Confessions: He's a teeny bit younger than me, is that so terrible? - Evewoman
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Confessions: He's a teeny bit younger than me, is that so terrible?

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I am 20 and currently dating a wonderful guy also 20 and we really love each other. I am, however, 5 months older than him.

So far, we have not seen any problem with this relationship but we have both always imagined that it is normal for the guy to be older in the relationship.

What would you advise us about this? Is this likely to cause problems between us in future? What kind of problems should we expect and how shall we deal with them? He does not mind at all that I am older than him.   {Daisy}

 

What the readers say:

Daisy, relationships are only about two people and it doesn't matter the age gap between you two so long as you understand each other. Love is a key factor regardless of the age gap. We have witnessed many families having successful marriages even though it has been proven that women mature faster than men so that is why it is always preferred that the man be older.

{Jeff Chepkwony}

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Age as they say doesn’t count where love comes first. Your age difference is equally small so you need not worry too much about it. If you consider maturity of male and a female of same age, then the feminine tend to be more mature than the male; they therefore say a man should always marry a woman younger than him. My take is that you go for love of your life and especially that your age gap is minimal.

{Ouma Ragumo}

Age is not an issue for a successful relationship. What is usually most important is love, understanding and maturity. However, both of you should sit down and talk about it now before someone decides to use it as an excuse in future.

{Aseri Dick}

Men marrying women way older than them is no longer an issue in the present day. The only problem is that as you age, your boyfriend may get attracted to younger women and may sometimes remind you that you are older than him. For now, give him some space and ask yourself whether you two are ready for this. If you are then you should observe three things which are strength, obedience and love.

{Tasma Saka}

Differences in maturity between men and women can and will become more obvious as you grow older. The key thing will be maturity and the love you will have for each other. The only important thing especially where the difference is that small is the level of maturity between the two of you.

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{Fred Jausenge}

 

Simon says:

Daisy, relationship matters are always as complex and versatile as the persons involved. Our relationships are always shaped by our beliefs and to a large extent our upbringing, character and individualism. Most of these are shaped by various things such as the environment we grew up or external influencers such as friends that we keep around us or from the information we obtain from various sources such as books, movies as well as the rumour mill.

I also wish to put it to you that all that goes on between two people in a relationship varies from couple to couple. It is never a one-size-fits-all situation since we all have different perceptions about life. People of any reasonable age can get into and build strong relationships even when they are of the same age or more so when the lady is older than the man. What really matters in such situations is the degree of understanding and mutual respect between the parties and their ability to overcome societal ridicule and mockery. This is because society has shaped our understanding of the structure of relationships is such that the man should always be older but this is only a belief. Relationships that are the direct opposite of this have worked out with many even leading to marriage while many that conform to this structure often break down an end.

You are not likely to encounter different problems compared to a couple that may be dating within the right structure. There will be challenges here and there but with the goodwill to work things through and true love for each other, you will both get through them. However, I will remind you are at 20 you are both very young and are just starting out in life. You give it a shot and do the best you can and see how the next couple of years play out for you. Relationship matters often take different twists and turns as we age and as such I would encourage you to take things a little slow for now. There is therefore nothing wrong with dating a person of your exact age, it is only ideal for him to be older according to general societal beliefs.

Simon is a relationships counsellor

Hilda says:

There is no perfect age difference that a couple should work with but instead a general idea, simply because it is said or rather proven that a woman ages faster than a man. For you, your age difference appears to be negligible and you can have a great relationship if you are determined to have one.

Age factor on its own cannot guarantee the success of a relationship neither can it be the reason for the failure of a relationship.

There are other fundamental factors such as trust, love, patience among others that are not easy to compromise without affecting the union. I say this because most unions observe this unwritten rule that the male has to be older yet they are still threatened or even break despite the ‘proper’ age gap.

You say you love each other and your boyfriend has no problem with the five months difference, then believe it and work on building a formidable union.

Although the aging process cannot be stopped it can be a graceful process by observing a healthy lifestyle and keeping stress at bay.

On the other hand, you are asking this because you either do not believe him or you are not comfortable with this difference yourself. If that is the case then you need to settle it within yourself before you proceed to the next level of this relationship.

In case you are still uncomfortable with it, you need to act honestly by ending the relationship. Otherwise you will carry with you the fears and insecurities that the age difference provokes.

This will mean that you are starting your marriage on a wrong footing.

Remember all relationships have a supposed odd that they deliberately work to overcome. You too can overcome this.

 

Hilda Boke Mahare has a background in Counselling Psychology

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Evewoman.co.ke

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