How to Navigate May-December Marriages at Retirement Time

When one spouse is older than the other, retirement plans can get complicated.

A couple cuddling on the beach.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

When Mike Jay, 61, first met and fell in love with his wife Jenny 12 years ago, they were at similar stages in life: divorced, raising kids and building careers. She was 10 years younger, but it didn’t seem much of a difference. Now that retirement is around the corner, the age gap looms larger.

Ideally, Mike would like to retire around age 67. He wants to travel, go diving in the Caribbean and enjoy leisure while he’s physically fit enough to engage in an active lifestyle. But at 51, Jenny feels her career as a writer is just taking off.

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Contributing Writer, -

Katherine Reynolds Lewis is an award-winning journalist, speaker and author of The Good News About Bad Behavior: Why Kids Are Less Disciplined Than Ever – And What to Do About It. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, Fortune, Medium, Mother Jones, The New York Times, Parents, Slate, USA Today, The Washington Post and Working Mother, among others. She's been an EWA Education Reporting Fellow, Fund for Investigative Journalism fellow and Logan Nonfiction Fellow at the Carey Institute for Global Good. Residencies include the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and Ragdale. A Harvard physics graduate, Katherine previously worked as a national correspondent for Newhouse and Bloomberg News, covering everything from financial and media policy to the White House.