Age Gap Relationships Work!
Interestingly, a study on Age Gap
Relationships indicated that cases in which the wife was older
than the husband showed a higher than usual proportion of good
adjustments, as did those in which the husband was eight or more
years older. Yet these same marriages showed also the highest
proportion of poor adjustments.
It was found that the happiest group of husbands
had wives twelve or more years younger, but that the happiest
wives were from four to ten years older than their husbands. Yet the
happiest couples were those in which the husband was from three to
five years older. So you figure it out. Here are some helpful
1. If the man is about the same age as, or
somewhat older than the girl, there will be no special problem of
2. If the girl is slightly older there will
be no special problem unless one or the other feels sensitive about
it. The only question then will be, "How do they feel about it?"
3. As people grow older, age differences
become less important. Other things being equal, there will be less
difference between a woman of fifty and a man of seventy, than
between a girl of twenty and a man of forty.
4. When one is relatively young and the
other as much as twelve years older, the couple should carefully
review the following problems:
is a good age to marry?
In these age gap relationships, there may be real
differences in their interest in physical activities. If the man is
the elder, this may not be too important. A man of thirty-five may
play as good a game of golf or even tennis, and swim as well as a
girl of twenty.
In fact their age gap may actually make them more
evenly matched. A greater age gap relationship problem will be the
stage in which their interests happen to be.
Younger people often want to gad about at dances,
parties, night clubs, and similar activities. When people become
older such activities are far less attractive and may, if indulged
in too much, become boring.
If the male is considerably older and he and his
wife do what he wants, she may miss out on a phase of her experience
which, rightly or wrongly, she may always regret. If they do what
she enjoys most, he is being dragged through the same experiences
twice, perhaps after he is eager to go on to something else.
A compromise may work out. On the other hand, it
may result in a type of social life which is satisfactory to neither
of them. A deeper phase of the same problem concerns one's attitude
toward life. To those of less experience the problems of age gap
relationships seem much simpler than they actually are.
Young people are quite likely to feel that the
older generation must be knaves or fools, or they would long since
have abolished war, poverty, industrial strife and mosquitoes.
Older people,on the other hand, often find the
enthusiasms of youth amusing. They may tolerate them in their
children, but do not want them in a spouse. If the age gap is so
great that the wife regards her husband as an old fogy, and the
husband thinks of his wife as a simple child who spends too much
effort and time in things that do not matter, the situation is not
favorable to a successful marriage.
Yet the fact that age gap relationships are risky
does not necessarily mean that it should not be attempted. One young
lady of twenty-five who was marrying a man twice her age strongly
stated that she would rather marry a first-class man of fifty than a
third-rate man of thirty.
There could be other advantages to such a union.
The girl who marries an older man has a better chance of knowing
what she is getting. In any case, the most important consideration
is not age, but maturity.
Younger people who are more mature than most of
their contemporaries may actually find an older mate to be more
congenial. Yet as in any age gap relationships, the preference for a
much older mate should be scrutinized with great care.
The danger is that the older person is
psychologically a substitute parent, rather than a mate.