Friday, January 25, 2008

Quick note about "age difference in dating"

I just wanted to point out that I am ~not~ against age differences. I just think the youngest person should be mature enough to understand the complications and implications of dating someone much older than themselves. If the youngest is mature enough to handle the relationship, then fine. I have no issues. Maybe something I wouldn't do myself, but I don't go out and roll my eyes at anyone out there with a big age difference. (Actually, I know it's not something I would do myself. Being 35, no matter how mature an 18 year old may be, I couldn't date him. I would find it inherently wrong. But hey, that's just me. At 18, I'd probably think dating a 35 yr old was super cool, but from the other side, looking at it from my viewpoint at the 35 year old? Yeah, i wouldn't be down with it.)

My niece is a 19 yr old girl who acts maybe 13 or 14. And I'm not exaggerating things here. I actually think she has a mental handicap that won't allow her to ~ever~ mature past 13/14. So a 33 yr old man is out of place given this information. Yes, she's "legal" but only by her actual age. She is not mature enough to date another "normal" 19 year old. Unless this man is also mentally handicapped and also never matured past being a teenager, this situation is wrong.

So in my poll, when I ask how young of a person you would date if you were over 30, the available answer options do not include "a very mature 19 yr old". The available options are really more geared toward maturity level ages. The answer of "18" means a normal 18 year old, not an 18 year old who acts way past his years. If you would date an 18 year old but would always add "but he acts like he's 25", then you would probably only date a 25 year old.

6 comments:

Monica Fayth said...

It sounds to me like the guy probably does have some type of maturity issues. Either that or he's just a pig. But since he's unemployed and sponging off your sister, I'm guessing he's got some issues.

He reminds me a lot of my sister's first husband. He was a few years older, and she was 18 when they got married. Before they started going out, he had also been going out with a girl my sister's age or even younger and had a kid with her. In less than a year from their wedding, they were separated on their way to divorce. By then, he had started dating another girl in high school. I think he went to senior prom with some girl at least until he was 25. In his case, I think his problem was that he was "top dog" while he was in high school and wanted to kinda hang on to that b/c really, he didn't have much else going for him. And I do think he had some mental/emotional issues (In fact, my sister once found his best friend-guy-in their bed with someone else, but she didn't stay long enough to see if it was her husband or not)

Claire said...

I think your box o' condoms was appropriate.

At some point, we have to let our teenagers grow up on their own. I have two stepsons who are teenagers. We hope they will screw up so that they learn from their mistakes! The best thing you can do is be a mentor or coach. Your niece will learn from the natural consequences. You just hope that the life lessons are very painful or drawn out.

MrsSpock said...

I totally agree with your box 'o condoms- I probably would have done it myself. I don't think I could ever allow even a 19 yr old daughter to just let a male friend sleep over like that- unless he was flamingly gay.

Claire said...

"You just hope that the life lessons are very painful or drawn out."

Looks like a left a word out, which was "not" as in "not very painful". Wow, I sound like a masochist here!

Jenera said...

In my opinion, it is highly inappropriate to date someone more than 10 years younger than you. ESPECIALLY when the youngest is under 25. There is so much growing up and maturing to do between the ages of 18 and 25.

Kaci said...

I think the age difference depends so much on both people's maturity, but it also depends on the age of the people. IMO, there's a huge difference in a 30yo dating a 19yo and a 51yo dating a 40yo. I'm thinking the guy must have issues. But really, WTF is your sister thinking? I think that's what astounds me the most. I love your gift though.