Ask Madelaine: Response to ‘A Decade Apart or 2’


May Taing

Illustration design courtesy of May Taing.

By Madelaine Vikse, Editor-in-Chief

The topic for this week’s advice column focuses on a crush, but the complications and mixed reactions that this individual is facing from friends, family members and co-workers.

I have long struggled with a personal dilemma in which I always happen to like and have feelings for guys that are way older than me. I am currently 22 years old but have always felt as though I have a very old soul and can relate to people who are more further along in their life than people my own age. This past year I really fell for this guy who was 33 years old. He was my absolute dream guy. A true gentleman! All of my coworkers were saying we would make the perfect couple as they had personally witnessed our special chemistry and conversations. However, the main reason I never opened up to my “love” was because of a lack of encouragement and support from my family and friends. Most saying it was wrong, strange, nasty, unlikely to survive, and that he would have been in elementary school when I was just born… And because of that I am pretty sure he has now moved on with someone else, I may have lost him. This has truly been one of the hardest things I have ever had to deal with. Isn’t age just a number? What is your personal stance on this topic and how do I go about solving this unfortunate scenario? I would greatly appreciate any help I can get. Thanks! 

A Decade Apart or 2.

Even just from reading your submission I do get that feeling that you tend to be more mature and can understand why you tend to have feelings for individuals that are older than you.

Everyone has their own preferences, whether that’s based on age, looks, personality, interests or values. Your type seems to be based on the maturity level of the individual, which ends up meaning that the people you are interested in, at least a majority of them, are probably going to be older than you, and there is nothing wrong with that.

The age gap between you two is only 11 years and while some people may find that to be controversial, I feel like once someone hits the ages of 20 or 21 that it is a completely different mindspace than being 18, or even 19. 

You described this guy as a true gentleman, your dream man and that your co-workers told you that they felt that you would both make a perfect couple. I wonder, did any of your friends or family meet him or witness that chemistry firsthand as well?

Your friends and family should be supporting you even if they do not agree with the age gap personally — do what you want to do in order to be happy and feel satisfied in life. You can’t use your time to please everyone around you.

With that being said, if your co-workers saw your special connection and told you that they did, then your friends and family probably would see it over time as well. They have no room to judge, especially if they haven’t even met him.

The comments about how he would have been in elementary school when you were born don’t hold much weight since both of you are grown adults who are capable of making decisions for yourselves. There are many successful relationships with age gaps and just because your loved ones do not understand does not mean that it’s wrong. It is your choice to make.

My personal stance on this topic is that if the individuals involved are two adults capable of making their own decisions and that they are happy, that it is not my place to judge any part of the relationship, including if there is an age gap.

If you truly feel chemistry with this guy I think that you should go for it, or at least let him know that you are interested. If the connection between you two is as strong as you describe it, then I’m sure that it isn’t too late.

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