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    • Jo3y83
    • By Jo3y83 10th Jan 19, 1:47 PM
    • 123Posts
    • 242Thanks
    Jo3y83
    Age Gap Relationships
    • #1
    • 10th Jan 19, 1:47 PM
    Age Gap Relationships 10th Jan 19 at 1:47 PM
    My partner and I have been a couple for almost 2 years. We've known each other for around 10 years as we work for the same company and formed a firm friendship during those years. Since my marriage broke down and he was long-term separated we decided to give a relationship a try.
    I have no regrets about this but as there is a 16 year age gap between us (I'm almost 36 and he is 51). I've noticed there seems to be quite a bit of non-verbal and verbal judgement, which I've found a little hard to deal with. We often receive strange looks from an older generation and comments towards him, such as "you're punching above your weight". It can be quite upsetting.


    My parents have 13 years between them so I grew up not judging such relationships but I feel this is not the case for others.
    I have no children and he has a 20 year old son, who has completely accepted me and we've become mates.


    Has anyone else in an age gap relationship had similar findings? I want to find a way to care less about what people think and I feel a little alone in that respect.
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Page 2
    • Karenm0202
    • By Karenm0202 10th Jan 19, 3:02 PM
    • 4 Posts
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    Karenm0202
    I had 19 years with a partner 21 years older than me and accepted that we wouldn't retire together. It does get harder as you get older and the gap becomes more apparent. My partner died of cancer several years ago in his early 70s and luckily I was well enough to nurse him at home.
    I wish you years of happiness but remember to put things in place for when one of you is alone. Either of you could get ill or need care and the age gap has nothing to do with that.
    • Jo3y83
    • By Jo3y83 10th Jan 19, 3:17 PM
    • 123 Posts
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    Jo3y83
    I had 19 years with a partner 21 years older than me and accepted that we wouldn't retire together. It does get harder as you get older and the gap becomes more apparent. My partner died of cancer several years ago in his early 70s and luckily I was well enough to nurse him at home.
    I wish you years of happiness but remember to put things in place for when one of you is alone. Either of you could get ill or need care and the age gap has nothing to do with that.
    Originally posted by Karenm0202

    Thank you, Karen. Good advice!
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    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 10th Jan 19, 3:42 PM
    • 7,174 Posts
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    TBagpuss
    It's a bit daft to suggest that there are 'rules' (once both parties are over 16) for this kind of thing.

    A 35 may go out with anyone who they like and who likes them (subject, again, to legal limits). Telling people 'but the rule is...' isn't going to stop comments (which shouldn't happen because that's rude).
    Originally posted by ViolaLass
    not to mention that that particular 'rule' is very old fashioned, and only worked one way round - i.e. a woman could marry an older man, no the other way around.

    It was rooted in a historic period where a well-bred woman would aim to be married young, with a view to producing children, whereas a well-bred man wasn't expected to settle down so soon, and, if a member of the middle classes, would need time to establish himself in his professional life so he could afford to support a wife.

    So for instance, Mr Knightley (36) and Emma Woodhouse (21) in Jane Austen's 'Emma', are seen as a suitable couple!

    It's pretty much totally irrelevant these days.

    OP, I think all you can do is try to ignore any weird comments or looks, and if people do comment, feel free to 'return the awkward to sender' by responding with something such as "What an odd thing to say" or "Did you realise you said that out loud?"
    • dont_use_vistaprint
    • By dont_use_vistaprint 10th Jan 19, 4:15 PM
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    dont_use_vistaprint
    Its very common, guys are often much more immature than women even into their 30s and 40s, so a woman needs an older guy that's wise and knows how to take care of her, a man not a boy. And guys in their 40s and 50s often need women a bit younger for other reasons!

    Care less about what people think or say because you are confident you are with the right person for the right reasons, if they seem confused why, just spell it out to them
    Last edited by dont_use_vistaprint; 10-01-2019 at 4:19 PM.
    "It is not the critic who counts..." - Theodore Roosevelt
    • Jo3y83
    • By Jo3y83 10th Jan 19, 4:15 PM
    • 123 Posts
    • 242 Thanks
    Jo3y83
    not to mention that that particular 'rule' is very old fashioned, and only worked one way round - i.e. a woman could marry an older man, no the other way around.

    It was rooted in a historic period where a well-bred woman would aim to be married young, with a view to producing children, whereas a well-bred man wasn't expected to settle down so soon, and, if a member of the middle classes, would need time to establish himself in his professional life so he could afford to support a wife.

    So for instance, Mr Knightley (36) and Emma Woodhouse (21) in Jane Austen's 'Emma', are seen as a suitable couple!

    It's pretty much totally irrelevant these days.

