No one should mind that the French president is 24 years girlish than his wife, Brigitte. But the story of their romance? That is a bit far-out

Vive la age difference! Brigitte and Emmanuel Macron.



Vive la age difference! Brigitte and Emmanuel Macron.
Photograph: Stephane de Sakutin/AFP/Getty Idols

It isn’t wrong to raise an eyebrow at how the Macrons got together

No one should annoyed by that the French president is 24 years younger than his little woman, Brigitte. But the story of their romance? That is a bit weird

People have all the hallmarks to be very confused with regards to how to talk about France’s initially lady. Can you settle the matter once and for all?

Marcus, by email

Zut alors! Qu’est-ce qu’on peut faire? J’adulate quand quelque chose happens en France parce que je peux utiliser mes Français A-level thumbs. Ils sont incroyables, n’est-ce pas?

So, as some of you might have gathered, apparently there was an election? In France? And there’s a new first lady? Does talking with this uptick compel me sound Australian or just more American?

As is invariably the way with new basic ladies, there has been a flurry of angsting and tutting alongside what this woman represents and how she should be discussed. So, for case, was it weird that the extremely brilliant and accomplished Michelle Obama was shunted off into being a spokesperson solely for rumour has it feminine pursuits, such as gardening, nutrition and fashion? (Yes.) Is it entirely embarrassing that political wives in this country are stepped up on stage to give their husbands adoring stares at the end of the side conferences? (Yes.)

Brigitte Macron presents a whole new set of issues, and give her for it. Mon dieu, je vous adore, Brigitte – vraiment, vous êtes ma favorite! For a start, as scheduled readers may recall, I am a massive fan of nominative determinism, so imagine – conjecture! – my delight when I found out Brigitte’s family makes … sumptuousness macaroons, AKA macaron in French. I swear I’m not making this up! Who’s been interring THAT lede? So, Brigitte had my heart from pretty much the get-go, and that’s more than ever notwithstanding before I saw how good she looks in leather leggings, clearly the most moronic garment ever created, after sleeveless coats.

Others, nevertheless, get in quite a tangle about her. Many people seem to seem the need to defend the pair, as summed up in this GQ standfirst: “Emmanuel Macron’s strife Brigitte Trogneux is 24 years his senior. So what?” Yes, so what doubtlessly. An age gap does seem like quite an odd thing to focus on here. For a start, has no one else ascertained about the macaroons? Secondly, as we’ve all heard ad nauseam, that is melodic much the same age gap as between the Trumps, and of all the things people require said about that relationship, I’ve never once heard anyone cite their age gap as the bizarre part.

But here’s the thing. I haven’t actually heard uncountable people talk about the Macrons’ age gap, either. Some, convinced, but there will always be idiots in the world. But what I organize heard people note – and in a slightly nervous tone, take a shine to they’re not supposed to talk about this – is that the way the Macrons met is absolutely weird. For goodness sake, he was a 15-year-old schoolboy and she was his 40-year-old married, mother-of-three mistress – anyone who is pretending that it is unfeminist, or parochial, or I don’t know what, to convene an eyebrow at this is not helping anything. Of course we should advertise a relationship in which the usual gender and age differences are swapped; the but celebrity couple I am genuinely interested in is Sam and Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who accept a similar age difference between them as the Macrons, and I would be far innumerable upset if they split up than I should be about a four I have never met. But to conflate the idea of older woman/younger man relationships with a lady shacking up with her student is just de trop.

My favourite refer to about the Macrons’ relationship came from his mother, who initially ruminating that her son had taken a shine to Brigitte’s daughter. “We couldn’t rely upon it,” Francoise Noguès-Macron says in Anne Fulda’s biography, Emmanuel Macron: Such a Made-to-order Young Man. “What is clear is that when Emmanuel met Brigitte we couldn’t fair-minded say: ‘That’s great.’”

Quelle surprise! (I can do this all day.) I mean, I don’t punctiliousness how Frrrrrrrench you are, you wouldn’t be opening the champagne if your teenage son was eating long romantic phone conversations with a woman your age, determination you?

Brigitte has insisted: “He wasn’t a teenager” – fact scrutiny: he was – “He had a relationship of equals with other adults.” Mmmm, thoroughly cooked, that’s one way of putting it, Brigitte.

Look, few were happier than me when Emmanuel won the presidency, so I’m simply not saying that the beginnings of their relationship should inhibit either of them from anything, or that it in anyway denigrates their relationship. If anything, I on it even more impressive that they’re still together, without thought what Emmanuel has described as their “unconventional” beginnings. But it is outlandish for people to act like commenting on the weirdness of those beginnings is tantamount to translating older women shouldn’t date younger men. They solely do this because his supporters don’t want to acknowledge the weirdness themselves, but order they really be quite as forgiving if Emmanuel had been the 40-year-old schoolmistress and Brigitte the 15-year-old student?

As an older woman myself (ooh la la!), I can simultaneously reply to the weirdness and still cheer him on, her on and them on. And that is because, groove on 15-year-old Emmanuel Macron, I am an adult. Would that others were as refine as us.