Age Gaps With Ex Boyfriends (What They Mean & Do They Matter?)

This is a subject that I have wanted to tackle for a long time now. However, for whatever reason I have just never gotten around to it.

As many of you are aware, Ex Boyfriend Recovery gets quite a few comments every single day and through those comments I get to meet you, the reader. I get to hear about the latest relationship troubles you are going through and in some cases I get to hear your whole life story.

(For the record, I am not saying that to be facetious. I really do like hearing your life stories.)

When you have such a communicative fan base you begin to notice a few trends here and there.

When I first started this site every other comment I would receive seemed to be about long distance relationships or what to do if your ex got a new girlfriend. So, when I wrote respective articles covering those topics it only made sense that another trend was bound to pop up and sure enough, in my second year running this site that trend came in the form of the grass is greener syndrome.

Well, now I am in year three and I think I have just located the newest trend that you ladies want to hear about…

Age gaps…

More specifically, you want to know what age gaps mean when you have one with your ex.

The First Thought You Get About Age Gaps

When I say,

Age Gap

what is the very first thing you think of?

Well, I can only speak for myself but when I think of an age gap between a couple I think of something like this,

age gap
In other words, I think of a couple separated by a minimum of 20+ years.

Now, my loyal readers know me pretty well and they know that when I write one of these massive guides I don’t like being shortsighted with what I am talking about. While I am sure it would be more than satisfactory for me to talk just about massive age gaps between couples the truth of the matter is that most of the women who want their ex boyfriends back don’t have a massive age gap.

In fact, its rare for most couples to have an age gap close to 20+ years.

So, I think it would be a lot more insightful (and fun) to talk about all kinds of age gaps between couples.

In other words, I would like to talk about what it means for a couple who has any type of age gap (or lack of age gap) and the affect that the age gap has on the male.

What Makes Me Qualified To Talk About Age Gaps?

Isn’t it enough that I am awesome and handsome?

Oh, and that I expect you to blindly follow everything I tell you.

Too much?

Relax, I am kidding.

Ex Boyfriend Recovery hit a record last week.

Screen Shot 2015-02-02 at 11.01.29 AM

Yep, we just hit over 40,000 comments on this site which is just incredible to me. Oh, and for the record that isn’t including the 20,000 emails that I have gotten. In essence, what I am saying is that I have personally dealt with over 60,000 women (if you include the emails) with different boyfriends, husbands and lovers. Many of which have had all kinds of age gaps.

So, I don’t think it is a stretch to claim that I have personally dealt with more age gap related situations than many of my peers so that would make me one of the most qualified people online to hear from about this issue.

Of course, you aren’t here to listen to me parade my credentials out.

No, I suspect that you are more interested in how this age gap business affects your current situation with your ex.

Well, there tends to be two schools of thought when it comes to age gaps and relationships…

The Two Schools Of Thought On Age Gaps

two too or to

In this section I am going to be discussing the two major thought processes that most people tend to have when it comes to an age gap between a couple.

What are the two schools of thought?

  1. That the bigger the age gap the less likely it is that the relationship will last.
  2. That age is just a number and doesn’t really matter.

At this point you are probably wondering what I believe.

After all, I have seen a lot in my time here at Ex Boyfriend Recovery so what the heck is the truth?

Well, I am going to tell you what I believe in a second but first I think it is really important that we grasp what these two schools of thought are trying to say since there is a lot of useful insight in each “school.”

Theory One- “The Bigger The Age Gap The Less Likely It Is That The Relationship Will Last”

i gurantee it

People who believe this theory believe that the more time that separates a couple the more they are doomed to end.

For example, lets say that you and I are dating and you are 22 years old and I am 62 years old.

(It’s a bit extreme but stick with me here…)

Well, that means that there are 40 years separating us.

At 62 I probably have kids (as old as you,) ex wives (if I am dating you,) health problems and my looks have faded a bit (I am still one handsome devil!)

At 22 you probably have no kids, you haven’t been married before, you are very healthy and your looks are at their peak.

Realistically, if we were dating and had this big of an age gap then what is it that we are getting out of the relationship?

At 22 you are probably looking for a good time but you probably also want something that can potentially go somewhere.

