If you haven’t already noticed from the many studies we’ve commented on here on the blog, it seems researchers are extremely interested in decoding what it takes to have a perfect marriage. Everything from smoking pot together and having similar drinking habits to the size of your wedding can (supposedly) increase the success of your partnership. Fascinating stuff, wouldn’t you agree?
The latest set of stats to catch our eye comes, again, from data researcher Randy Olson, who has taken it upon himself to uncover all of the factors that influence marriage. This time his focus is on age, and more specifically how an age gap between spouses is a large predictor of whether or not a marriage will last. And, spoiler (and apologies to all the May-December romances out there): large age gaps do not bode well for happily ever after.
From a group of over 3,000 recently married and divorced Americans, Olson found that couples of the same age are least likely to divorce in comparison to those with a one- to 30-year age gap between them. Same-aged spouses were the least likely to split; couples with five years between them were 18 more likely to go their separate ways; and those with 20 years between birthdays were 95 percent more likely (oof) to end up divorced.
Luckily, as even Olsen himself points out—and as we all know—age does not necessarily have a bearing on maturity, and that is most definitely more of a factor in whether a marriage thrives or dies. Check out the rest of the data and Olson’s other marriage findings here.