Does age really matter or is it just a notion that society has taught us to believe? Find out how three women handle the age factor in their relationship.
There was a time when seeing an older woman and younger chap together was the sort of thing you’d only see in Hollywood. Remember Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon who had a 11-year gap? They decided to call it off after five years into the marriage. Despite the divorce, the pair remains one of the friendliest exes in Hollywood. Also, let’s not forget that Madonna and Jennifer Lopez both dated men who were much younger. Similar to a lot of other May December relationships, they also ended in shambles.
But let’s not be stereotypical about the matter. There are also some similar types of relationships that have worked out e.g. the newly-appointed president of France, Emmanuel Macron, 39 and his wife Brigitte, 64. She was his teacher in school when he was just 15 years old!
All the above examples are from the West, which is supposed to be liberal and more tolerant of these kinds of relationships. And yet, these women still faced their fare share of backlash from the media with condescending titles like ‘cougar’ casually thrown at them.
So what’s the big deal of dating a younger man – especially in the context of the more conservative Asian society? We had the chance to speak to three Malaysian ladies who gave us their honest opinions.
1. Siti Salwa Mohd Alias, 33, Manager
Husband Muhammad Ariff is four years younger
From the get-go, Siti’s family and friends weren’t too keen on her choice of dating someone younger — her friends would even pass comments and say that he’s a tad too young for her. Fortunately, she never took their comments to heart and understood that their intentions were genuine. Instead, she gave them the time and space to get to know him and soon enough, everyone opened up and looked at him beyond his age. Siti and her husband tied the knot in 2015 after dating for five years and eight months ago, they welcomed their first child.
AGE IS JUST A NUMBER
“We both believe that age should never be a barrier. For me, whether it’s someone old or young, all that matters is if they’re a mature and responsible individual. Don’t allow age to dictate how you feel towards someone. Get to know the person and practice tolerance – even if your partner is younger than you, be sure that mutual respect between both of you exist all the time.”
BEHAVIOUR TRANSCENDS AGE
“I actually didn’t even know his age when we first started going out and I wouldn’t have guessed that he was actually younger because of his mannerisms. His calm and mature manner resembles someone much older. I am truly lucky to have met someone that’s extremely understanding, smart and carries out his duties as a husband and father exceptionally well. Also, perhaps the fact that he is the eldest in the family also explains why he carries himself the way he does.”