Sally Wood, 36, on her age gap with Ronnie Wood, 67: ‘I wish it wasn’t there’

Ronnie Wood

Ronnie Wood married Sally Humphreys in December 2012. This was (only) his third marriage, which is a pretty small number for a rock star. I jest. Ronnie and Sally seem very happy together now, but their wedding caused a huge family rift on Ronnie’s side. There were arguments about money and how Ronnie had left his second wife, Jo, for a Russian waitress who was 18. Then Ronnie fell for Sally, and her parents gave the couple their blessing even though Ronnie was 65 and Sally was 34 when they wed.

Sally isn’t exactly a trophy wife. She still runs her own theater production company in the West End and does charitable work for underprivileged children in the arts. Sally has a new interview with the Telegraph, and Ronnie pops into the conversation to rave about his fast-growing Wisteria plant. Sally says she was surprised by their romance (they met when he displayed work at her art gallery). Being married to Ronnie has made Sally a step-grandmother to 8 children, and she says they call her “Auntie.” Their life together sounds really tame by rock-god standards:

Does she think about the age gap? “Um, well, I know it’s there. And I wish it wasn’t, but it is. I think I had to say ‘I can’t do this because of the age,’ or I just had to let it go and take it all on board. At no point, years ago, did I say to myself: ‘I think I’ll go out with someone twice my age,’ but that is what has happened.”

She’s a sober influence on Ronnie: “Come and see the non-drinking fridge!” she exclaims, taking me over to one of the many refrigerators in the house. It is filled with cans of Coke and energy drinks.

They do jigsaw puzzles together: “We like them because they are very good for the brain.” Backgammon is another passion of theirs. The Stones have just finished touring, and Sally organised a backgammon tournament for everyone. It will resume when the tour strikes up again in October.

Ronnie chimes in on pasttimes: “Box sets. Being on tour jetlags you. So we watch 19 murder mysteries in a row. And Orange Is the New Black. And Fargo. We watch loads of box sets on the road, too. Even with Jagger I go, ‘Let’s go and watch House of Cards.’ And he told us about Game of Thrones. Breaking Bad is the best. When Aaron Paul [who played Jesse Pinkman in the show] came backstage at a gig, that caused more pandemonium than even the band.”

Sally says time is precious: “Things can change in an instant. I had a very good friend who I was working with when I was getting together with Ronnie, who said, ‘You don’t have all the time in the world.’ And he wasn’t referring to Ronnie’s age, but to me. And I thought that was quite a good point. I had to just make the decision to say, ‘Actually, I’m with Ronnie, this is who we are and this is what we are doing together.”

On being a Stones WAG: “It’s Ronnie who is famous. I’m just with him. I mean, you can’t help but sometimes read the stuff online, where they say you’re wearing a nightmare pair of shoes or that you’re older/younger/thinner/fatter than whoever. But you can’t obsess over it, because it would drive you mad. And actually, if that is the worst thing that is happening in my world then really, I am tremendously lucky.”

Will she and Ronnie have kids? “Umm, yeah. There’s no plans but there’s no non-plans, if you see what I mean. As time ticks on, I would like children. I don’t know if I will but I would like them, and if not then I feel lucky to have little people around me anyway. A baby would be nice. Obviously we’ve spoken about it quite a lot, and you can ask him and his response would be, ‘Well, that would be nice.’ He’s up for it. He’s got a lot of friends that are older who have younger children and they all say it’s fantastic and it keeps you young.”

[From Telegraph]

I cannot even imagine trying to parent a baby in my 60s. I cannot even imagine doing so in my 40s. My teenage daughter exhausts me, and a baby is even more demanding. So it seems strange to me that some men choose to become fathers in their 60s. Ronnie wouldn’t be on diaper duty by himself though. Sally is still in her 30s, and they’d hire some help too. It sounds like Ronnie’s age does weigh heavily on Sally’s mind, but it’s not like she didn’t know his age going into the relationship. They seem pretty solid. I can’t believe the Stones play backgammon and mainline Netflix on tour. That’s kind of amazing.

Ronnie Wood

Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet

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58 Responses to “Sally Wood, 36, on her age gap with Ronnie Wood, 67: ‘I wish it wasn’t there’”

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  1. Well, I’m all about loving whomever you choose, but YEEEEEEEZUS am I tired of this old cliche. Is it just me?

  2. Sixer says:

    CLAIM TO FAME! CLAIM TO FAME! My aunt was in Ronnie Wood’s class at little school!

  3. poppy says:

    if the age gap wasn’t there, neither would she.