I am also assuming that you want kids in the future and at 62 it isn’t likely that I will want them anymore.

So, what is it that we are getting out of the relationship?

Companionship?

Hmm… probably not because at 62 I am a bit standoffish.

Money?

You are young and poor… I am old and rich… Do you see where I am going with this?

Sex?

You are looking for a good time… I am looking for a good time… This does some more likely.

When you look at it like that it doesn’t seem like these are ingredients for a successful relationship, does it?

I mean, on paper it looks like we are at completely different points of our lives.

It almost seems like we are destined to fail.

This is what is at the core of this theory.

The fact that the bigger the age gap the more likely it is that the relationship won’t last.

Of course, there are always two sides to every coin so lets take a look at the other side of this coin.

Theory Two- “Age Is Just A Number And Doesn’t Really Matter”

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People who are in this camp tend to be the ones who put all their faith in love.

They believe that no matter the age gap true love will conquer all.

In other words, a 40 year old can fall in love with a 20 year old and end up happily ever after.

Now, logically when you look at a statement like that and you probably shake your head and think to yourself,

“That would never work…”

But you would be wrong.

There are plenty of examples of couples with large age gaps that not only ended up together but stayed together.

In the end it all boils down to the people in the relationship themselves.

It’s easy to throw a relationship away but if both people are willing to try to make things work then splitting up shouldn’t be a problem at all.

Like I said, people who believe theory two are the romantics.

What I Believe Based On What I Have Seen

believe it

I believe in a hybrid of these two theories.

The truth is that I have seen breakups from all across the board.

Same age couples splitting…

Medium age gap couples splitting…

Large age gap splits…

The truth is that the breakup devil is capable of visiting everyone no matter what the age gap. So, that tells me that what it all really boils down to is the individuals themselves in relationships that make them work.

In other words, theory two seems to be more on point than theory one.

HOWEVER…

I can’t deny the fact that couples with LARGE age gaps tend to have a higher percentage of splitting up when compared to same age couples or even medium age gaps. Oh, and when couples with a large age gap between them do end up staying together they are rarely happy since they are at completely different points in their lives.

So, that tells me that there is some truth to the people who spout theory one.

Ah, but this begs an interesting question.

What do I consider to be a LARGE age gap?

20+ years…

In other words, if you are twenty and your ex boyfriend is forty then that means that the two of you are separated by a large age gap and are more likely to break up or be unhappy.

To recap my thoughts on these theories,

  • Same age couples seem to be reliant on the individuals.
  • Medium age gap couples also seem to be reliant on the individuals.
  • Large age gap couples seem destined to fail based on what I have seen.

Lets now turn our attention to the three major types of age gaps in relationships.

What Are The Four Major Types Of Age Gaps In Relationships?

four

Are there only three types of age gaps when it comes to relationships?

Truthfully…

No, there are a lot more than four.

However, something tells me you would get a bit annoyed if I went down the list like this,

1 year age gap…

2 year age gap…

3 year age gap…

4 year age gap…

And so on and so forth.

So, in an effort to make things a bit easier for you to process I have decided to structure the age gaps into four different categories,

  • Close Age Gap (1-5 years apart)
  • Medium Age Gap (6-10 years apart)
  • Big Age Gap (11-15 years apart)
  • Large Age Gap (15+ years apart)

Lets take a look at each one of these categories.

Close Age Gap (1-5 Years Apart)

same age gap

(She is one year older than him.)

I have to say that most of the relationships I have encountered throughout my time here at Ex Boyfriend Recovery fall into this category.

That means that this is probably the most common age gap between couples.

Oh, and if you didn’t notice, the close age gap is defined as a couple who is either one to five years apart.

In other words, if you are 23 and your boyfriend is 25 then your age gap would fall into this category.

A Word About Being Five Years Apart If You Are Young

Many of the younger readers of this article probably saw the five year age gap and started freaking out.

After all, there is a major difference between someone who is 15 years old and 20 years old.

In my mind it all boils down to maturity.

Someone who tends to be on the younger side in the “close age gap” probably isn’t going to be as mature as someone who is on the older side of the age gap.

