While on air last week some people asked questions about age and relationship. While some are older than their partners and some others are younger. The questions were from both male and female and I thought of doing this write up to help as many as may need the advise contained in here.
First you all need to understand that there is no law on marriage that I am aware of that stipulate age for people in relationship. However, it is important to say that the following persons are ineligible for relationship as they are barred by law for contract and to participate in decision making like voting etc;
- An infant: An infant is a child. He or she is ineligible for relationship
- A minor: A minor is someone below the voting age. So, if the voting age in your country is 18, a minor is anyone below 18 years old.
Relationship with anyone in category 1 and 2 above is regarded immoral and illegal as none in the two categories can make sound judgement by themselves.
- An insane person: Anyone whose reasoning is impaired by reason of mental derangement is not suitable for relationship.
So, if you are interested in someone who does not fall into the above 3 categories, you are good to go provided the age gap between both of you is not too wide. Like I said on air on Sunday 1st of February, 2015, the age difference between two people in a marriage bound relationship should not ideally exceed 10 years. My reasons for this will be shared shortly.
SO, WHO SHOULD BE OLDER; THE MAN OR THE WOMAN?
The truth is that generally there are more relationships that men are older than their partners. And that seem to be the norm but it is not out of order if your fiancee or wife is older. Again, let the gap not be wider than 10 years.
Let me profile the likely consequences that may occur if your partner is astronomically (say 12-20 years) older;
- There may be generational gap between the two of you if your partner is older by 10 or more years. If your partner is not the type that moves with the positive trend of times, that gap can become a serious challenge if care is not taken. Age ought to be an advantage but it may be a relationship liability where the partner is rigid and not seeing the need to be flexible with the trends of time and not open to the dynamics of change.
- Death is not a respecter of age as people die at any age. However, there is every likelihood that the older of the two of you may go first. So, if you are 26 and your husband is 46, when you are 56, he is 76. If your marriage foundation is not solid and both of you are not financially sound, the death of one may mean that the education of the children will suffer. Raising children in old age is not an easy task neither is it an easy thing as a widow or widower. It is better when the family (Father, mother and children) all grow old together.
- Medically, it has been said that sexual drive changes with age. So, if your partner is much older, he or she can also become older sexually. The human physiology changes differently for both men and women. Women step into menopause from age 45, when sometimes the man is still sexually active and vibrant. Also, men have very low sexual drive differently from certain ages in their life cycle. It may become a serious issue if your husband becomes ‘’dead’’ sexually when your libido is still sound, active and asking for more!
WHAT DO I DO IF MY PARTNER IS OLDER?
Before wedding and marriage, talk about it very well. Let him or her know that the love between both of you transcends age. Be open and sensitive to his or her ego. The place of the husband and that of the wife has been defined by God in the Bible and by the physical and emotional make up of men and women. Endeavor not to tell your friends and family members if your fiancee is the one that is older. Some people will discourage you outrightly if you tell them your fiancee is older. Just make sure you discuss it thoroughly and get her to see you as a husband and not as one of her younger ones. It is better to resolve this before stepping into marriage, so that you will not be sleeping on a keg of gun powder. Once someone is called a husband, irrespective of whether you are older or not, he must be respected and regarded as one. Nobody will respect the spouse you ridicule and disrespect! And when he or she is not respected, you also share part of the ridicule and disrespect!!
Feelings, emotions and convictions about love between two people (of opposite sex) usually start like fire in dry harmatan. You just suddenly realize in the course of interaction that the person your heart is tingling for is older than you and you just don’t want to give a damn! Then I say to you- GO AHEAD! But consider the issues I raised above as the love flame consume both of you. Most issues that people fight in marriages were already sitting quietly waiting for an opportunity to manifest. It is better to kill the root of the iroko before it becomes a tree!
SO, WHAT IF GOD SAYS GO AHEAD?
If you heard God say to you directly (not through anybody) that you should marry someone that is much older than you, PLEASE go ahead. Why? The foolishness of God is wiser than the wisdom of men. However, be sure you heard Him accurately! God knows what nobody else knows!
People have different motives for going into a relationship. Let your motive for the relationship be marriage and let it be pure. Agape love (unconditional love) is the love that will last in any relationship. Not love induced by money, position, power, material thing, pity for the person, or family wealth and influence. Like I always say all the time, your motive for the relationship (nay marriage) is what will sustain the relationship or marriage. If your motive is pure the relationship will stand the test of time or crumble if otherwise. The absence of what took you into the relationship will be the end of the relationship!
Ladies and gentlemen, keep the love aglow, keep the relationship going but thread carefully with your eyes wide open as you journey on in your relationship.
‘’There is nothing new under the sun. If it is new, it is not true. If it is true, it is not new’’ Pastor Christian Ike
Adegboyega writes regularly on his blog- www.adegboyegailori.com
He is the author of many christian books (such as Fighting Temptation (Forwarded by Dr Tunde Bakare), Prosperity of the Righteous, Intelligent Christianity etc) available at Laterna Ventures, 13 Oko Awo Street, V/I, Latter Rain Assembly Book shop, Plot 4 Akilo Road Ogba, Lagos, RCM Bookshop, RCCG redemption camp, Km 46, Lagos Ibadan Expressway).
You can follow him on twitter (@gboyegailori) and facebook or listen to him every Sunday on ‘’#Sincerely men’’ with Damirez between 5.00pm-7.00pm on Top Radio 90.9FM