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Relationships with large age gaps

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Whether you’re an older man with a younger woman or the other way around, relationships where there’s a large age gap can be extremely successful. However, they’re also not without their problems. The issues you might face in your relationship can depend on the size of the gap, but you’re likely to have different priorities and expectations from each other. Addressing these differences and learning to understand each other more can help the relationship to grow and last.

Is the gap too big?

Sometimes even the deepest love can’t always get round the difficulties of having a really big age gap. There can be serious considerations with some age differences, such as where one of the parties is under 18. You might also need to factor in either yours or your partner’s desire to have a family; as if one of you is too old it can be a cause of tension. If you are both at different stages of life it can lead to difficulties, such as if one of you has a successful career while the other is enjoying themselves with college friends.

Be together for the right reasons

Just because there is a large age gap, it doesn’t mean that the relationship is necessarily wrong. However, it might be worth looking a bit deeper if you’re always looking for partners who are considerably younger or older than you are. It could be because you want someone to look after you and take care of everything, as a parent would. Alternatively, you might be attracted to people who look up to you and what you’ve already achieved.

Be ready for the differences

relationships with a large age gapThere are bound to be issues in the relationships as you negotiate the different generations. It doesn’t matter how committed you are to each other, an age gap is always going to bring up some problems. It could be to do with your political beliefs and childhood memories or differences in fashion and music tastes. The way to get round these successfully is to try and understand where the other person is coming from and what’s important to them. Spend time listening to each other’s music or watching a film that they think is a classic. You might find that you have more in common than you first thought.

Not everyone will be happy

Throughout your relationship, and especially in the beginning, you’re likely to meet with some degree of criticism from family and friends. This doesn’t mean that they dislike your partner, but it could just be because they don’t understand what you see in each other. Don’t try and fight with them all the time, as this won’t portray the relationship in the right light. Instead you need to explain the reasons you’re together and allow them time to get to know your partner.

Don’t focus too much on age

You need to be aware of the age difference, but it shouldn’t become the main focus of the relationship. You have to be careful not to blame the age gap for all the issues and disagreements you have. Only use it when it’s truly relevant to the conversation and consider other reasons why you’re having problems.

There are many relationships with large age gaps that have survived for many years. If this is the right partner for you, then you should be strong enough to get through any of the other problems you might encounter.

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About Catherine Stern

About Catherine Stern

Catherine Stern is a freelance writer with a background in marketing and PR. She currently writes web content on a range of subjects, from finance and business to travel and home improvements. As a working single mum of two young boys she understands the pressures that today’s working parents face and the topics they want to read about.

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