Dear Barb—The Age Old Question

Dear Barb:

I am in my late twenties and live at home with my parents and younger brother.  Recently, I began dating a guy who is 50 years old.  We get along great and his kids love me.  We seem so compatible; we are not aware of the age difference unless we look in the mirror or someone mentions it.  I have met his parents and siblings and they are okay with the age difference.  The problem is that my family have not met Greg yet and I’m a little apprehensive for them to meet him.  I have always been a daddy’s girl and I don’t think the age difference will sit well with him.  My mom might be more accepting.  I don’t know if I should prepare my parents for meeting my boyfriend, or should I just spring it on them, hoping they won’t notice the age difference.  Greg has a great personality and everyone likes him, so I hope my parents like him so much that his age is a non issue for them.  Do you have any advice on how I should handle this situation? Thanks, Kara.

Hi Kara:

I don’t know how long you two have been dating, but it’s probably time to, at least, tell your parents about him.  You could begin by telling them all the positive things, and emphasize how well you get along well.  Then you might mention he is older, but I don’t think it’s necessary to dwell on it or tell them how much older.  Usually parents are more concerned with how their child is being treated rather than how old the person is.  At your age, it is totally up to you who you date.  However there are things you need to be aware of while dating an older man.  You have already met his children and they like you, so that’s one hurdle out of the way.  Have the two of you discussed having children? Jealousy may be an issue, as you are so much younger that he may be insecure, especially when men your age are checking you out.  On the plus side, he most likely will be more financially secure than men your age.  In fact retirement may be figuring into his not too distant future.  The bottom line is how you both feel about each other; everything else can be compromised and negotiated.  So my advice would be to follow your own heart.  Initially your parents may react negatively, but give them time; they will adjust, once they see everything is good between you two and that he treats you well.  Good luck Kara and thanks for your question.

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