Queer TikToker and filmmaker Chris Stanley has opened up about being in a relationship with a 27-year age gap.
Stanley, who began his TikTok career in 2018 and now has more than 860,000 followers, has been dating his partner Bret LaBelle for two years.
The pair, then 22 and 47, became a couple after Stanley watched a season of Survivor, which LaBelle came out on.
He told Gayety: “It was crazy because I didn’t think he was gay, yet I was rooting for him from the second I first saw him.”
But after finding out LaBelle was gay, Stanley messaged the Survivor contestant on instagram, and the rest is history.
Speaking to PinkNews about his relationship with LaBelle, Stanley said: “He’s not my dad. He’s my daddy.”
The 23-year-old said the biggest challenge of having an age gap relationship is “other people’s judgement”.
“I just want to make cute videos with my boyfriend on Instagram and the they ed up going viral, but a lot of the comments are just kind of rude, kind of mean, and I guess, ignorant.”
Stanley said people will often try to make him feel that something’s wrong with the couple for having a 27-year age gap, and when people refer to his partner as his dad, he finds it funny.
“People always think the older person is just the sugar daddy or they think the younger person is only in it for the money, which is completely not true because I make my own money and my boyfriend makes his own money,” he explained.
But Stanley understands some people’s concern as he remembers thinking, prior to being in one, that age gap relationships were “maybe a little bit weird”.
“As long as they were an adult and making decisions for themselves I figured it was fine.”
In offering advice to young queer people, Stanley said “it gets better” when you become an adult and can make your own choices.
“Don’t give up and just remember that you are loved and being gay is completely normal,” he concluded.
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