What's the acceptable age difference in a relationship?

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Its kinda weird, for an example a 17 or 18 year old dating a 15 year old is a bit weird but fastfoward another 10 years and a 27 year old dating a 25 year old is more than acceptable, why is that :S

There is no limits, provided both parties are adults. The 16/18 age thing is only weird because at school you are separated into year groups, so the distance of one year is made more of a distance by the segregation of ages. This is why when you're 16 and dating an 18 year old it seems scandalous, but being 23 and dating a 25 year old is completely normal.

Its up to you, really.

I don't think I would date a guy younger than me, but my boyfriend's only like a month older than me.

When you're around teenage age it can be a bit complicated because of who's techincally an adult and who isn't.

Rule of thumb: There is ALWAYS a relevant XKCD comic for every situation. Here ye are.

image

I've always heard the acceptable low end was half your age, plus 7. I'm 23, so the youngest I should be dating is 18-19, which honestly seems pretty reasonable. As for the upper end, I suppose you can go as high as you feel comfortable with, but I wouldn't recommend going above 10-15 years older than you unless it's a real, bonafide "TWUE WUV" situation.

Half your age, plus 7 is a rule that's always served well. For upper boundary, you have to be in their half age plus 7 zone. I'm 22, I can date an 18 year old, seems fair.

There's a greater difference in maturation between a 15 year old and a 18 year old than between say a 25 year old and 28 year old. The former are still developing at a fast rate whilst the latter are pretty much fully formed mentally and so less difference.

It's like multiplication. If It's under 15, do it in your head.

But seriously, the "Half your age + 7" is what I've always heard.

Ordinaryundone:
I've always heard the acceptable low end was half your age, plus 7.

That's just a silly internet meme.

The real answer is there is no firm answer. 14 year old used to marry 40 year olds all the time and no one blinked.

The only reason why ages matter more when you are very young is compatibility. The reality is a 30 yr old and 35 yr old, all other things being equal, are on average of similar maturity, and life experiences.

A 10 yr old and a 15 year old are however on different planets physically, maturity wise, life experience wise, and even in activities enjoyed.

If you think back to when you were 14 and then again 16, you can see that even a year or two can make a monumental experience and maturity shift.

Kendarik:

Ordinaryundone:
I've always heard the acceptable low end was half your age, plus 7.

That's just a silly internet meme.

The real answer is there is no firm answer. 14 year old used to marry 40 year olds all the time and no one blinked.

People used to do all sorts of shit without blinking, like taking slaves and persecuting gays. Fortunately, both our morals and eyelids have evolved since then. The firm answer regarding those things today is definitely "that's fucked".

OT: The half plus seven rule stands. It allows a generous dating pool for each age bracket without falling into "that's just gross" territory. As for why? I don't know. I guess the younger the person is, the more it seems like you're taking advantage of their naivety and insecurity. Someone much older getting with someone relatively inexperienced with the world just seems predatory.

Kendarik:
That's just a silly internet meme.

It may well be a silly internet meme, but that doesn't make it any less of an apposite standard to operate by in most situations if not necessarily a rule of thumb. At any rate, the older you get, age disparity seems to matter less and less.

once both parties are over 20 its fair game for whos interested in whom.
I personally wouldn't date someone over 28 (im 22).
But i dont judge at all if both parties are over 20 and not being manipulated. Their mature enough to decide for themselves.

(why 20 and not 18, i dont know, i just never known any really mature 18/19 year olds, past 20 people do seem to mature more, maybe thats just how it is here, maybe its different elsewhere in the globe)

manic_depressive13:

Kendarik:

Ordinaryundone:
I've always heard the acceptable low end was half your age, plus 7.

That's just a silly internet meme.

The real answer is there is no firm answer. 14 year old used to marry 40 year olds all the time and no one blinked.

People used to do all sorts of shit without blinking, like taking slaves and persecuting gays. Fortunately, both our morals and eyelids have evolved since then. The firm answer regarding those things today is definitely "that's fucked".

It's "fucked" based on your own opinion only. Nothing more. Other people have other opinions, there is no "definitely".

For example, in Australia where you live the age of consent is 18 for marriage. In Japan its 20. Are you barbarians because you picked a different arbitrary number? In the US of course a good number of states allow marriage at ANY age, as long as you have parental and/or court consent.

OT: The half plus seven rule stands. It allows a generous dating pool for each age bracket without falling into "that's just gross" territory. As for why? I don't know. I guess the younger the person is, the more it seems like you're taking advantage of their naivety and insecurity. Someone much older getting with someone relatively inexperienced with the world just seems predatory.

"I don't know" is the key to what you say above, it is totally without any foundation.

Kendarik:
It's "fucked" based on your own opinion only. Nothing more. Other people have other opinions, there is no "definitely".

For example, in Australia where you live the age of consent is 18 for marriage. In Japan its 20. Are you barbarians because you picked a different arbitrary number? In the US of course a good number of states allow marriage at ANY age, as long as you have parental and/or court consent.

It is not my opinion only. It is the opinion of enough people in my society that there are laws prohibiting those things. The only morality is the collective morality. To the Japanese perhaps we are barbarians.

