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29 year age gap - can a relationship work? Also...'bedroom advice' please!

(122 Posts)
praying4winter Tue 09-Apr-13 11:19:37

I've been seeing a man who is 29 years older than me, for about 6 months now.

We've discussed the possibility of a proper future between us and he seems keen; as am I, but he keeps saying although the age gap doesn't matter to him, he's worried that as I get into my 40s and "hit their prime and become sexier" (his words, he says it happens to all women), it will cause problems as he will be (again, in his own words) "a geriatric".

He keeps himself fit; lots of walking/hiking, jujitsu, has a young outlook on life and has no health problems as yet - whereas I have a dodgy back/shoulders, my mum was signed off work permanently at the age of just 42 due to rheumatoid arthritis and she also has so many health issues; it's likely I'll 'degenerate' before him! smile

Can a relationship work with such an age difference? If you saw a 31 year old woman with a 60 year old man would you think that was weird? Worth more than just the first glance, that kind of thing.
He's quite 'hippy dippy' (for want of a better phrase) and dresses in combats, baggyish jeans with a shirt and hoodies, but it suits him.
So not like he's dressing or acting his age.

My second question is the sex.

I don't want to stereotype, but I've always been with men my own age (and not many of them either).
We have had sex once, but he calls it making love and is very into pleasing me first, very touchy feely and takes it slow and lovingly, whereas my past exes (there have only been 2 of them) have been quite fast and furious - not all the time, but I do enjoy that sometimes.
I enjoy 'giving' rather than receiving (you know?) but no idea whether he's into 'those' as he hasn't said and I have no idea how - or even whether to - ask him, same goes for umm...sorry but I need to ask - anal? I have done it and enjoy it...I'm guessing he may not (he has said he's been fairly traditional and not tried tying up/being tied up, dressing up etc but would be willing to try most things).

I don't want to come across as some nympho and scare him to death but he doesn't seem totally at ease using the more crude words to describe the acts I want to indulge in, so I feel quite awkward in knowing how to ask what he likes or would be willing to try.

This is a genuine post, honest - so any answers appreciated smile

HelenDaniels Tue 09-Apr-13 13:39:56

I think you will get bored very quickly. That is a massive age gap and in a few years he will seem a lot, lot older.

bestcomestothosewhowait Tue 09-Apr-13 13:46:47

I'm seeing an older man. It's early days (3 months). He is 64. I am 30. We get on fantastically. He is kind, good company, just lovely.

We have discussed the long term but we don't know what will happen. At the moment we are enjoying it for what it is but I have fallen in love with him (and him me). We have pressures though - my young children, his grown up children, the 34 years between us, his looming retirement as my career is picking up.

But, with all the divorce stats (myself included), being run over by a bus etc etc we've decided to carry on for now. We don't know what the future will bring - we will see and we're enjoying it for now.

FWIW the sex is the best sex of my life. He gives me multiple orgasms, is very into oral sex, lasts a good amount of time, is very loving and lustful. We've discussed but not yet done stuff like dressing up, tying up and so on.

I couldnt really ask for anything more...apart from the issues of age gap obviously.

I haven't however mentioned anal sex grin

Stropperella Tue 09-Apr-13 13:46:50

60 may seem quite young (ish). 70 = pretty bloody old actually. Just make sure you go into it with no illusions. Which is easier said than done.

HowToSayNo Tue 09-Apr-13 14:33:19

Sorry I haven't read this all, but wanted to add my experience (spookily similar)
I was 31, he was 60. He was hippy-ish etc. made me feel warm and secure. We had lots in common. All seemed good. But I had doubts and I was very aware that in 10/20 years I would still be relatively young and he could need a carer.

Unlike your dp, mine shrugged it off. Said we could all be hit by a bus tomorrow.

With hindsight lots of things weren't right, but one of the hardest was dealing with no common cultural references. I've always been in to 60s music so I knew all his, but he had no idea about mine. This dragged me down after a while. Other issues were that I still wanted to go out dancing sometimes. I was still young and wanted to do young things. He wanted to have dinner parties and make intellectual conversation (fine by me as part of more but not exclusively). I felt like my need to be young was puerile (he'd done all that and couldn't remember the need for it).

I ended up feeling very resentful and as though I was compromising my needs all the time.

He was laid back and easy going, but we were at different stages of life.

That's ultimately why I called it off.

LessMissAbs Tue 09-Apr-13 14:41:37

OP - walking a dog and going to pubs is hardly an indication of the joy of youth in a man!!!

praying4winter Tue 09-Apr-13 14:51:14

LessMissAbs that's not what I meant - I meant that I'm not all about clubbing and other perceived 'young stuff'.

