Research Suggests The Perfect Age Gap To Ensure A Successful Relationship

When it comes to looking for a partner, age may or may not seem like a big deal. (It's just a number, right?) Perhaps you're into people older than you, or maybe you like your partners younger — it's all about personal preference. Studies show a majority of singles are interested in finding a significant other around the same age but aren't opposed to dating someone 10 to 15 years younger or older, according to Deakin University. In fact, nearly 8% of all heterosexual married couples in Western societies are more than 10 years apart in age.


Though many couples have found success dating a person who is nowhere near their own age, researchers say there's actually a perfect age gap that ensures a happy, healthy relationship. So, if you're single and looking to really hit it off with someone, it might be worth adjusting the age filter on your dating apps. 

Zero to three years is ideal

If you're not interested in dating someone significantly out of your age range, we have good news. Researchers state the ideal age gap between partners is anywhere from one to three years, and for a number of reasons, per Mindpath Health. One of the biggest factors to consider when dating someone above or below your age is emotional maturity, which is heavily influenced by life experiences. You're much more likely to have common experiences with someone closer to your age than a partner who is 10 to 15 years your senior or junior.


It's important to think about each other's priorities as well. In most cases, you're going to have very different concerns as a 25-year-old compared to someone who's in their early 40s. They might not be at the front of your mind when things start out, but down the line, you may notice your priorities don't align. For example, you may be looking to have some fun and take things slow. Meanwhile, they're ready to get married and settle down.

The point is, while it might seem fun to date someone much older or younger, when it comes down to it, keep the age difference to a minimum.

Don't go any higher than six

As we said, a one- to three-year age gap between romantic partners is ideal, but you can find success in a relationship with a four- to six-year age difference, too. While they weren't as satisfied as those partners closer in age, researchers discovered couples within this age gap are much happier than those seven or more years apart. Essentially, the greater the gap becomes, the less satisfaction you'll find with your significant other and relationship in general, Mindpath Health explains. Studies have shown divorce rates increase the further apart a couple is in age.


Marriages with a 10-year age difference are 39% more likely to end in divorce, and the numbers only get worse from there, Unhappy Marriage states. If you double the gap, you're looking at a 95% chance. When you and your partner are so distant in age, it's no wonder you don't have the same experiences and priorities, and unfortunately, that may lead to your relationship's downfall.