    OP, I think all you can do is try to ignore any weird comments or looks, and if people do comment, feel free to 'return the awkward to sender' by responding with something such as "What an odd thing to say" or "Did you realise you said that out loud?"
    Originally posted by TBagpuss

    Your post made me smile - thank you Good advice!
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    • Jo3y83
    • By Jo3y83 10th Jan 19, 4:16 PM
    • 123 Posts
    • 242 Thanks
    Jo3y83
    Its very common, guys are often much more immature than women even into their 30s and 40s, so a woman needs an older guy that's wise and knows how to take care of her . And guys in their 40s and 50s often need women a bit younger for other reasons!

    Care less about what people think or say because you are confident you are with the right person for the right reasons, if they seem confused why spell it out to them
    Originally posted by dont_use_vistaprint

    Thank you - your words are very true
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    • onlyroz
    • By onlyroz 10th Jan 19, 4:18 PM
    • 15,524 Posts
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    onlyroz
    17 years between me and my husband, and I've never had any negative comments (either that or I've simply not noticed - I'm rarely interested in what other people think of me so I don't look for their reactions).
    • dont_use_vistaprint
    • By dont_use_vistaprint 10th Jan 19, 4:28 PM
    • 401 Posts
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    dont_use_vistaprint
    Well there are rules for this kind of thing. Theyre not written. THings like you queue in an orderly fashion. You complain about the weather. You dont go near your best mates ex kind of thing.
    Originally posted by spadoosh
    That's the most ridiculous thing Iv'e read this week. Anyone who complains about the weather or anything else completely outside their control is setting themselves up for depression.

    Queues ? Some funny English custom no one else understands

    Ex's ? You have a point, Maybe in the school playground this actually does apply.
    "It is not the critic who counts..." - Theodore Roosevelt
    • spadoosh
    • By spadoosh 10th Jan 19, 4:59 PM
    • 6,480 Posts
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    spadoosh
    That's the most ridiculous thing Iv'e read this week. Anyone who complains about the weather or anything else completely outside their control is setting themselves up for depression.

    Queues ? Some funny English custom no one else understands

    Ex's ? You have a point, Maybe in the school playground this actually does apply.
    Originally posted by dont_use_vistaprint
    And you say this?

    Its very common, guys are often much more immature than women even into their 30s and 40s, so a woman needs an older guy that's wise and knows how to take care of her, a man not a boy. And guys in their 40s and 50s often need women a bit younger for other reasons!

    Care less about what people think or say because you are confident you are with the right person for the right reasons, if they seem confused why, just spell it out to them
    Originally posted by dont_use_vistaprint
    You seem to be saying that men just want sex and women need looking after? And im being ridiculous using an old fashioned rule to highlight that at no point in history have people really considered what the OP is doing as out of the norm?

    You should just put "dudes not welcome" on these threads ladies.
    Don't be angry!
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 10th Jan 19, 5:11 PM
    • 21,758 Posts
    • 58,890 Thanks
    Pollycat
    My partner and I have been a couple for almost 2 years. We've known each other for around 10 years as we work for the same company and formed a firm friendship during those years. Since my marriage broke down and he was long-term separated we decided to give a relationship a try.
    I have no regrets about this but as there is a 16 year age gap between us (I'm almost 36 and he is 51). I've noticed there seems to be quite a bit of non-verbal and verbal judgement, which I've found a little hard to deal with. We often receive strange looks from an older generation and comments towards him, such as "you're punching above your weight". It can be quite upsetting.


    My parents have 13 years between them so I grew up not judging such relationships but I feel this is not the case for others.
    I have no children and he has a 20 year old son, who has completely accepted me and we've become mates.


    Has anyone else in an age gap relationship had similar findings? I want to find a way to care less about what people think and I feel a little alone in that respect.
    Originally posted by Jo3y83
    Who are these 'people' and why do you care what they think?


    If they are 'friends' and are giving you verbal or non-verbal judgement, they are really not your friends. Deal with them as 'acquaintances' - see below.



    If they are acquaintances, I'd just tell them that their comments are not welcome and they either stop or you will cut them dead.


    If they are strangers, a quick 'what the hell does it have to do with you?' should work.


    To answer your quote, I find a lot of women aren't like me, I tend to take no rubbish. I'm not rude or aggressive, but people wouldn't be making any smart a*** comments to me
    Originally posted by bugslet
    Me neither. My sister says I take no prisoners.
    Anyone who stuck their nose into my relationship with OH would get short shrift.


    OP - you need to practice batting nasty, unwelcome comments back.
    • 20aday
    • By 20aday 10th Jan 19, 5:22 PM
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    20aday
    I once dated someone who was 20 years my senior.

    Our relationship didn't last very long as we were both at different times in our lives but we're still friends and I still rent a room off him.