I'm just as happy staying in of an evening - or - taking the dog on a long walk around the countryside as I am going out.

Good to hear from people who've experienced it, and that they've had totally different views on it...lots of things to think about so thank you all smile

BerylStreep Tue 09-Apr-13 15:05:22

Well, you have experience of older men if your ex is now 49 - 18 years older. Was the age gap a big issue then?

I went out with a guy who was 10 years older than me when I was 18 - for 3 years. I was flattered to begin with that he found me interesting, but in retrospect he was extremely controlling who wanted someone younger to control. We went out together lots, but he hated me doing anything on my own.

kday Tue 09-Apr-13 16:26:58

My mum was married to a man much older than her. He died at almost 80 leaving her a widow just as she retired at 60 and could look forward to travelling etc. You say you'd only be 50ish and could meet someone else but (a) it's actually not that easy to meet like minded souls and (b) if he's as special to you as he should be if you've spent 20 years with him, you will grieve, hard. Of course a young man could die prematurely (my first husband died at 31) but I'd never set myself up for that kind of hurt, and being with a much older man is definitely taking you down that track. That's not to say don't do it if it's worth it to you, but go in with your eyes WIDE open about what the reality will be in 20 years.

praying4winter Tue 09-Apr-13 17:24:52

BerylStreep no he was very immature for his age, always out partying, gambling all his money, into punk music with a Mohawk - seemed fun at the time but actually wasn't after a while.

So no real experience with men of a certain age, that actually act their age.

Skinnywhippet Tue 09-Apr-13 17:55:03

I think you might regret this. It might seem like novelty, as all new relationship do to start with but that will soon wear off. What do your friends etc think?

I know you say you like quiet activities like pubs and dog walking, but do you want that exclusively? If you want to go abroad in say 5 - 10 years time his travel insurance is going to be massively inflated due to age. Is he currently working and due to retire soon? If so his income will reduce preventing him from doing things you might want to do. Does he have grown up children? If so, how will they feel about you and how would that affect you and your 3 yea old financially in the future?

I think the problem with the relationship is you might be closing doors on to things you don't even know you want yet. I feel a relationship should help to broaden you and your life, but think this one might well close down your opportunities.

Can I ask why you seem to be drawn to much older men? does he offer you some security that you crave? how did you met your current boyfriend?

As an afterthought....I think the only person who really knows whether this will work is you, but considering you are on this forum discussing it, you clearly have some concerns, which may only grow.

whenIwasRosie Tue 09-Apr-13 18:02:54

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

juneau Tue 09-Apr-13 18:04:57

If I saw you out I'd probably assume he was your dad. My dad is exactly that much older than me, so I think it's a fair assumption.

What would worry me about the age gap is not now, but in 10 or more years. My aunt married a man who was 20 years older than her - a very lively, nice, older man. He died suddenly at the age of 74, widowing her before she'd even retired. She now says though that although she'd have loved him to live much longer, that if he had he'd have really slowed her down. She is now 70 herself and travels widely with her friends, entertains, etc. If he was still alive he'd be 90 and she says she couldn't imagine sharing her life with someone so old. So that's something you might want to think about - particularly as your BF is another ten years older than that. Can you imagine your 50-year-old self wanting to be with an 80-year-old and living life at his pace?

juneau Tue 09-Apr-13 18:09:17

P.S. My aunt never met anyone else. She tried, for a while, but he was the love of her life and no one else could hold a candle to him. Don't assume it's easy to meet someone new later in life - some people manage it - but many others don't.

fuzzpig Tue 09-Apr-13 18:09:18

Hmm. Well, my DH is 19yrs older so obviously I'm not against AGRs. We've been together over 10 years now and are very happy and strong (we have been through an awful lot). Cultural/generational differences haven't been an issue with us, barring the odd "before my time grin" type thing, we have loads in common (both very geeky) and enjoy sharing/experiencing what we don't have in common if that makes sense.

You seem very unsure though and it doesn't sound like there's that raw, lustful chemistry that there should be after only 6m iyswim. But then maybe that's not always the sign of a long lasting relationship anyway. I don't know, if you want your Forever relationship right now then maybe it's not a good idea, but if you're happy to wing it for a while then why not?

