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Age gap relationships

Sholay09Sholay09 NoobBirmingham, EnglandPosts: 100 The Mix Convert
Hi everyone I just wanted to know is it normal to have a boyfriend or girlfriend or a friend of a large age difference at any age because I have always felt this way and I still do now and I just wanted to know if it's normal or not because it should be because it's not like it's illegal or anything unless the person was in position of trust of someone under the age of 18?

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Depends on how you define "large". It becomes less unusual the older you get. My girlfriend's mother is married to her former university professor. She is in her mid forties and he is in his late 60s. I'd try to avoid large age differences when you are young (in your twenties), because there is often a strong difference in life experience and in what phases of life you are in (school and party, or graduated and full time job. Carefree and promiscuous or thinking about settling down).

    If you go for large gaps in age it might be helpful to be a bit introspective and ask yourself why is that. (Sometimes observed in girls who grew up with an absent father figure).
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    My ex (we broke up a long time ago and are still friends) is 19 and currently in a relationship with a woman who is 32. I thought it was weird at first, partly because she used to be one of my teachers at school, but actually thinking about it and talking to him, he's very mature for his age and to be honest she's sort of immature for hers. Not just that but they're actually really compatibile as a couple, I mean when he talks about her and her interests and their relationship together I can totally understand it, I really liked them both for similar reasons and I can imagine them being great together, despite the age difference!

    As long as you're sure your relationship is secure and happy and all that, I think the main thing to keep in mind is that people will be quite shocked at first. That doesn't mean they oppose your relationship or aren't supportive - it's just a stigma within our society. As long as it's all legal and you're both happy, I don't see what the problem is, and I'm sure that once your friends and family get used to the idea, they'll be fine with it too.
  • MikeMike Screen addict 🎮 LondonPosts: 2,916 Community Manager
    StrubbleS wrote: »
    Depends on how you define "large". It becomes less unusual the older you get. My girlfriend's mother is married to her former university professor. She is in her mid forties and he is in his late 60s. I'd try to avoid large age differences when you are young (in your twenties), because there is often a strong difference in life experience and in what phases of life you are in (school and party, or graduated and full time job. Carefree and promiscuous or thinking about settling down).

    If you go for large gaps in age it might be helpful to be a bit introspective and ask yourself why is that. (Sometimes observed in girls who grew up with an absent father figure).

    :yes:

    Just to add, I think it's fair to say that it would be unreasonable to disregard a relationship with someone purely because of an age gap. Like StrubbleS said, it's the implications of that which are worth considering (difference in interests, etc). We also have an article on age gaps which goes over the important bits and pieces. :)
    All behaviour is a need trying to be met.
  • MaisyMaisy The Mix convert CymruPosts: 295 Moderator
    As long as there's no legal issues, I think it's fine. There was an 18 year age gap between my parents and they were very much in love. I have a very close friend who is more than double my age. I may have 'issues' but I'm fine with it and so is my friend. We may technically be in different stages of life, but to us, that doesn't matter. We enjoy each other's company, so there's no issues there. I personally think it can be helpful at times to have a 'mentor' like figure in an older friend at times. It's all good as long as it's healthy :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi @Sholay09! Thanks for bringing your question to the forums!

    I agree with @Maisy in that as long as there are no legal issues, having a relationship (friendship or otherwise) with someone with whom you share an age difference is all right.

    ​As @StrubbleS[/USER] points out, and [USER="95844"]Mike reiterates, there are things to consider when you're with someone who's younger/older than you: culture shock (ie, they may have been brought up at a different time, and therefore have different 'norms' than yourself), varied life experiences (ie, how far along each of you are in your education/work life), even different expectations for the relationship the two fo you may have (ie, one of you is looking for something permanent while the other is wanting to explore where it goes). It's important to keep the lines of communication open, and to have conversations about why you are together, where you hope to take the relationship, etc.

    @abizoey offers an interesting observation -- there is a chance that people outside of your relationship may be shocked/taken aback by it. So, it is definitely important to have a clear understanding of your relationship with your partner and to be prepared for how others may react.
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