  4. Kelly says:

    My husband is 27 years older than me and it is something that you sometimes think about and sometimes forget. What is pertinent here is that she is not a kid or a bimbo. He actually married a grown woman and not a girl, and she was old enough to decide for herself.

    • JWQ says:

      I agree! While I would never date anyone old enough to be my parent, I think that at 34 a person is old enough to make his or her decisions in a rational way by him/herself! Sure, there are people who are unable to do that even as adults, but in general, a normal person can! She wasn’ t 18, still living with her parents and just out of high school!

    • Truthtful says:

      well being older 31 years than her… To him she IS a girl! Age is not something you can dance around you are always older or younger relatively to someone and 31 years means he could have fathered her so… to him she IS a girl!

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Truthful, I’m glad to see you again. We discussed this before, and I didn’t see your last comment until it was too late to respond, but I thought about what you said. I still think there’s a difference if the woman is over 30 (as opposed to 21) but I think you have a point that the power imbalance is still there, and unless the couple is very unusual, there is probably an inherent incompatibility there.

      • Truthtful says:

        Hello Goodnamesalltaken !! I am so so pleased that you can see my point, it’s exactly about imbalance. Thanks and I love your surname ;)

  5. Panache says:

    She seems really nice and self-aware. I hope she gets the baby she wants.

  6. AlmondJoy says:

    Sigh. I’m going to be really positive and say that I find her gorgeous I love her coat in the first pic.

  7. maybeiamcrazy says:

    She is 36 years old adult. The age gap is huge but she is in her thirties therefore (hopefully) fully mature woman who can hold her own. To me, someone in his/her thirties dating someone twice their age is not the same with 20-25 year olds doing it.

  8. GeeMoney says:

    Their 30 year age gap is insanely odd, but if they are happy, they are happy.

    Like I said about Jeff Goldblum and his fiancee… at least she’s in her 30′s.

  9. Kali says:

    The mental image of the Stones freaking out about getting to meet Jesse Pinkman SLAYS me. I hope one of them asked him to say “b*tch”.

  10. db says:

    I can understand a old guy having kids with a young wife — after all he’s not going to be doing the heavy lifting parentingwise. Which works out well because he no longer has the upper body strength anyway.

  11. Adrien says:

    The age gap would only be odd lookng if the girl is in her early 20s. Their relationship only looks weird because she looks very, very young for her age (36).

  12. Azurea says:

    You know, I think that the baby boomers in general are really younger at heart as oldters than the generations preceeding them.

  13. Sumodo1 says:

    Sally is beautiful in the pink coat and dress ensemble.

  14. Jayna says:

    I read the interview, and I like her. It’s her life, not mine, and she seems to be well-rounded and have her head on her shoulders. But if I were going to be with a 67-year-old rocker, Ronnie would not be my pick. LOL Springsteen getting ready to turn 65 in a month or two is my idea of a virile man I could overlook being in his mid 60s and envision having sex with. I saw a photo of Bruce on the beach and he has a great body for any man over the age of 40, much less 60s.

    Wasn’t Ronnie a raging alcoholic not so long ago?

  15. coconut says:

    cheers to them: they look really happy and connected with each other.

  16. minime says:

    “And actually, if that is the worst thing that is happening in my world then really, I am tremendously lucky.”

    Wow!! She sounds so nice. I have no shade for her (or him). They seem to be a very happy (normal) couple. She is old enough to make her own decisions and she seems to be very aware of the implications. After Kanye West ranting again on his stupid celebrity status comparisons with real world problems is nice to see someone acknowledging the privilege.

    I personally feel the age gap as being too big, but I know a couple with the same gap (reversed genders) and they are about the most equilibrated couple I have ever seen. Happiness is what it is.

  17. KLO says:

    I really like this woman, shes is gorgeous , smart and knows what the deal is. To me the big age gap is not weird because I once was totally in love with a man 20 years older than me. It totally caught me by surprise as well as him because I don´t usually go for older men and he doesn´t chase around young girls.
    I would have loved to marry him, but he did not want more children and I do, so that was the dealbreaker for me.

    Sometimes you just can´t help who you fall in love with and oftentimes it is just better to go with it and be happy with the time you have with that person.

  18. supposedtobeworking says:

    My mother in law married a man 25 years older than her in her late 20′s, he is my husbands step father.

