This week the press are all over Caroline Flack and her One Direction toyboy Harry Styles; she is 32 and he is 17, but does this strikingly obvious age gap equal immediate problems, and should we all be reverting back to primary school maths to calculate a possible love mismatch?
When I first heard about Caroline and Harry’s possible off stage X Factor fireworks, I assumed the rumour mill was putting in some overtime and a harmless flirtation had turned into something it wasn’t. Yet the truth will always surface, and credit to Ms Flack for openly admitting the romance and even challenging her haters by saying ‘what exactly am I doing wrong? age is nothing but a number.’ This statement will leave mothers locking up their sons and teenage girls hitting Twitter to declare their hatred for the woman who has simply found someone she gets along, who just so happens to be closer to the school leaver age than the ‘I’ve got two school kids’ one.
Personally I think everyone should cut Flack some slack, as I agree that she has done nothing wrong and merely refuses to bow to societies pressures to date someone her own age. No one knows what is actually going on between the two of them, but one thing’s for sure; they both seem genuinley happy. Many people have said that if the role was reversed, and a 32 year old man was dating a 17 year old girl, it would be totally wrong, but again this is purely down to how society views love, relationships and sex.
Other celebrity couples with large age gaps include Jay Z and Beyonce – 12 years, the recently divorced Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore- 15 years, and the biggest of them all; Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Doulgas – a whopping 25 years. Michael and Catherine are still going strong, despite having my whole life + 2 years between them, and they stand tall among the young Hollywood elite who marry quick and divorce even quicker.
The saying goes that women mature quicker than men, but even men who are pushing 40 have yet to find commitment maturity, and would rather reach for the Xbox than reach inside and get in touch with their feelings. I also think it is down to what stage you are at in your life, as a younger man can offer the fun element, where an older one has been around the block a bit more and done the mileage.
I have never had a relationship with an older man, or a much younger one for that fact, but that’s not to say I would ever rule it out, as how can you possibly know what equation works best for you if you aren’t willing to put in the work and tally up the sums; it could equal the relationship you have been dreaming of.
Image courtesy of company.co.uk; musicrooms.net.