age gap relationship

You’ve seen them before; those couples who are holding hands, laughing together, and look like they are a significant age generation apart from each other. Have you wondered how two people could possibly be happy in an age gap relationship? If so, you are not alone.  There are plenty of sceptics who are not shy about voicing their (often negative) opinions of pairings between older women and younger men, or, younger women and older men.

You might think that you will never date someone who can’t relate to who you are and how you were raised, but always remember to never say never. There are some very good reasons why you should consider being involved in an age gap relationship. For one, the person who you are with could teach you things that you never would have learned if you hadn’t met. Another benefit to being in this situation is that you will do a lot of self-analysis and determine what is truly right for you.

Here are some things to consider when you are debating whether or not that person who you’re attracted to could be someone you can have a successful age gap relationship with.

Physical attraction

If you are not attracted to the person who you’re with, then the relationship will have a slim chance of working out. So, when you actually ARE attracted to someone, you should consider that maybe it’s a sign from the universe to give things a chance. Mutual attraction is an even better sign. When you feel drawn to someone it is for a reason. Just be sure that the attraction you feel is because you genuinely want to get to know the person. Superficial attraction rarely leads to anything meaningful.

It is sometimes difficult to explain attraction to your friends and family. The appeal you see in an older person might not be shared by your friends. There are some things you need to keep in mind when you’re with a man who is significantly older than you. Your older man might experience erectile dysfunction and andropause (also known as male menopause) at times when you are in your prime. And, in addition to dealing with your loved ones sharing their viewpoints, you might start to doubt whether or not you are “normal” for having feelings for an older person.

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Criticism could also be directed towards you for choosing to be with a younger mate. People who are important to you might assume that you are pursuing a younger person to boost your ego. No matter how many times you try to explain that you genuinely care about your younger partner, your loved ones might never take the relationship seriously. When the people in your life dismiss your union, you can point out to them the many things that you and your significant other have in common.

Common interests

Two people don’t need to be born within the same decade in order to share common interests and goals. If you reflect on your schooldays, you can probably remember some of your classmates who were born the same year that you were but you didn’t have much else in common with them. It’s the same with some relationships. Some couples who are close in age to each other have difficulties relating to each other.

If a man happens to be a vegetarian who is also interested in stamp collecting and he meets and falls in love with a woman who is 15 years younger than him who is also keen to live a vegetarian lifestyle and collect stamps, then the age gap should not be a reason for people sharing common interests to avoid each other.

Yes, opposites do attract, but a couple who argues every day because of the differences between them will not be a happy couple for long. Is it worth it to be with someone who is a generation apart from you? It can be very worth it, but only if mutual respect is there. The age difference might bring fresh perspective to you both. You might find yourself mentally calculating how old your partner was when you achieved some of the milestones in your life, but be careful about doing that. Comparing what your partner was doing in his life at the time that you graduated from high school might cause you to feel that you two are too far apart. You can’t change yours or your partner’s history. Just accept your ages and focus on the milestones that you are achieving together.

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How attached are you to the people who are in your life? Would you be emotionally, spiritually, or financially devastated if your loved ones disapproved of your relationships? If so, you need to reconsider getting involved with someone whose age or status in life would be upsetting to the people who are most important to you.

Relationships that differ in any way from societal norms require independent thinkers who are strong enough to stand up for what they want. Otherwise, the union will be fragile and has no chance of survival. You shouldn’t have to make any apologies for liking who you like. So long as you and your partner are over 18 years of age, you are free to embark on a relationship.

Both of you should be ready to deal with stares, gossip, raised eyebrows, and scorn from people who don’t understand why you choose to be together. Can you deal with the rude questions and untrue assumptions that people are making about you two? If not, then you may need to rethink whether you are strong enough to handle being in a relationship that is different from the norm.

Future plans

Age might be nothing but a number to some, but your ages should be considered if either of you wants to become parents. Women of course have to deal with menopause preventing them from having babies. Because menopause tends to happen for women between the ages of 45 to 55, a couple needs to consider this if they want to conceive. If one of you wants to have a family together and the other person doesn’t, then you need to discuss that right away. These issues in age gap relationship need to be discussed as soon as possible because even though your hearts may be as one, your hormones and biological clocks are different.

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Some couples in age gap relationship such as filmmaker Samantha “Sam” Taylor-Johnson and her actor husband, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, decided to try having children together very quickly after their relationship began. Sam is 23 years older than her husband and she already had two children from a previous marriage before beginning the relationship when Aaron was 18 years old. The Taylor-Johnsons have said in interviews that they decided to try having children soon into the relationship because age affects a woman’s fertility. The couple now have two daughters together in addition to Sam’s two daughters from her first marriage.

Building a family worked out well for the Taylor-Johnsons and it could work out for your age-gap relationship as well, but you need to be wise about it and recognize that age, fertility, and health are related. You will need to make time-lined decisions together fairly quickly.  Can your partner handle being a parent within the next year? You need to talk about this as soon as possible because time is of the essence. It is best to work to make the relationship as strong as possible to prepare yourselves for changes.

The next time that you see a couple with an obvious age gap, don’t assume that the union is a May-December romance that doesn’t stand a chance. Sometimes, a situation that looks “scandalous” and “strange” to outsiders feels perfectly normal and right for people inside the pairing. Never assume that the person who you eventually fall in love with will be the same age as you. You can’t control your birth date, and neither can your mate. When you accept each other and allow your love to grow, you might find that the age difference is a trivial reason to prevent being together.

Image: flickr

Akua is a Canadian born and raised girl with Caribbean roots. She is a journalist, actress, music teacher, performer, owner and marketer of 3 worldwide dating websites, as well as an independent Pure Romance business owner selling passion products for singles and couples.

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