When it comes to new relationships, we often think about things like shared hobbies and common interests. But here’s something else to consider: the age gap. Science tells us that a big age difference, like 10 years or more, can bring challenges. However, there’s good news—there’s an ideal age gap for relationship success, and it’s not as big as you might think.
Finding the Perfect Age Gap
A study in the Journal of Population Economics looked into how age gaps affect relationships. It found that couples with a zero to three-year age gap tend to be more satisfied than those with a four- to six-year gap. Couples with a seven-plus year age difference reported even lower satisfaction.
The study suggests that different ages may make couples less able to handle challenges concerning money problems or health issues. Other life factors, such as having kids or retiring, also play a role. Interestingly, both men and women tend to be happier in their marriages when their partners are younger, but this happiness tends to fade after 6 to 10 years of marriage.
Understanding Age Gaps in Relationships
Every relationship is unique, and there’s no one-size-fits-all rule. If you feel a strong connection with someone with a bigger age difference, like a 10-year gap, don’t let statistics discourage you from building a life together. On the other hand, if you’re facing challenges connecting with someone due to a significant age gap, think about how it might affect your long-term compatibility. Remember, while statistics give us some ideas, the special connection between people is what truly shapes a relationship.
Love is a unique journey, and a thriving relationship involves effort and various contributing factors. While age gaps can provide insights into potential challenges, they don’t define the success of a connection. The bond between individuals is shaped by shared experiences, understanding, and mutual respect, factors that go beyond any statistical findings.
Bean soups are delicious. They can be cooked slowly on the back burner for literally hours. However, if you don’t have enough free time, skip the long simmer and cook them in the pressure cooker. Bean soups have the distinct advantage of tasting delicious, either way. Ever heard of Tuscan bean soup? Here is the recipe:
What Is Tuscan Bean Soup?
Long-simmered pots of bean soup are popular throughout Italy. This one takes a few shortcuts by using canned beans, but the flavor will be very similar to soups that have simmered for hours.
Ingredients for the Soup
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
- 1 large coarsely chopped large onion
- 1 clove of finely chopped garlic
- 1 stalk of coarsely chopped celery
- 2 thickly sliced medium carrots
- 3 springs of fresh oregano
- Black pepper, as desired
- 2 15-ounce cans of cannellini beans, or small white beans, rinsed and drained
- 4 cups of baby kale or baby spinach, stems removed
- 5 cups vegetable or chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh oregano, for garnish
- 1/4 tablespoon of salt
- Olive oil, to serve
- Extra grated Parmesan cheese, to serve
Ingredients for the Parmesan Toasts
- Olive oil
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 baguette, thinly sliced
How to Cook the Soup
Heat the olive oil in a soup pot, until warm. Add the onion, carrots, garlic, celery, fresh oregano springs, pepper, and salt, when the oil is hot. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently until the vegetables are softened and the onions are translucent. Then, prepare the beans. Mash 1/2 cup of them with a fork on a plate. You can also use a potato masher. Add them to the vegetables in the pot. Cook, stirring for about 2 minutes.
Then, add the remaining beans to the pot and stir them. Add the chicken stock and bring it to a boil while stirring. Reduce the heat and cover partially with a lid-placed askew, and simmer for 20 minutes until the carrots are tender and the liquid is flavorful.
While the bean soup simmers, it’s time to prepare the Parmesan toast. Toast the bread until it’s lightly golden on both sides. While the toast is hot, sprinkle it with cheese and olive oil. If you have a toaster oven, heat the toast for 1 minute so you can melt the cheese. Otherwise, arrange the toasts in a skilled over medium heat. Then, cover and warm for about 1 minute or until the cheese has melted.
Add the greens – spinach or kale to the pot and simmer for another two minutes. Serve the bean soup by sprinkling it with more olive oil and oregano if you like. Serve the Parmesan toasts and add more Parmesan. You know what they say about cheese – you can never have too much!