Lenae from OK wrote:
Sean, I have been seeing a man that is quite a bit older than me. He is 43 and I am 21. We’ve been seeing each other for about 6 months and despite his constant travel for work (4-5 days a week), we have gotten along really well. I asked him the other night if we were official though and he said he didn’t know if that could happen. He said that people at his work and in his family may judge him for dating someone so young and his kids (who are 10 and 11 and live with their mother in another state) may find it awkward as well. So, here I am, feeling like a dirty secret rather than an appreciated and loved woman. What do I do?
I am assuming you know what your boyfriend does for work and that you know for a fact he isn’t in a marriage or something like that. If I am wrong there, let me know and I may have to rethink my approach.
Age is a factor here in the US. In Europe, Asia, and other continents, age isn’t such a big deal. It’s not even a big deal here in Hollywood, but that’s Hollywood. People get away with murder due to a improperly fitting glove in Hollywood. Here in the remainder of the US, we have a “tradition” tradition, and that means we are usually more likely to look back before looking forward. We do what our parents did (with tweaks), we behave as our society did (with tweaks), even our politics refer to getting back to the way things used to be.
It’s unfortunate though that we are so stuck on our past ways of living, because it really hinders our growth as a society. Hell, if Olivia was 20 and came home from college with a 28 year old I think I’d have a problem with it, but it’d be simply a matter of me getting to know the person first. Age shouldn’t be an issue past the age of 20 as long as both parties are mature, intelligent, have priorities set for their future, and have though things through (I think many times, we’re so caught up in the adventure of dating someone older that we don’t think things through).
Many people would tell you to forget this guy and move on with someone your own age, but I disagree. I also don’t think you should feel like a dirty secret either. My advice to you is that you sit this guy down for a talk and tell him you’d like a relationship. Explain to him how you feel and ask him to explain how he feels. If you two are on the same page, then there should be no problem once you talk things through. If you’re not on the same page, maybe it’s time you just move on…not necessarily with a younger guy, but just move on to someone who can care for you like you deserve.