age should not be a deterrent to exploring an adult, healthy, respectful and loving relationship.
For instance, having children, different life stages and expectations and health, different levels of fitness and social interests/attitudes; there are probably many more that are unique to the couple, and we mustn’t forget personal age sensitivities.
But what really matters is the couple’s level of contentment.
The couple themselves don’t consider the age difference but do sometimes feel they have to justify and explain themselves, to reassure others that their love is based on nothing more than a wish to be together, mutual respect and a want to make one another happy.
These relationships have traditionally been looked at with suspicion, with clichÃ©s abounding.
'She’s only after his money.' 'He’s old enough to be her father.' 'Cradle snatcher.' 'Sugar daddy.' 'Toy boy.' to mention but a few, and it’s usually been that way, always the man older than the woman.
Many people we speak to think that a gap of 10 years is OK either way, but anything beyond this tends to raise a few eyebrows.
However, couples where there is an age difference don’t appear to have the same doubts and concerns, believing that it is a problem for friends and family not the couple.
As have Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas and Tom Cruise and Katy Holmes, plus many more both in the public eye and in the community generally.
Official statistics show that generally women in the UK marry men older than themselves, in 2000 the average age gap was just over two years.