money you make.
Your partner, who has an established career, will probably have to spend many hours at the office, and you will not always be able to understand that he doesn’t have enough time to spend it with you. And as I mentioned before, it could happen that you are at the peak of your career while he has to retire, which puts you in different stages at life, which creates problems in a relationship.
5. You are not going to grow old together
While you are dating, you won’t notice much difference in the way you look, but as time goes by, the older partner will age faster, and the difference between how you look will become more and more noticeable. Be ready for questions like is that your father or are you his mother.
And what comes with aging are illnesses. Are you ready to take care of your partner when he becomes sick while you are in your best years?
6. Experience matters
The older person has more experience than the younger one, and this might not seem like a big deal now, but trust me, you will start noticing the problems that come with different experiences, even if only when you break up and find someone your age.
Age is not just a number but a big period of time during which a lot of things happened and thought a person to behave a certain way, and the older the person gets harder it will be for them to change or adapt to new circumstances.
Can you still make your age gap relationship work?
As a rule, age gap relationships usually don’t work. However, every rule has the exception that proves it. So there is a chance that your age gap relationship could work, but only if you two are very understanding of each other and tolerate the flaws that age difference carries.
Intelligent and reasonable people who know how to communicate will always find ways to solve their problems and make things work. But if you notice some of the problems I mentioned and think about whether you are ready to deal with them, you will decide by yourself.
However, if you are scared by these possible problems and don’t think you are ready for all that, it’s time to break up gracefully before it’s too late for a clean break up.