At a mere 10 years younger, perhaps Ritchie was just too old for her.
It wasn't until the next day that my friend revealed he was only 25.
I'd gone on enough dates that didn't lead anywhere—often with much more age-appropriate matches than Mike—and I just didn't see the point in pretending we were something we weren't.
A few more conversations like that and Mike and I became a couple. It took almost six months before I got used to calling him my boyfriend, even as I was surprised by how little people cared. I occasionally get a side-eye from a bartender when we're both asked for ID.
But in general, people don't dwell on our age difference.
He told me about how his best friend had died in a drowning accident in college, and how much that tragedy still affected him, six years later.
It was as if by getting to know me on my terms and proving he wanted me in his life as a friend, I'd finally felt comfortable enough to open up in a way I didn't with men I met in typical dating situations.
Indeed, this is a woman who would have the courage to love a younger man,” says Winter.