DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am a single lady in my late 60s, but appear to be 20 to 25 years younger. I am in good health and enjoy youthful activities like badminton, Frisbee, swimming, canoeing and camping. My outlook and constitution have always been those of a younger lady.
I have met a law enforcement officer who is about 25 years younger than I. This gentleman is thoughtful, kind, sweet, handsome, very mature in a quiet way, and very ethical in his work. We met while participating in community projects together. He asked if I would consider a long-term relationship, stating that he had no issues with my older age.
As we talked, the gentleman stated he was looking for a lady who shared his outlook, ideation and values. He said that he was already taken with me, and asked whether I would be his lady and accept his ring.
I must confess to wishing I were younger, because I would be smitten with the sweet gentleman. Is it appropriate to be with a gentleman 25 years younger, if you find he is in your heart already and feels so close already in spirit?
GENTLE READER: What if Miss Manners said no?
Yes, this is a test. There is no etiquette rule that mandates the respective ages of an adult couple who want to marry. Society -- and relatives expecting a sizable inheritance -- may be otherwise biased, but they do not know what is in your and your gentleman's hearts.
If he truly is a gentleman and you are truly in love, then you have Miss Manners' best wishes. She suggests you ignore anyone who does not agree.