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4 Tips for Making Age Gap Relationships Work

Plus, famous couples who show that love triumphs over age difference.
If you or your partner is a lot older than the other, your relationship will often be seen as being doomed to fail with no chance of success and some may even deem it to be weird or creepy depending on the context. In reality though, any relationship can fail and hooking up with someone who is the same age as yourself doesn't guarantee a long-lasting relationship. If you're currently involved in an age gap relationship, here are some tips from relationships experts on how to help things run as smoothly as possible.

1. Make sure you're together for the right reasons

For an age gap relationship to be successful, it needs to exist for the right reasons. You need to be on equal footing to one another. For example, one partner shouldn't be latching onto the other for a father figure to look up to or a toyboy to mother. Like any relationship, it works best if there is some common ground to bind you together. Any relationship can fall apart if you've got little in common but relationship experts tend to agree that this is more likely in an age gap relationship because you're less likely to have common interests than with someone closer to you in age. "Age gap relationships can bring developmental differences that are difficult to overcome," warns relationship expert, Amanda Kane. "Finding common ground on which to build a real relationship can be tough."

2. Be prepared for criticism and disapproval

If you're in an age gap relationship, you may well have already come up against opposition from family and friends who can't understand your decision. Even if you're blissfully happy, it's likely that the people around you won't be able to see beyond the age gap and will automatically assume that the relationship can't last. "Outsiders definitely judge age gap relationships," says Kane. "They are fascinated by the chemistry that fuels the couple."

If you're confident that your relationship is the real deal, all you can do is give it time and hope that they come to accept the relationship. Don't rise to the bait -- no matter how heated the criticism and disapproval may be -- as this can sour relations between you in the future.

3. Stick together

To have the best chance of making things work, you need to be a strong unit. There's a good chance that you'll encounter a fair amount of criticism and disapproval along the way so you'll need to stick together to deal with this as a couple and not let it break you. "If you are in an age gap relationship, it is important to reflect and understand your connection with your partner as well as your future goals as a couple," advises Kane.

4. Accept the age gap

Don't try to pretend that the age gap doesn't exist as this can also have a negative impact on your relationship. Don't try to make your partner act the same age as you either or you may cause resentment. "Openly discuss differences that arise because of age with your partner," Kane recommends. "Love brings together people of diverse backgrounds, so difference is always part of the equation. The key to any relationship is that old cliché, communication. Burying differences will only cause them to intensify."

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