August 31st, 2010

Dancing Thru

Writer's Block: Love is timeless

What is your opinion of relationships where there is a significant age difference between partners?

Age disparities run in my family. My grandfather was only twelve years older than my grandmother, so the age gap was trivial. That between my father and mother, who were much in love for the 22 years until her death, was almost 20 years, and it was a great love story. Same for my older half brother, who is 18 years older than his present wife. Both my father and brother were married first to women only a few years younger, and these relationships were strained, almost resulting in divorce many times with my father (his first wife eventually died of cancer), and in divorce only a few years later, in the case of my brother, who has now been happily married for over 35 years.

I get the prize, though. I am about to be married to my boyfriend of 3 years standing, who is 31 years my junior. We were great friends before the start of the relationship, and had to overcome a lot of societal skepticism and conditioning to move it to the romantic stage that was calling us, three years ago. It was great that we did, as it has been a phenomenally positive relationship for both of us, under some of the worst circumstances, because of the Great Recession. If anything, our relationship keeps getting better and better for both of us. We have, however, had to deal with societal prejudices. I can only compare it to relationships gays have with each other.

We fly under the radar a lot. People think Andrew is my son, sometimes, and tend not to notice the relationship, even if we are affectionate with each other. It doesn't register for them. But that's okay. We have found the partners of our dreams; it's just the universe is having a bit of jest with us, in throwing in the age difference. It's good.