Can't comment on the anal sex thing, euuwww(sorrygrin)

Mumsyblouse Tue 09-Apr-13 18:20:51

If it's a once in a lifetime relationship, soulmate type experience I wouldn't care about age. But this doesn't sound like this type of relationship. 60 is very young, for an older person smile but I have seen in my parents age group (60-70) lately a lot of ill-health, chronic illness and so on with previously healthy active fit exercising types, you can't pretend that a 65 year old body is going to be the same as a 45 year old body, and things like joint pain, mini-strokes, sight deterioration and so on can really affect mobility, even if the person is basically fine (I'm excluding the 'dramatic' diseases). Fine, if you are slowing up together, you can have a laugh about your wrinkes, his inability to get it up (some form of impotence is common, about 40/50% of older men are a little or a lot diminished), and remember the good times.

I think to choose all that, if the person isn't the love of your life, I wouldn't go for it myself.

Mumsyblouse Tue 09-Apr-13 18:21:47

And AF, thanks for the belly laugh, that first remark was just hilarious.

VelvetSpoon Tue 09-Apr-13 18:35:21

I'm a bit on the fence about this, and can see the good and the bad in age gap relationships...

On the one hand my parents had a 16 year age gap and a terrific relationship until my mum died in her early 50s (which left my dad heartbroken, being so much older he had always expected to go first).

On the other when I was 24 I was in a relationship with a man 20 years older than me. At the time I thought he was so wonderful, looked so young etc - with many years hindsight (I am now 40) I can see he looked like my dad, and the relationship was hugely inappropriate on many levels (the fact we worked for the same law firm and that he was the partner supervising my training contract being the main one).

Sex was awful, I was very inexperienced but even so knew it was bad. It was slow, boring and went on for hours - and not in a good way. Plus he used to do a running commentary of what he was doing, just before he was doing it. The sentence 'and now I'm going to withdraw and put on a condom' is forever etched into my mind hmm.

The thought that if he hadn't dumped me (after doing all the running, a few months in he strongly suggested I went off and found someone my own age) I would have spent the last 16 years having terrible sex, and now be tied to a slightly saggy old man about to hit retirement - when I am still full of life, go out lots and look 5-10 years younger than my age - is pretty horrifying.

OP, I think maybe if you've always been someone who likes a quite life etc it could work longterm, but you may well change how you feel as you get older, and I would be concerned about the novelty wearing off...

welcometomysillylife Tue 09-Apr-13 18:37:16

If you have been seeing each other for 6 months, why have you had sex only once? (especially as it seems to be a priority for you.) And no disrespect to the man in question, but surely the only way is downhill after 60.

BranchingOut Tue 09-Apr-13 19:13:29

There was a good thread a while back called something like: 'Aibu to not want to support DH' or 'DH retirement plan'.

Lots of different people in age-gap relationships posted.

praying4winter Tue 09-Apr-13 19:16:57

Skinnywhippet - it's not that it feels a novelty; we met purely by chance and I didn't expect to feel anything for him, he says the same...it just kind of felt right to be together.

He is working, but so am I - I've always been one to earn my own money so whether he's working or not is irrelevant to me.

I'm not only drawn to older men; I'd met up with a 30 year old guy just before I met my current partner a few times and we just didn't have the same connection that me and my partner do.

I think the only reason I'm so unsure about is you just hear so many negative accounts of AGR's, and my partner himself was saying he was worried about me feeling tied down once I'd hit my 'prime' in my 40s.

issypiggle Tue 09-Apr-13 19:26:15

theres a 30+ age gap in ours, and we've been together 2 years. i wouldn't have it any other way.

i didn't rush straight into it and thought long and hard about it and decided to go for it and i wouldn't change it.

we both sat down and chatted about it.

we're happy and it works. age is just a number.

praying4winter Tue 09-Apr-13 19:30:35

Aww issypiggle that's nice to hear.

Forgot to say before; I've never been a massively 'relationshippy' person anyway - the relationship with my last ex wasn't brilliant, he was quite off-and-on with me so I have pretty much brought my daughters up on my own.

I don't feel like I need to be in a relationship to be complete or anything like that, its just I met this guy, we clicked instantly and I feel very strongly towards him. Obviously long term equals better when you have children involved too, but not necessarily 'for life'.

He just seems to worry a lot about what I might think about the age difference, and nothing I say seems to convince him I won't run off with someone younger in 10-20 years time...

AnyFucker Tue 09-Apr-13 19:34:18

Rosie, I think you must have mislaid your SOH, dude

AnyFucker Tue 09-Apr-13 19:37:33

...and do I know you ?

issypiggle Tue 09-Apr-13 19:40:23

just take it slowly, you might find that you do become more 'relationshippy' (i like that word). and things will settle down and he'll settle.

llife is too short to worry about whats going to happen in the future. worry about now. and if you are both happy don't change it.

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