Does age difference matter in dating

What is the acceptable minimum age for your own (and others’) dating partners?When this question comes up in conversation, someone inevitably cites the “half your age plus seven” rule.With some quick math, the rule provides a minimum and maximum partner age based on your actual age that, if you choose to follow it, you can use to guide your dating decisions.The utility of this equation is that it lets you chart acceptable age discrepancies that adjust over the years. Let's examine it: How well does the rule reflect scientific evidence for age preferences?According to the rule, for example, a 30-year-old should be with a partner who is at least 22, while a 50-year-old’s dating partner must be at least 32 to not attract (presumed) social sanction. Does it match our scientific understanding of age-related preferences for dating? Researchers Buunk and colleagues (2000) asked men and women to identify the ages they would consider when evaluating someone for relationships of different levels of involvement.People reported distinct age preferences for marriage; a serious relationship; falling in love; casual sex; and sexual fantasies. Based on the figures Buunk and colleagues (2000) provided (and thus the numbers are only informed approximations), I replotted their data superimposing the max and min age ranges defined by the half-your-age-plus-7 rule.

When you are 17, contemplating marriage to someone who is 47, marriage is probably not a good idea.In matters of the heart, things do not always make sense, and neither do they always line up in a straight line.Timing is not always right, and people are not always in the same age group.The life experiences of a 17-year old are very, very different from a person who is 47!Our experience tells us that the closer in age two people in love are, the greater their chances of Building a Love That Lasts.

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