R.R. asks from New Orleans, LA on November 23, 2009
My daughter is involved with a man 18 years older than her. He is very youthful, and nice also. She is over 18, so there is nothing I can do except talk to her about it. Of course I am concerned about what the rest of the family will think, they do not know yet. They will soon with the holidays approaching. Any words of wisdom?
J.P. answers from Oklahoma City on November 24, 2009
If she is happy and he treats her well, then be happy for her and let the family know that you are accepting of the age difference. My husband is 11 years older than me. We had some road blocks with my family at first that were stressful on the family relationship. We have been married for over 11 years and have a beautiful daughter. My family loves him now, but it would have been nice for them to have accepted him earlier and saved us all the stress.
A.F. answers from St. Cloud on November 24, 2009
My friend got married last year to a man 24 years older than her. She was 19 when they married. They have a beautiful marriage and just had a baby. She said that people's comments were hurtful to them but the support of their families made all the negative comments pale in comparison.
So, all I can say is support your daughter and be very welcoming to her boyfriend and if someone says something negative, counter it with something positive.
I hope you have a wonderful, stress free holiday!
J.F. answers from Fayetteville on November 24, 2009
Why do you have to explain your daughters she is over 18 and this is her choice not yours. I dated a man that was older than my father and he treated me the best that I had every been treated and also treated my father and mother with respect and they liked him better than anyone I every married close to my own age. I regret that I let his age be a factor in not marrying him since I would have had a happy marriage while he was alive instead of two unhappy marriages by the time I was 30.
If he makes your daughter happy and treats her well and you like him don't worry about what family members think. If anyone makes comments about him being older you can either ignore them or just change the subject or tell them they should discuss it with your daughter.
Age is only a number not the whole person.
G.B. answers from Tulsa on November 24, 2009
I have lots, and lots, of relatives and several of them are/have been in this type relationship. All of them have lasted entire lifetimes. Older men usually are more established, more mature, they just have more life experience to fall back on when trials come. These relationships aren't a big deal. If he treats her well then it sounds like she has found a good man.
K.W. answers from Tulsa on November 24, 2009
If he treats her with respect and love, why should it matter what the rest of the family thinks? If he is good for your daughter, and the rest of the family cares about her well-being, they will grow to love him because he makes her happy. Women often mature more quickly than men, so they may actually be well-suited for each other. Just introduce him as her boyfriend, or however they refer to each other, and if anyone has a comment to make, ignore it.
A.M. answers from Oklahoma City on November 24, 2009
If any comments are made, you could take them with stride, not defensively. Say something like, "I know! Isn't it great! I love that she is with someone who is mature and has experience with relationships. If the age factor makes it tough though, I will definitely be there for her in any way I can."
A.D. answers from Pine Bluff on November 25, 2009
My sister is getting married soon for the 2nd time. Her first husband was white (like our family's heritage) - uneducated, could never hold a job, was into drugs, and other problems. Her new husband-to-be is a wonderful man, college degree, gainfully employed (at the same place for several years), funny, smart, caring - and happens to be black - which, where we are from, tends to raise some eyebrows. But they're ecstatic to have found each other and to be beginning the rest of their lives together.
I see the situations as similar, in that both of their relationships have factors that are bigger to "others" than to them. Kudos to your daughter for seeing past the little things to happiness. Hang in there, mama! It will be OK!
H.D. answers from Lafayette on November 24, 2009
No need to explain anything...I'm sure it will be fine. Chances are - YOU are more worried about this than anyone else and you might be making this a bigger deal than what it really is. Hang in there Mama!!! :)
L.C. answers from Montgomery on December 04, 2009
If family members have something to say to you you simply smile and say if she likes it then I love it! being supportive is the best thing to do as long as your child is not in harms way! Let them go gossip among themselves and not involve you or your daughter!