Mindy DeSeta met her husband when she was 25 and he was 43.
While she was initially worried about the age gap, she said the relationship also comes with perks.
DeSeta credited her older husband's business experience with helping her open her own company.
Dr. Mindy DeSeta, a Miami-based licensed mental health counselor and sexologist, first met her husband through their friend group when she was 25 and he was 43. They casually dated on and off, both hesitant to fully jump in due to their 18-year difference in age.
But after two years of going back and forth, they still had feelings for each other. So they decided to pursue a more serious relationship.
"We then gave it that second try, but really acknowledging that there is this age gap and some of the challenges that we could be up against," DeSeta, now 33, told Insider.
After a year of officially dating, the couple tied the knot and now have a one-year-old son.
Like any other couple, they've experienced challenges in their age-gap relationship. But DeSeta also said it comes with perks.
DeSeta became a young stepmother
DeSeta was 27 when they began the serious part of their relationship and took on the role of a stepmother to her husband's daughter from a previous relationship, who was eight at the time.
"I was really young," she said. "If you're with someone who's older, you're young coming in as a stepmom or a stepparent and you have no formal training."
She was also worried about what her friends and family would think of the relationship. Even if people didn't say anything to her directly, she said she feels "there's always some internal judgment" from others.
But over time, it became easier for her to cope with. "I think living in Miami has been huge because nobody looks twice at our age difference down here," she said. "It's very common."
DeSeta's husband helped her achieve her career dreams
One perk to dating someone older, DeSeta said, is that they can help walk you through life experiences that they've already been through — including career milestones. "They've been through it and they can almost give you that reassurance," she said.
With her husband's help, DeSeta opened her own boutique therapy service in Miami, where she offers individual and couples therapy, as well as sex therapy and hypnotherapy.
"He is entrepreneurial at heart, and he had learned so many lessons on how to build a successful business through his 20 years ahead of me," she said. "So I was able to come in and really take his guidance and build a successful practice on the first try."
They have different energy levels, but make compromises
DeSeta said she and her husband, who is now 51, are "very active" and enjoy wakeboarding together. But their age gap also means they have different energy levels.
"I was used to a life of going out, living in the city, and at his age, he was used to Friday nights at home," DeSeta said. "After a long week, he was mentally and physically tired when I would just keep bouncing."
She said how they spend weekends together is one of the compromises they've made as a couple. DeSeta said she'll either go out without her husband or stay in on Fridays, but then they'll do things together the rest of the weekend.
Since having a child, these differences have come out more."I have a lot more energy than he does," she said. While her husband had raised a child before, she said it was "a surprise for him" to have less energy with age.
"He thought being active, he'd be able to get up five times a night and go to work the next day," she said. "Absolutely not. And I think maybe that was a little bit of a shock to me, too."
But as in any relationship, she said communication is key. "He respects where I am in life," DeSeta said. "I also respect where he is in life."
Read the original article on Insider