OT: The half plus seven rule stands. It allows a generous dating pool for each age bracket without falling into "that's just gross" territory. As for why? I don't know. I guess the younger the person is, the more it seems like you're taking advantage of their naivety and insecurity. Someone much older getting with someone relatively inexperienced with the world just seems predatory.

"I don't know" is the key to what you say above, it is totally without any foundation.

Are you sure you're not angry enough? The "I don't know" indicated that I can't can't say for certain why pedophilia or significant age gaps in relationships aren't smiled upon, but I have a general idea which probably constitutes at least part of the reason.

But of course you don't mind pedophilia or slavery. You're a hardass little nihilist. You'd kill me as soon as look at me, eh?

As long as both are 18+ and consenting, why should it even matter?

Eh, I had a 15 year old girlfriend when I was 19 and know quite a few people who have had/are having relationships on a similar scale. It can work, provided the younger party is mature enough.
As for acceptance? It mostly depends on the culture, as I see it. Where I live age of consent is 13 or 14, I believe, anything above is rather silly, in my opinion (and it's not like it'd stop teens from screwing anyway). In the end it all comes down to whether the parties involved are consent with the relationship or not. Everything else is irrelevant.

I don't care how big the gap is as long as both parties are genuinely in love. I actually have a bigger issue with two people close together in age that get together without loving each other than I would a 60 year old and an 18 year old who were in love.

Someone came up with a formula:
Your Age/2+7. For example, 14/2+7=14, 28/2+7=21. The answer is the minimum age you should date, if you follow the formula. It also comes to a minimum limit at 14.

manic_depressive13:
As for why? I don't know.

It's actually just a pretty basic linear recurrence relation. High-school maths.

manic_depressive13:

Kendarik:
It's "fucked" based on your own opinion only. Nothing more. Other people have other opinions, there is no "definitely".

For example, in Australia where you live the age of consent is 18 for marriage. In Japan its 20. Are you barbarians because you picked a different arbitrary number? In the US of course a good number of states allow marriage at ANY age, as long as you have parental and/or court consent.

It is not my opinion only. It is the opinion of enough people in my society that there are laws prohibiting those things. The only morality is the collective morality. To the Japanese perhaps we are barbarians.

OT: The half plus seven rule stands. It allows a generous dating pool for each age bracket without falling into "that's just gross" territory. As for why? I don't know. I guess the younger the person is, the more it seems like you're taking advantage of their naivety and insecurity. Someone much older getting with someone relatively inexperienced with the world just seems predatory.

"I don't know" is the key to what you say above, it is totally without any foundation.

Are you sure you're not angry enough? The "I don't know" indicated that I can't can't say for certain why pedophilia or significant age gaps in relationships aren't smiled upon, but I have a general idea which probably constitutes at least part of the reason.

But of course you don't mind pedophilia or slavery. You're a hardass little nihilist. You'd kill me as soon as look at me, eh?

Oh come on. On the one hand, you're being moral because your society agrees with you, but on the other hand when society did things differently, it wasn't? You're just saying whatever pops into your head.

Also nice pile of strawmen.

TrilbyWill:

manic_depressive13:
As for why? I don't know.

It's actually just a pretty basic linear recurrence relation. High-school maths.

...What? The fact that a two or three year age gap in a relationship is far more socially acceptable later on in life than it is in one's teenage years has nothing to do with high school maths.

sleekie:
Oh come on. On the one hand, you're being moral because your society agrees with you, but on the other hand when society did things differently, it wasn't? You're just saying whatever pops into your head.

It was considered moral at the time. It isn't anymore. Is that really a difficult concept to follow?

sleekie:
Also nice pile of strawmen.

If you have a match we can make a bonfire.

I think it was How I Met Your Mother that established the rule: "Your age plus 7, divided by 2."

manic_depressive13:

Kendarik:
It's "fucked" based on your own opinion only. Nothing more. Other people have other opinions, there is no "definitely".

For example, in Australia where you live the age of consent is 18 for marriage. In Japan its 20. Are you barbarians because you picked a different arbitrary number? In the US of course a good number of states allow marriage at ANY age, as long as you have parental and/or court consent.

It is not my opinion only. It is the opinion of enough people in my society that there are laws prohibiting those things. The only morality is the collective morality. To the Japanese perhaps we are barbarians.

OT: The half plus seven rule stands. It allows a generous dating pool for each age bracket without falling into "that's just gross" territory. As for why? I don't know. I guess the younger the person is, the more it seems like you're taking advantage of their naivety and insecurity. Someone much older getting with someone relatively inexperienced with the world just seems predatory.

"I don't know" is the key to what you say above, it is totally without any foundation.

Are you sure you're not angry enough? The "I don't know" indicated that I can't can't say for certain why pedophilia or significant age gaps in relationships aren't smiled upon, but I have a general idea which probably constitutes at least part of the reason.

But of course you don't mind pedophilia or slavery. You're a hardass little nihilist. You'd kill me as soon as look at me, eh?

A moral relativist and a pragmatic walk into a bar...