(Not to mention that a 20 year old probably shouldn’t be dating a 15 year old but I am going to try not to judge.)

Where do I get this logic from?

How about my own personal experience.

I went to High School eleven years ago.

….

Oh my god…

I am old…

Anyways, when I was in High School I was a bit of a late bloomer when it came to dating.

In fact, I didn’t go on my first date until I was a senior…

(Hey, I didn’t judge you so you don’t judge me.)

Unfortunately, I ended up going on a date with a girl that was younger than me by three years.

I think I was 18 and she was 15.

Now, I didn’t really think anything of the age difference at the time but after the date I certainly did.

I think really what made me realize there was a major maturity difference was when she had some candy and just like a little kid started running around her house like this…

jack sparrow

I literally remember thinking,

“Was there some type of drugs in that candy?”

At the beginning of the date I was looking forward to having a good time with this girl and potentially having a relationship with her until the minute I saw her acting like a child because of candy. It was such an immature thing to do.

My point is simple, when you are younger then these age differences matter more. It is for this reason that different rules apply to my younger readers.

What are these rules?

Well, if you are in high school then you need to be around one year apart to be on the same maturity level I have found. Usually that wouldn’t be the case if you were older but it is.

I mean, imagine a 14 year old dating a 17 year old…

or worse…

A 14 year old dating an 18 year old…

Look, this isn’t like Buffy The Vampire Slayer (Hardcore EBR Readers know about my fascination with that show) where you can date someone who is 200 years older than you and be on the same maturity level.

No, this is real life where age differences in high school do actually affect the maturity of a person.

Of course, if you aren’t in high school then different rules probably apply to you.

A Word About Being Five Years Apart If You Are Older

Imagine this…

Imagine that you are 25 and the person you are dating is 30.

Well, I would consider this to be a pretty close age gap.

Notice how a five year age difference mattered a lot when you were younger but as you grow older it isn’t that big of a deal.

At 25 you are probably looking for something more serious (marriage) and at 30 your boyfriend is probably at the same point of his life.

As long as you are both at the same point of your life then things are looking good and there shouldn’t be any problems as a result of the close age gap.

Oh, that’s an interesting topic..

Can the close age gap be a contributing factor to the breakup with your ex?

The Close Age Gap And Your Ex

It goes without saying that since most of the relationships I see have a pretty close age gap that I deal with a lot of breakups in this area.

So, in all of my infinite wisdom and experience have I found any way that this age gap affects you and your ex.

You know, when I take a step back and look at this from a birds eye view usually I can point to a relationship and tell you whether or not age/maturity played any type of role in a breakup.

I have to say that usually when it comes to the “close age gap” it is rare that a breakup can occur because of an age problem.

Now, the one modification I would like to make with that statement is when it comes to our younger viewers.

Remember the funny story I told above about my first high school date?

Well, the reason that, that was such a bizarre experience for me was the fact that I felt way more mature than that girl. Sure, only three years separated us but after seeing her run around all crazy like it became clear to me that we were on different planets when it came to maturity.

Oh, and just to clarify this girl running around wasn’t meant to be like the cute/sexy playful running around that my wife does when I am playfully chasing her.

This girls running around literally felt like a little kid who had too much chocolate and is annoying you by running around because they got too excited.

So, if you are younger and in high school and you and your ex broke up then age/maturity could have played a role in my opinion.

The Medium Age Gap (6-10 Years Apart)

7 yeasr apart

(They are seven years apart)

This is without a doubt my favorite age gap to talk about because couples who have this age gap are often at an amazing time in their lives.

As a general rule, couples who have a medium age gap are older and more mature and that’s where fun things like marriage come into play with relationships.

I mean, rarely will you see a young couple separated by six, seven, eight, nine or ten years.

Can you imagine a 15 year old girl dating a 25 year old man?

(I am going to judge on this one.)

If I had a daughter who was 15 and she brought home a 25 year old guy I would definitely be all over this guys case.

“Are you trying to take advantage of my daughter?”

“Why is it that you feel the need to go after high school girls when you can’t get someone your own age?”

“Why is it that you find a high school girl more attractive than a full grown woman?”

Hey, I am a Taurus so I am allowed to be protective.

