One common question revolving around modern dating is whether age is just a number. It’s unfortunate that society mostly looks down upon partners with a vast age gap of about 10-15 years in today’s era. This depends on many other social factors, which revolve around a society’s cultures and beliefs.
The definition of a May-December relationship is when two people of a substantial age difference are involved romantically. May refers to the spring life of the young, while December refers to the winter life of the old. These relationships go either way. For example, the lady could be older than the man, and the man could also be older than the lady.
How do May-December Relationships Work?
The longevity of a relationship is reliant on age and the maturity levels of the people involved. In this case, couples with a considerable gap are happier than the same age partners or people with a reduced age gap.
As much as this is true, these setups will often experience societal stigma, which may cause setbacks in a relationship. This is why if you are in this kind of a setup, you have to get prepared for people’s opinions about your relationship and the many other obstacles and societal stigmas that come with it.
This is why an experienced divorce lawyer from Philadelphia advocates that you ask yourself these questions during the dating phase before you fully commit.
How Do Your Life Goals and Interests Match?
The older you grow, the reality of this will become more evident. If you’re willing to commit for the long-term, it’s essential to make sure that these align. Look at the hobbies and interests that help you connect, as these will help strengthen your connection in the long run.
Can You Handle Public Scrutiny?
These relationships are more likely to experience more societal scrutiny than “normal” relationships. The age gap may not be so evident during the middle ages, but it will undoubtedly be once one partner gets into their senior years. If you’re easily affected by public opinions over your life, this may not be the best setup for you. Just make sure that you can handle it before you commit to this; however much it gets into your nerves.
Is There Equality in the Relationship?
It is easy to take up a mothering role, especially to the younger partner, and this is not healthy in building a relationship. If the connection is based on power or who rules over the other, they might not be in the relationship with the right intentions. In such situations, the younger person cannot speak out their opinions or make decisions, which should be a source of concern before committing. Therefore, if you feel small in your relationship, this kind of love would not be the best fit for you.
The Challenges You’ll Face
In the long run, as much as these relationships are rewarding, they have their common share of challenges. However, these challenges should be addressed and handled like any other relationship. Here are common challenges that you’re likely to experience:
- Sexual Drive
This is one thing that most couples don’t openly talk about, and it may lead to devastating results later on in the relationship. There’s no doubt that sexual drives also vary in age gaps. Sexual issues may arise sometime in the future, and when they do, it’s essential to know how to deal with them.
- Health Challenges
This mainly affects the older partner, and health issues are never predictable. Therefore, it is vital to have a candid discussion on dealing with these issues once they come up in the future. On the other hand, if you’re the younger partner, be ready to deal with these situations as they arise.
- Family Acceptance
One of the barriers to having a long-lasting relationship is the people close to you. These will include; children, if you had some, close friends and family. The idea may not make sense to them at all.
It gets more complicated when children are involved. It can be challenging for them to accept and respect the younger partner as superior to them. You will need to know how to deal with these situations before they get out of hand. It can take time for people to accept the relationship, but time and growth will undoubtedly yield results.
- The Child Factor
In such scenarios, the idea of having children of your own may be an issue. Older women may want kids and not get some, while men may not want to have them when they are older. It’s essential to reach an agreement on what to do in such situations.
Modern options such as surrogacy or adoption may come in handy for older women who want kids. However, if you still don’t agree about children, visiting a counsellor may be an excellent solution to help you reach a conclusion that will make both of you comfortable.
The Benefits of a May December Relationship
As much as there are challenges to May-December relationships, there are many advantages to it. Some of these include:
- No time wastage
In such setups, each party knows what they want, and they get into it for a stable and long-lasting relationship.
- The Money Factor
Money is a central issue affecting relationships. People are more likely to be in stable relationships if they don’t have to worry much about finances. For example, if you date someone older, having money arguments will most likely be a thing of the past, and it can build stability in your relationship.
When one is older, they have seen it all, and they most likely won’t lie about things or situations to avoid something. This makes the May-December relationships beautiful as petty arguments and openness make the relationship successful altogether.
- Confidence Booster
This builds a level of pride and confidence mainly for the older person to get someone younger to love them. It gives them hope that they are still vibrant enough for a young person to have loved them. There’s no feeling more incredible than this.
- Few Insecurity Episodes
The young generation relationships are known be less matured in relational situations. However, in May-December relationships, there will be clarity in what each party wants, and trust is a significant factor in making the relationship sustainable.
- Open Discussions and Communication
Since May-December relationships are not readily accepted in society, the age gap will bring about conversations involving the kids or the future setbacks they may face in the relationship. This helps you to deal with conflicts and come up with agreements easier.
- Extra Effort on the Relationship
These kinds of relationships are prone to public scrutiny, and opinions make the couple involved put in the work to make it work against all odds. This kind of motivation gives more reason to avoid petty arguments and handle the challenges that may come your way, however complicated and get over them. In the long run, they set an example that these set-ups work.
- More Freedom
The older party may have missed a lot in their younger years, so at this point, when they start a relationship with someone more youthful, it may bring a needed energy boost to their life. This experience allows them to travel or take part in hobbies which make them feel younger and happier. It also enables the younger party to experience the things they have missed before without worrying much about the bills.
No one has the right to define how your relationship is supposed to be. You two are the ones who will determine what your relationship will be like and how to overcome the storms that come with it. There’s no reason you shouldn’t date someone older than you just because society dictates so.