Seriously though I always found normative moral relativism to be a bit off. While I agree with the overarching stance that there needs to be some room for tolerance (as most would) it has its limits. Taking it to the extremes if someone murders for their perceived good I'm not going to tolerate it. It also never really explains the connection.

"There is no objective right or wrong -> You should be tolerant of other moral systems"

In fact I would argue that this implication is a contradiction.

Here's the issue with me.

people are stupid.

a 17 year old guy getting a 15 year old pregnant because of stupidity has real ramifications. If their parents don't approve and kick the teens out (I don't think that happens any more, but it could), how will they raise that costly baby and keep themselves fed? Not to mention the real strain on her developing body that is not finishing growing.

if a 27 year old guy got a 25 year old girl pregnant because of stupidity... well, tough. They are adults. They should have shit figured out in terms of supporting themselves. That's what comes with adulthood. And her body (unless she has am abnormal condition) is fine for childbirth.

TL:DR version, if the woman's body won't come to harm if pregnancy occurs and the entire family can be taken care of, knock yourself out.

recpatcha: prickle-cell onthsur. It's upset now that it knows I'm on to it.

I see a lot of the people know the (age/2)+7 rule... that is the acceptible standard! But it works for a male pretty much only. If the female is older then I haven't heard of any particular rule, as it doesn't seem to be frowned on as much!

Can anyone shed any light on this?

To me, it's kinda like this:

If the youngest or both partners are under 20, an age difference of about 3 years is acceptable to me. When both are above 20, it's gets a little hard to judge.

Edit: The XKCD formula is pretty good, now I tested it.

TheYellowCellPhone:
Rule of thumb: There is ALWAYS a relevant XKCD comic for every situation. Here ye are.

image

My boyfriend and I are just on the edge of that xkcd equation.

Boyfriend: 31

(31/2)+7 = 22.5

Me: 22.5 years old

He sold me my new gaming laptop, we discussed games like raging nerds, bam!

I'm not much of a 22 year old partier. I enjoy playing games and snuggling on the sofa with a good movie as does my new squeeze. Never thought I'd date someone this much older but we get along perfectly and it would have been a waste not to go for it.

Basically if you truly have things in common and seem to be on a similar level it can work. I see people try and kid themselves a lot in ANY relationship. You can often tell when you meet a couple whether or not they go well together.

I do sort of have my own rule which is "if they're old enough to be their father/mother then it starts getting creepy".
My boyfriend's boss is 39 and has got his 21 year old girlfriend pregnant. That makes him 18 years older than her - more than old enough to be her father. Noooooooo.

manic_depressive13:

TrilbyWill:

manic_depressive13:
As for why? I don't know.

It's actually just a pretty basic linear recurrence relation. High-school maths.

...What? The fact that a two or three year age gap in a relationship is far more socially acceptable later on in life than it is in one's teenage years has nothing to do with high school maths

That's why it works out at the difference it does. If you see an 83 year old with an 80 year old as more acceptable than an 18 year old with a 15 year old, that's your personal belief.

Kendarik:

Ordinaryundone:
I've always heard the acceptable low end was half your age, plus 7.

That's just a silly internet meme.

Actually it's been around a lot longer than that! I heard it way back when I was in school!

TrilbyWill:
That's why it works out at the difference it does. If you see an 83 year old with an 80 year old as more acceptable than an 18 year old with a 15 year old, that's your personal belief.

Yes, and I accept that. I just don't understand why you quoted me to tell me about maths when my question was clearly in a different context.

The only thing that matters is the legal limit. I am 27 and am doing a 16 year old. 16 is the legal age here so who cares what anyone else thinks?

Her father probably cares lol

Monkeyman O'Brien:
The only thing that matters is the legal limit. I am 27 and am doing a 16 year old. 16 is the legal age here so who cares what anyone else thinks?

Doesn't that end up weird? You'll reach 30 before she reaches/just reached 19.

Not that you should care about what people think, but I don't think that when I am 30 I wont be able to maintain a sex drive that matched a 20 year old.

ObsidianJones:
Not to mention the real strain on her developing body that is not finishing growing.

Uh... Say what? After 15 you won't be growing too much unless you started puberty really late.

Plus, I am pretty much convinced humans used to have children when they were 15. I don't know how could have we ever survived before we invented the consenting age.

So, I'd kinda like actual sources to those findings.

Hunter65416:
Its kinda weird, for an example a 17 or 18 year old dating a 15 year old is a bit weird but fastfoward another 10 years and a 27 year old dating a 25 year old is more than acceptable, why is that :S

because a 25 year old is done growing up and is mature enough to take responsibility for her life. In terms of teenagehood even a years difference your at entirely different stages in the cycle. When you both even out its not an issue because of that.

I suppose it would be fine if both people were at the same maturity level. I'm 26 and I'm friends with a 17 year old who is more mature than most of the people my age. However, every other 17 year old I've been around has been incredibly stupid and immature. So I guess it just depends on the people and the norms of their country.

I'd say 5 years on either side if you are atleast 23.

I however wouldn't do that myself, with every year I grow older, the older I consider some having to be to be a adult. For instance, I'm 24 and someone who is 19 will more often then not be a kid in my eyes.

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