Generally speaking couples with this age difference fall in their mid-twenties to mid-thirties and it is at this age when both men and women are looking for a life partner which makes things really interesting when you are looking at age gaps and ex boyfriends.

The Medium Age Gap And Your Ex

The medium age gape is defined as couples who are 6 to 10 years apart.

Generally speaking couples this far apart still have a lot in common and as we established above usually tend to be a bit older and mature. It is for this reason that couples in the medium age gap range are looking for more serious commitments like marriage.

Now, most men are going to look at settling down with someone but there are always going to be those special cases of men that get freaked out by a deep commitment like marriage.

I am going to give you two examples to illustrate my point.

  • Example One- A man (25) is dating a woman (32)
  • Example Two- A woman (25) is dating a man (32)

Example One

Lets say that you are 32 years old and your boyfriend is 25.

You have never been married before and at 32 you are receiving a lot of pressure to settle down from friends and family. Your boyfriend, on the other hand, is still in party mode a little bit. While deep down he does recognize that with your age you will be looking for a deep commitment he is just coasting through life enjoying what little moments he can.

In other words, he really isn’t looking to settle down for a few years.

This kind of puts you at odds with each other.

You are looking for a deeper commitment…

He is looking to just have fun and enjoy life…

You can see where this is leading, right?

Free On Demand Coaching
Yes, please

Example Two

Example two is very different than example one for a lot of reasons.

For this example we are going to assume that your boyfriend is 32 and hasn’t ever been married before.

Now, at 25 you probably aren’t looking to settle down for a few more years and that is just fine since at 25 you are more than entitled to have a good time here or there.

Of course, I can’t help but notice that your boyfriend at 32 hasn’t ever settled down before. You would think that at 32 a man would be looking for something. Unfortunately, your boyfriend hasn’t. In fact, when you really think about it he is still in party mode.

While his age may be 32 he is still a 23 year old kid at heart.

Now, this is completely fine if you are 25 (looking to just have some fun) and he is 32 (looking to just have some fun.) Of course, what is the one constant in this life?

Change!

You aren’t always going to just want to have fun…

No, eventually in a few years you are going to start wanting something more.

Something like marriage.

Now, here is the problem with that. If at 32 your boyfriend hasn’t advanced to a level where he is looking to settle down then he probably isn’t going to want to for a very long time.

A good example off the top of my head is George Clooney.

At 33 George Clooney wasn’t married (he had been married previously but that doesn’t help my point.)

Clooney wouldn’t get married again until he was 53 years old.

That is 20 years without a serious commitment.

Now, if we turn our attention back to the example in which you are 25 then that means you would be 45 by the time you would be married to your boyfriend assuming he has the same type of mindset as a Clooney.

Something tells me you aren’t too thrilled with the idea of waiting until you are 45 to get married

The Big Age Gap (11-15 Years Apart)

13 years apart

(They are 13 years apart)

I would consider a big age gap between a couple to be somewhere between 11 to 15 years apart.

That means that,

If you are 30 then your boyfriend would be 45.

or

If you are 25 then your boyfriend would be 40.

or

If you are 20 then your boyfriend is 35.

I think you get it.

Couples with these big age gaps tend to be of a rarer breed. However, I will say that I have seen a lot of situations like this and I don’t have great news…

If you have a big age gap then the odds are starting to stack against you. Now, I won’t say that the odds are completely against you because a couple who is a bit older 30+ years can find ways to make their relationships work but when you are dealing with young women or young men who are going after 40 year old’s I do see some problems.

Call me old school but I believe a successful relationship is defined as one that goes somewhere (likely marriage.)

I just have a hard time believing that a 25 year old can make a 40 year old commit to them.

There is just too big of an age gap.

Lets take a more in-depth look at this particular age gap.

Insight On A 25 Year Old Man and A 40 Year Old Woman

Lets say that you are 40 years old and your boyfriend is 25 years old.

Your boyfriend is deeply in love with you and wants to settle down with you.

Now, at 40 you have been through your fair share in life. You may have a few kids, a few exes and have been hardened from these experiences.

Your boyfriend, at 25, hasn’t really had these types of experiences yet.

Now, he is in love with you and what do men who are deeply in love tend to do?