    We had comments back then about how I was a 'gold digger' and now it's questions/comments about how 'weird' it must be, living with an ex... but I don't have to justify myself to people who aren't all that important in my life!
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    • hazyjo
    • By hazyjo 10th Jan 19, 5:50 PM
    • 11,497 Posts
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    hazyjo
    Don't particularly care what people think. Have dated a couple of blokes 10+ years younger, and one 20 years older. My first husband was around 7 years older and looked older, while I look young - at least half a dozen people thought he was my dad lol. I remember being in hospital and they were saying how my dad had been ringing to see how I was. I thought, nah never in a million would he ring, then realised they thought my husband was my dad lol. We just got used to it - maybe just laugh it off instead of trying to justify it. I'd reply with something like 'nah, we're the same age, he's just had a hard life...'.
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    • Domayne
    • By Domayne 10th Jan 19, 5:55 PM
    • 591 Posts
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    Domayne
    People will always judge on everything but who cares what they think, they don't know your story . Just remember the quotes - no-one can make you feel inferior without your consent and life is too short to live it for other people.

    I have androgenetic alopecia and people are always staring at my balding scalp #nohairdontcare
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    • Sagaris
    • By Sagaris 10th Jan 19, 6:18 PM
    • 1,700 Posts
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    Sagaris
    Ignore, ignore and ignore again!

    There is a 15 year gap between me and my husband - I'm older (but don't look or behave like it apparently).

    I didn't realise the age gap when we met, I didn't think it would get serious - and when it did I thought sod it, we were having such a good time (poles apart from my first husband)

    We have now just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary - so do what feels right and sod the haters - we are here for a good time!
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    • GlasweJen
    • By GlasweJen 10th Jan 19, 6:52 PM
    • 6,774 Posts
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    GlasweJen
    I have 2 friends. Friend A is in a long term, settled relationship with a man old enough to be her grandfather and friend B married a man just 3 years older than her.

    Friend B woke up on New Year's Day with her husband (in his 30s) dead beside her in bed.

    Age isn't everything, it's hardly anything. Are you both happy?
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    • Fireflyaway
    • By Fireflyaway 10th Jan 19, 7:33 PM
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    Fireflyaway
    People are naturally curious and opinionated. If there wasn't an age gap you might well be judged on something else. IE one of you might be judged more attractive, fitter, more intelligent or more wealthy than the other and that could cause comment / judgement. I'm white and my husband is African. We often get looks when our together and someone even tried to put my husband off dating me 'warning' him that white girls are trouble!
    I'd say you and your partner are in a similar bracket. If you were 15 and he was 32 that would be creepy or if you were too old to have kids and he really wanted them that could be an issue. Just ignore it. People are very set in their ways when it comes to what is normal.
    • Savvy_Sue
    • By Savvy_Sue 10th Jan 19, 9:22 PM
    • 39,607 Posts
    • 36,746 Thanks
    Savvy_Sue
    Others are a little less nice Sometimes I get asked what the age gap is and when I tell them the response is "16 years!!" as if it's some kind of crime.
    Originally posted by Jo3y83
    Well, the answer is either "what's that got to do with you?" or one of these:

    "What an odd thing to say" or "Did you realise you said that out loud?"
    Originally posted by TBagpuss
    You know, I'd start practising saying that kind of thing out loud, ready for next time. It's always FAR easier to say something you've heard yourself say before, IMO.

    All my siblings have married older partners - not a lot in some cases, quite a lot in others. Me, I went for a toy boy (actually he's only a bit more than a year younger, but still).

    And I won't pretend there aren't challenges. One sibling's partner died after a long and hard illness. Another's partner has had a lot of ongoing health issues. But remember:

    Well you are either in it for a quick shag or you are in it through thick and thin, so when the bad stuff happens, you get on with it and accept it. Mr Bugs fell ill with dementia. I'd always worked on the principle that he would be likely to go before me, so I just cared for him the best I could until it came time for him to go into a care home.

    And in life there are no certainties, you could be the rare case of someone much younger falling ill whilst the older partner is still reasonably fit and healthy.
    Originally posted by bugslet
    So I think I'd say "be more bugslet".
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    • Kim kim
    • By Kim kim 10th Jan 19, 10:12 PM
    • 2,514 Posts
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    Kim kim
    The rule is twice your age minus 7..
    Originally posted by spadoosh
    Not on your nelly!!!
    Iím 51, that would put me with a 95 year old!!!!!
    • pickledonionspaceraider
    • By pickledonionspaceraider 10th Jan 19, 11:09 PM
    • 1,418 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    pickledonionspaceraider
    Are you sure that this relationship is what you want OP?

    I ask this because, if one is completely confident in their convictions then they have no qualms with other peoples thoughts about it

    If a person has the courage of their convictions then no one else's opinion matters.

    It is called Marching to the Beat of your own Drum

    Honestly even asking such questions marks you down as insecure in my view. Nothing wrong with the age gap, however
    • Skintski
    • By Skintski 10th Jan 19, 11:59 PM
    • 467 Posts
    • 736 Thanks
    Skintski
    I’m 38, the other half is 50. I’ve never really given much thought to his age, it’s more about him as a person and us as a couple. Good luck to you OP.
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