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Relationships: What’s the Ideal Age Difference?

Is there such a thing as an ideal age difference? Can someone be too old or too young for you? Does it apply to sugar relationships? Here’s what science, a popular formula and our experience have to say about it:

The ideal age difference according to science

A recent study by researchers from the Emory University of Atlanta involving 3,000 participants showed that the smaller the age gap between two people in a relationship, the better. Couples with an age gap of 2 years or less are the most likely to stay together in the long run.

couple with an ideal age difference

According to the same study, couples with an age gap of 5 years face an 18% chance of separation. This rate rises to 39% among couples with a 10-year age gap and to a surprising 95% among those born 20 years apart.

That makes sense, considering that people born around the same time are more likely to have grown up in a similar societal environment and have a similar cultural background. Think about how much more you have in common with your siblings or cousins than with your parents.

Science vs. a 100-year-old formula

happy couple at beach

If you’ve ever read anything on this topic, you are very likely to know Max O’Reel’s age gap formula: half your age plus seven. What does it mean?

As he was talking to men about women, it means that if you are a man, you should look for women who are at least half your age plus seven. If you are a woman, on the other hand, you can find out your partner’s ideal maximum age by subtracting seven from your age and multiplying the result by two.

But think about it: the average sugar daddy is in his mid 40s and the average sugar baby is in her early 20s. If we apply this formula to these numbers, it would mean that sugar daddies should date women above 29 and sugar babies should date men under 30… which is far away from the reality of sugar relationships.


Considering the latest studies, century-old wisdom and the reality of sugar relationships, it’s safe to say that the former don’t apply to the latter. There are hundreds of examples of successful sugar relationships with a considerable age gap out there to prove that sugar relationships are anything but traditional and that statistics don’t apply to them.

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