They propose…

This might be a problem since your boyfriend is still very young and probably wants a family. Now, this wouldn’t be a problem if you were 30. However, the fact that you are 45 means that having children is going to be quite difficult. In fact, the odds are really against you there.

So, you are faced with a very tough situation as a result of the age gap.

You love your boyfriend and he loves you but realistically you won’t be able to bear his children and start a family with him.

These are the type of situations you can potentially face with a big age gap like this.

Of course, that is just one situation within the relationship.

Lets go outside the relationship and look at more external issues you will face.

What Society Thinks Of Your Big Age Gap

I am going to make this simple for you…

Society doesn’t like big age gaps.

Let me give you an example.

If you go to Google and type in the phrase,

“Hollywood Gold Diggers”

You are going to be greeted with 10 results all about young women who marry older men. The thought here is that these young women have married the older men just to get their money. This is essentially what society thinks about women who date older man.

Oh, and I haven’t even gotten to the best part yet..

Society isn’t the only entity that dislikes big age gaps.

Your family won’t either…

I can’t tell you how many times I have received an email from women that goes like this,

“Chris… I want my ex back… BLAH BLAH BLAH (here comes the interesting part) but my parents can’t get over the age difference. They keep telling me that he is not serious and that he is just using me. What should I do?”

I recently wrote an article about friends and family who disagree with you trying to get back with your ex where I talk about this effect in much greater detail.

Of course, the gist kind of goes like this…

Don’t expect to have a lot of your friends or family on your side when you are trying to get your ex back ESPECIALLY if you are trying to get one back where there is a big age gap between you.

Now, the obvious question to ask at this point is,

Why?

Why is it that society, friends and family disagree with big age gaps so much?

Because it’s taboo or not normal.

Think of it like this, when people look at a normal couple they usually envision two people who are one to five years apart and generally most couples do fall between this age gap. So, that is what society is used to.

Of course, when society, friends or family are confronted with an age gap that exceeds the norm there is a negative connotation that surrounds it.

All you have to do is look at the gold digger example I gave above to see that.

Large Age Gap (15+ Years Apart)

Michael Douglas And Catherine Zeta-Jones Split

(These two are 25 years apart.)

Here we are…

The final age gap.

This age gap is probably the rarest ones to see but I have seen it before. In fact, I actually remember the last time I saw it.

A woman had contacted me about wanting her ex boyfriend back.

He was 65 and she was 28.

In other words, there was a 37 year age difference between them.

How this guy got this girl is beyond me but what mattered was the fact that the girl seemed to be genuinely upset about the breakup and was willing to do anything to get him back.

I know this is going to sound horrible but as I was reading her story I couldn’t help but wonder a few things,

  • How did this 65 year old man manage to win the heart of a 28 year old?
  • What the heck did the 28 year old girl get out of the relationship?

I didn’t have the guts to ask the girl any of these things so I just focused on trying to help her get him back.

“Ok, use the no contact rule on him.”

She told me that she was going to but she doubted that he would reach out to her.

“Why?”

She told me that he was a bit older so he wasn’t very versatile with technology. He didn’t text or have any type of social media preference.

“Dang… How the heck do you influence someone when you don’t have the technology to even make it work?”

It was at this point that I came to a realization.

This man and this woman are at completely different points of their lives and therein lies the problem,

My Major Issue With The Large Age Gap

I am all about helping women not only get back with their exes but keep their exes when they get them back.

If you visit the sales page for my E-Book, you will notice that I cite multiple examples where I have not only helped women get back with their ex boyfriends but they have actually taken the next step and got married.

And therein lies the problem….

With the large age gap that outcome is not as likely.

I am not saying it is impossible because it is definitely not impossible but it is very unlikely.

Lets take our example above of the 28 year old girl who wants her ex boyfriend back who happens to be 65.

Well, I have a hard time believing that at 65 this guy is going to want to get married. Now, I could be completely wrong and he may not want to be alone for the last half of his life but based on what I have seen it probably isn’t happening.

So, my major problem with the large age gap really revolves around the fact that a long lasting commitment like marriage is probably not going to happen.

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Written by EBR Teamate

Chris Seiter