Dutch grooms mostly older than brides

In some 70 percent of the 63 thousand marriages in the Netherlands in 2017, the man was older than the woman, Statistics Netherlands reports. In most cases the age difference is small, but in over 2 thousand marriages the groom was at least 15 years older than his bride. Brides being that much older than their grooms rarely happens in the Netherlands, according to the stats office.

In almost 20 percent of heterosexual marriages the woman was older, and in 10 percent both partners were the same age. In 41 percent of marriages the groom was between 1 and 5 years older than his bride, in 20 percent the man was five to ten years older. In 14 percent of marriages the woman was one to five years older than her husband. These percentages remained virtually unchanged over the past 20 years. 

In 2017 there were 61 marriages in which the bride was at least 20 years older than the groom, and 121 couples got married in which the woman was 15 to 20 years older. Such large age differences are much more common the other way around - 909 couples got married in 2017 in which the man was at least 20 years older, and 1,262 in which the man was 15 to 20 years older.

The age differences in same-sex marriages are somewhat greater than with heterosexual couples. Men especially seem to care less about their husband's age. In 7 percent of gay marriages in 2017 the age difference between partners was 15 to 20 years, and in 6 percent 20 years or more. More than a quarter of gay couples who got married in 2017 had an age difference of 10 years or more. Among lesbian marriages, one partner was 15 to 20 years older in 3 percent of marriages, and 20 years or more in 2 percent. 

While the number of same sex marriages is much smaller than the number of heterosexual marriages in the Netherlands, these percentages also remained virtually unchanged. In 2017 a total of 620 gay couples and 755 lesbian couples got married in the country. 

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