Here’s a topic I’m surprised I’ve never tackled: the age gap between would-be boyfriends and girlfriends.
When I first ventured into the world of online dating, I had my own self-imposed cut-off for dating women younger than me.
It was a simple enough formula. I figured that is somebody was young enough to have been a high school student of mine at the start of my teaching career, then they were too young to date. This was no hard-line age gap set in stone. I just figured that anybody that young was young enough to have been seen as a child in my eyes was too young for me to date. The problem with this rationale is, just like Matthew McConaughey‘s character of Wooderson says in Dazed and Confused, “I get older, they stay the same age“
The reason I bring the subject up is because I have been talking to someone ( I will call her Shipping & Receiving) is 14 years younger than me. She is 33. Under my original, self-imposed rule, this woman would be too young for me to date, as she could have, conceivably been a student of mine at the start of my career
Call me Mr. Robinson
I’m doing a little research on the subject now. I wanted a formula for determining if someone is too young to date. A good one can be found at this link here.
To make a long story short, or in the event that you don’t want to bother clicking on the link above, this rule states that you can take the difference in the ages of you and the other person, double them and add seven years. If the person in question is at least that old, then it is okay to date them. Under this “PLUS7 rule“, Shipping & Receiving is still too young for me to date. Yikes! Seriously, I originally began writing this post A while ago and my math was actually off. I thought she fell within the +7 rule.
But that is why I called this post “Mr. Robinson” I feel a lot like Anne Bancroft’s character in “the graduate“. Now granted, Shipping & Receiving isn’t young enough to even conceivably be my child, or a friend of one of my children. For me, it goes back to the teaching thing. And, yes she would be too young for me to date under either rule. The problem is she’s pretty hot and she’s really into me. She has admitted to me that she has also dated men even older than I am, so I’m sure that plays into her attraction to me.
And as far as in “age gap” is concerned, or how old is too old; I look at it the same way that Justice Potter Stewart once tried to famously define pornography in 1964 by saying: “I know it when I see it“. I will know when someone is too young for me to date. It doesn’t have to be an ironclad, bottom line number. In the end, it all truly comes down to a matter of maturity. I’ve dated 40 somethings who had the work ethic of a carrot. I’ve dated others in the same age group who could not wrap their heads around the commitment that is involved in being a parent. By all accounts, Shipping & Receiving seems mature; more so than I would have expected – at least as far as relationships are concerned. Over time, I’ve learned that the doesn’t manager her anger real well. That‘a not to say she needs “anger management” classes; rather, she still has a little growing up to do in this regard.
The jury is still out in this one.