TLDR: Every relationship is unique. You’ll have to decide for yourself what kind of age gap is too big and what’s not. At the end of the day, age really is just a number, except when it comes to having kids. So if your age gap could impact the ability to have the family you’ve always wanted, that might be something to think about.
Tango's Take 🔮
When it comes to age gaps, like most aspects of relationships, it’s up to you to decide what feels right. Recent research out of Australia shows that being in a relationship with someone who is significantly younger can initially be more satisfying, but tends to lead to higher marital dissatisfaction over time. Yet other research has found that women partners who are older than their partners in age-gap relationships report higher relationship satisfaction compared to women who are younger or similarly aged. And another study found that 74% of women in age-gap relationships were securely attached, pointing to the likelihood of a healthy relationship. As you can see, the research isn’t conclusive.
Starting this week, we’re excited to include the expert perspective of our in-house relationship scientist and licensed clinical psychologist, Dr. Karen Rothman. Here’s what she has to say about age gaps:
"They say that age is just a number. To a large degree, this is true. We each will have different comfort levels with dating someone who is closer vs. further from our age. For some, it could be really important to be able to share nostalgia about pop culture we both grew up with in, say, the early 90’s. For others, it could be just as important to be able to learn from an older partner who has lived more of life than them.
Even still, dating someone your age or close to your age doesn’t guarantee similarities in experience or maturity level. By being open with your partner about what is important to you and not shying away from generational slang or pop-culture references that you like, you’re already testing out if the person is a good match. We say nothing else should matter!
Where it may certainly matter, though, is in the topic of having children. If you or your partner is significantly older, and one or both of you want to conceive children naturally, this is a very important topic to discuss early on. "