With a 34-Year Age Difference, Can David Foster and Katharine McPhee Ever Really Work?

With a 34-Year Age Difference, Can David Foster and Katharine McPhee Ever Really Work?

He's 68. She's 34.

By Marianne Garvey

Linda Thompson is happy for her ex-husband, David Foster and his new fiancée Katharine McPhee. She’s just a little concerned about their age difference.

“I wish them well,” Linda, 68, tells Us Weekly. “I think the only thing that’s a real deterrent, I think, is the age difference.

David is 68, while the singer is 34. He popped the question earlier this month while the two were vacationing on the Italian island of Capri. 

Linda and David married in 1991 and divorced in 2005. They don’t share any children together.

“But I think life doesn’t have any guarantees anyway,” Linda added of the relationship. “If you find someone you love, go for it, you know? [She is] is a lovely person. She’s beautiful and she’s talented, and they have that musically in common, so that goes a long way.”

Many see an age difference that big as problematic to a relationship. But just ask Erika Girardi, it can work out. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star is 32 years younger than husband Tom Girardi and she doesn't care what anyone thinks about that.

"I don't know if people still doubt my marriage or not, but it's interesting," Erika said on RHOBH. "I'm not really worried about other people's marriages, I don't know why they should be worried about mine. They're not paying my bills, so why would I give a f--- what they think?"

Can age make or break a relationship? Well, yes, if one person wants kids and the other is over it or has already raised children. But not always.

“A 2014 Emory University study of 3,000 recently married and divorced people showed that age gap was correlated with breaking up; couples with ages falling within five years of each other were significantly less likely to divorce than couples who had age gaps of, say, 10 or 20 years,” reports Psychology Today. “However, that’s just one study; others, like a 2008 analysis of data from England and Wales, show there is not a significant association between age gap and marriage dissolution.”

Research from 2017 out of the University of Colorado shows that both men and women who marry younger than themselves are “often initially happier, but see a sharper decline in satisfaction over time.”

“We find that men tend to be more satisfied with younger wives and less satisfied with older wives. Interestingly, women likewise tend to be more satisfied with younger husbands and less satisfied with older husbands,” reports the study.

You don’t say. People prefer younger partners?

Yes, but they may not be as happy and fulfilled as those who marry someone who is a similar age, research says.

Overall, making it work is really about having “enough in common to bond, enough difference to learn from each other, and similar views on partnerships,” says Psychology Today. “And there’s nothing more attractive than seeing the world through the eyes of someone who’s experienced things you haven’t. Dating someone older or younger exposes you to their stories, their peers, their cultural references and their insights, all of which can lead to great discussion and even more intimacy.”

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