I know you've gotten similar questions in the past, but I keep going around in circles with myself about this: Why am I so uncomfortable with the thought of dating someone younger than I am?
I'm in my late 20s and my (three years) younger brother got married recently. A number of my brother's friends from high school were at the wedding. One in particular clearly took an interest in me and asked for my number, since we both live in the same city now.
He's smart (Ivy League undergrad, currently in law school), of the same minority religion, and is genuinely a nice guy. Basically, he's everything I've been looking for but haven't found in the past five years of being single. If he were older, I'd have absolutely zero doubts about going out with him.
But he's three years younger than I am. The last time I saw him, he was a senior in college and I was a graduate student. In part because of his age and in part because he looks young, I'm having a lot of trouble not thinking of him as a kid still.
Is this something I can/should get past? Thoughts?
– Too Young?, NY
A: He's not a kid, TY. He's a major catch. Please don't mess this up before you even try it.
You need to get these weird rules out of your head and remember that age doesn't necessarily have anything to do with maturity. Some people are ready to have a grown-up relationship at 25. It happens.
My guess is that you're thinking about where you were when you were his age and all that you've learned since then. That's understandable, but this guy is not you. He has his own timeline.
Also know that the more time you spend with him, the less you'll think about the age difference. He'll become a part of your present. Those old campus memories will be replaced and rewritten.
I'm not saying that this relationship will definitely work, but if it doesn't, it won't be because of three years. Let him be a grown-up with you. See how it feels. Keep seeing him and reevaluate in a few months.
Readers? When does this kind of age gap close? Why is this bothering her? Is it possible that he's not right for her for other reasons and she's attributing it to age? What should she do? Help.
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Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a new novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith here and on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.