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I've potentially just ruined my life

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AnOverthinker Tue 15-Sep-20 23:09:35

I have been with my fiancé for 4 years. I am 26 and he is 40. I have always been ok with the age gap now, but worried about later in life. I loved him enough to put it to the back of my mind, but whenever I am reminded of it and I allow myself to think of the reality I freak out massively and nearly end it with him.

Well tonight I've done just that but instead of thinking it, I said everything out loud. Everything's been good, planning our wedding, bringing up our kid then I read a thread on here this morning where a few people mentioned age gap relationships negatively and then I find myself in a google spiral reading all these horror stories and I freaked. Told him everything and he just said that's that because he can't become younger. I even told my family that I think I need to leave. I don't know if there's any coming back from this.

I am potentially about to throw away my family because of random people on the internet talking about my insecurity. Am I insane? I'm sat here just realising the damage I've done today and I feel sick to my stomach.

OP’s posts: |
TwixTwixtwoo Wed 16-Sep-20 12:18:18

There was 12 years between my grandparents, DGM's family were dead against their marriage but they were my benchmark for a happy, healthy relationship. They died within 4 years of each other and I don't think the age gap was ever really an issue after DGM's family had come round to the idea, they were very happy together. Life is uncertain OP, being happy now is more than many of us manage so I'd be focusing on that if I were you, the future is far too much of an unknown quantity to be affecting your decisions now.

JinglingHellsBells Wed 16-Sep-20 12:19:16


A 40 year old has no business being with a 26 year old. There are clearly reasons you feel this way, don’t ignore your gut. You have not ruined your life, your life hasn’t even started yet

This has to be one of the most odd posts I have read on this thread.

Either the poster is very young and to her 40 seems positively geriatric or ...well, she thinks a 14 yr age gap is 'dubious'.

So what about when I was 21 and my boyfriend was 34? Did he have no business being with me?

Or his wife, now 63 and him 78- and married for decades.

Some people have incredibly narrow lives or perspectives of relationships.

Justaboy Wed 16-Sep-20 12:53:41

You can't control or second guess what will happen in life

No control and some control you mean.

Mandatory: !!*! Death!!*!

Optional and mandatory: !!!Taxes!!!

As you weresmile

GlamGiraffe Wed 16-Sep-20 13:15:04


A 40 year old has no business being with a 26 year old.

Oh what a sheltered life you live.

Relationships arent about numbers for everyone. Love, friendship, values, beliefs, moral, goals, desires. If you share all thise things it goes a lot further than just being a similar age.

My DH is 20 years older than me. Weve been marriedfor 20 years, have 2 children, now have 2 houses, several successful business and are very close. You cannot judge any relationship on a single variable, least of all age, it's probably the most minor. There's a whole world of different people out there and a multitude of different happy relationship types, amongst those, ones with age differences.

Friendsoftheearth Wed 16-Sep-20 14:43:05

I find it strange that op posts about the serious reservations she has about HER relationship, that SHE is not comfortable about the age gap and what that might mean for her future, and we have an avalanche of wonderful examples and antidotes of why they work, not to mention 'getting help with your anxiety' posts, when actually op's anxiety could be rooted in the fact she feels uncomfortable with her current relationship!

Should we not put our own prejudices to one side, and actually listen to what she is saying. She has to lie to other people because she is embarrassed of the age gap, she is living a lie to accommodate something she is already not happy with.

Op for every great marriage with older men you read on here, there will be another ten younger wives that wake up one day and feel the same as you.

You are so young, sit down and really consider that it is you need and want out of life, then decide if he is the man for you. You will not get the chance to rerun your life again, so it is good that you are questioning whether this is still for you. We change a lot between the ages of 20 and 25, and maybe what felt right back then no longer works now. Just because you have a child, you do not have to stay. You never have to stay. Be happy, be young and be free if that is what you want.

Friendsoftheearth Wed 16-Sep-20 14:48:41

If you decide to come back op, I am sure there will be many people on here that would like to offer you some support either way. You won't be the first person to have felt this way, and definitely not the last flowers

Take care

ravenmum Wed 16-Sep-20 14:56:40

Should we not put our own prejudices to one side, and actually listen to what she is saying.
She said that she has PND and is off her meds, and that he is a good partner and dad, and she loves him and is happy.

