It's often said that love is blind, but when you're dating someone considerably older or younger, others are bound to take notice. Society tends to be judgmental of such relationships, with people assuming they are doomed to fail. However, if you're dating someone nearly as old as your parents, there are certain things you should and should not do to ensure that your relationship is successful.
Why Age Doesn't Matter
1. Your Sex Life
An older partner can teach you a lot and may even match your level of energy. If there's sexual chemistry, it doesn't matter how big the age gap is.
2. Meeting Family
If your father is hard to please when it comes to your significant other, your older partner may have an advantage over previous boyfriends or girlfriends. They may have more in common with your parents and be able to hold their own in a conversation.
3. Financial Stability
It's ideal if both you and your older partner are financially stable. However, as long as neither of you is dependent on the other for financial support, money should not add stress to your relationship.
Just because you have political disagreements with someone doesn't mean that you're not romantically interested in them. There are a few ways to handle such situations. You can have passionate discussions about issues you both care about in the hopes of persuading your partner with your youthful idealism, or you can simply agree to disagree.
5. Living Together
Regardless of the age gap, you'll still need to figure out essential things such as sleeping habits or toothpaste lids. Once you've settled these, the age difference will no longer be a factor.
6. Common Interests
Shared interests and values are crucial in any relationship, regardless of age. They are probably what initially drew you to your partner, so cherish them and discover more together.
7. Social Media
People over 40 are now using social media, while it's the younger generation and their ever-evolving apps that are hard to keep up with. If your partner isn't tech-savvy, it might encourage you to unplug and spend more time together, which can only be a good thing.
Why Age DOES Matter
Wanting kids when your partner feels too old to have them can be a deal breaker. Being mistaken for your partner's dad is already a challenge, but being confused for your child's grandparent is even worse from their perspective.
If your partner's friends are mostly their age, it could make you feel alienated. If it's important to be friends with your partner's friends, try to find common ground with them.
3. Emotional Awareness
Age doesn't always dictate emotional maturity. Regardless of where you and your partner are in terms of self-awareness, you need to support each other's growth and learning processes.
Health issues or decreased carefree attitudes could make adventurous dates a no-go for your partner. If an active lifestyle with your partner is important to you, you may need to find healthy, separate interests, or they may surprise you and share your love for activities like skydiving and skiing.
Your beloved may have had an unsuccessful starter marriage, but at least their divorce led them to you. However, if you envision a future with wedding bells and white dresses, and your partner has no interest in going down that path again, it poses a significant problem.
6. Habits/Lifestyle Choices
Trying to change major habits like smoking or heavy drinking may be difficult for your partner if they've been doing it for decades. While people can change, it becomes harder as we age. Altering significant aspects of your lives to suit each other may not lead to a successful relationship.
While we never know when our time will come, it's essential to be emotionally prepared for the possibility of losing a partner who is older or has health issues. It's a reality we may not have to face if our partner is the same age as us. However, keep in mind that life is unpredictable, and health issues can affect anyone at any age. Therefore, it's crucial not to get too fixated on this possibility.