Friendsoftheearth Wed 16-Sep-20 15:18:41

I don't think she did just say that raven and we can't assume anything about her MH.

ravenmum Wed 16-Sep-20 15:35:46

We can't assume that her mental health is good, especially those of us that recognise some of the patterns of panic she describes. We need to be very careful what advice we give.

tara738 Wed 16-Sep-20 15:36:03

I haven't read the full thread so apologies if this has been said, but are you sure the age gap is the only thing that prompted your actions OP?
When I was younger I was terrible at listening to my gut even when it was screaming at me to get out of a relationship. I broke up with men without even realising what I was doing, then would panic, break down, be sure I'd lost the love of my life, beg for them back. And then months later slowly begin to realise why I had broken away initially! And it was always the right thing to do - I just wasn't listening to myself.
So I guess what I'm saying is really have a big think and listen to your gut and process this properly. It might be that there's much more to your 'impulse' action than you think

ravenmum Wed 16-Sep-20 15:36:36

(She says herself that she has PND; not my assumption.)

AmICrazyorWhat2 Wed 16-Sep-20 15:38:46

Good advice, @Friendsoftheearth. It does sound as if the OP has serious doubts about her relationship.

ravenmum Wed 16-Sep-20 15:49:22

I am potentially about to throw away my family because of random people on the internet talking about my insecurity. Am I insane? I'm sat here just realising the damage I've done today and I feel sick to my stomach.
OP very rightly has serious doubts about ending the relationship based on advice from randoms.

AmICrazyorWhat2 Wed 16-Sep-20 16:06:45

Yes, but IRL she’s embarrassed to tell people get partner’s real age. That’s a bad sign if ever there was one! She not comfortable in the relationship, for some reason, not simply because of what she’s read online.

Friendsoftheearth Wed 16-Sep-20 16:35:36

raven I am aware that op had/has had PND and anxiety, but she describes this
Ive never accepted the age gap, more ignored it, hidden it from friends, lied about his age to colleagues, for fear of their opinions

That is not PND, she states she had doubts right from the start. She has pretended it doesn't bother her, that she can lie or cover for it, but deep down it does really bother her. I would say this has nothing to do with PND or anxiety but solid doubts that this relationship is not right for her.

Some have jumped on the PND aspect etc, and tried to reassure/guide her to get help etc or told she was wrong age gap marriages are great, but I wonder if she is finding it hard to articulate the real concerns she has?

Maybe it is simply his age, and that is okay as well. She was so young when she met him, maybe only now she is older and more mature can she see that she is no longer happy to with ignore her own feelings about his age, and live a lie. That kind of realisation should not have been shut down, it can take people decades to come to terms with their truth, their own fears etc and she came on here to share those fears about being a widow (and I for one don't believe they are misplaced to be fair to her)

I just feel we could have been much more supportive of op, and these threads are usually so helpful in digging to the point where the op will understand better themselves, and reach their own conclusions. Not always, but sometimes - and we didn't give her a chance to expand on why she feels the way she does, and now she has gone probably feeling even worse sad

PurplePansy05 Wed 16-Sep-20 16:54:36

Some posters have been really awful in their responses to OP.

OP, hope you're ok flowers FWIW, it seems you've been a bit concerned about the age gap for a while and your current circumstances have aggravated your concerns. PND and anxiety can do that to your brain. I might be wrong but reading your posts gave me that impression. Please talk to us when you're ready, if this is helping you rather than making you feel worse flowers

Paintedmaypole Wed 16-Sep-20 17:03:53

OP does not say that she is unhappy with her husband, she says that she has lied about his age to others for fear of their opinions. She has also said that she has been heavily influenced by opinions expressed on MN and that she is sufferring with PND. I think that gives us all a responsibility to stop being so free with our opinions when we know so little of her circumstances, other than to suggest that she sees her GP again and lays off making major decisions until she feels better. There may be a readon why she is so affected by what other people think.

DDiva Wed 16-Sep-20 18:40:17

You seem very sensitive about this, what exactly are you worried about?

Theres 10 years between dh and I I've not really considered it a problem. Tbh you never know what's around the corner, my h was diagnosed with a serious heart condition at 45. Lifes to short to hold back because of what ifs.........

Wandawomble Fri 18-Sep-20 14:05:48

10 years between me and my husband and 14 years between him and his ex.
His ex and I have no differences in terms of how mature we are or look.
He is a very young man for his age, he was a late developer and very shy around women.
The age gap doesn’t matter as he wasn’t predatory and I’m not a child. When I am 45 he will be 55. It’s not a big deal.
Don't let it be a big deal for you.

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