    I think at stages it seems to be an easier relationship than other stages. She is working, he is retired. He is now 78. He never takes on an interest of hers, she always has to take on his interest if she wants to spend time with him (fishing, golfing, etc) She loves to because she loves spending time with him, but she would also love it if he would be interested in her. Her mind is at such a different place than his though, that I think he finds her very uninteresting. He is also a very educated and curious man, and she is happy to go to work, come home, eat supper, have sex, go to bed. She is in her late 50′s and seems so much older than her age group peers. The age ago shows itself.

    I think there are unanticipated challenges when you get to the older stages, especially for the less wealthy, when one person needs to work to finance the lifestyle of one baby boomer and one self indulgent old guy who is retired, has time on his hands and wants to ‘live’ before he dies. I don’t see it as being easy.

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      Ha! Love your name.

      I have a friend who was happily married for years to a great guy who is almost 30 years older that she is. Things are really hard now that she’s in her 50s and he’s quite elderly. He doesn’t want to do much, he resents her working, he’s hard of hearing and it’s difficult for them to socialize… She loves him and I don’t think she would abandon him at this stage, but it seems very hard and she always seems unhappy and depressed.

  19. Emily C. says:

    ” And actually, if that is the worst thing that is happening in my world then really, I am tremendously lucky.”

    Yes. I don’t understand why so many hugely overprivileged people cannot see this. Whether it’s Kanye or Goop or Justin Theroux complaining he can’t tell obnoxious, unfunny, bigoted “jokes”: stfu and listen to this woman.

  20. Observer says:

    I hate the “at least she’s in her thirties” line…spare me will you! How incredibly offensive is that (if you think about it)? He is still bloody decades older than her! And “in your thirties” is still YOUNG, and the age gap doesn’t magically disappear or make it less creepy because one is in their thirties.
    It’s like women can never be too young, unless you are barely legal of course.
    I find it offensive and the normalization of these age gaps will soon make late twenties perfectly ok and old enough to be with someone in their 60s, I’m gonna say it: I think it’s sick and sexist.
    I am only in my twenties but I would hate if someone was like “well, you’re not too young for someone in their 60s” – What!? I am too young for someone in their damn late thirties much less 40′s, 50′s and 60s, stop trying to make me and other women older than we are!
    Also, kids!? Ok so we are just going to ignore the studies that show that men after 40 have a higher risk of getting babies with DS no matter HOW young the woman in question is. Sperm quality, google it.
    Oh and just because someone is intelligent and has a respectable job does NOT mean they can’t be golddiggers or after fame and security! So called “goldiggers” come in all shapes, sizes, ages and backgrounds.
    If you want to be with someone that much older – good for you! But don’t say “welp she’s not barely legal so that makes it ok!”, don’t add years on the rest of us who are still growing and learning like men of the same ages. It’s insulting.

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      I agree with a lot of what you say – a lot. But I’d just point out that when you’re in your twenties, age gaps seem a lot bigger and a bigger deal than they do when you’re older, just as a two year difference is huge in childhood but not a big deal in your twenties. Also, those of us who have gone through it realize that you change so much in your twenties, and though you keep evolving, you change less in who you are as a person as the decades go by. So it might seem more incomprehensible to you than it does to someone my age. No, that’s not true. It’s still pretty incomprehensible to me at 57. But maybe less disgusting? I don’t mean this to sound condescending in any way. You are very mature, I’m sure and wise, but the age thing mellows out a little later on. I will, however agree with you that it’s often sexist and you are smart to think about all the variables when choosing a partner.

    • maybeiamcrazy says:

      I don’t get how it is sexist. Did someone mention only women can be younger and I missed it? The only reason someone in her/his thirties being with a much older partner is more reasonable is maturity. I am 22 years old and I would never date someone in their 40s. I wouldn’t know what to talk about. I just graduated from college. I don’t have much experience in “real world”. This woman has a career and life experience. She is an adult. They might actually have things to talk about and fully understand each other.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        I just meant that many men don’t see themselves as possibly being with a woman their own age, but have to go for someone almost young enough to be their grandchild. Because women are valued by some people only for their looks. To me, that’s sexist. I know older women date younger men, but there doesn’t seem to be the same superficiality attached. Idk, maybe I didn’t have a great point there, I’m sort of talking myself out of it.

      • Observer says:

        Exactly! it’s the fact that they go for SO much younger women instead of women their own age, who btw tend to age much better than the males of the same age group.
        Of course they don’t go ‘rockstar young’ but a good decade younger if they can!
        Also the double standards that kind of ties in with the whole men age like fine wine thing..

    • Truthtful says:

      I so agree with everything your said (usually I am the one ranting about it ;) ) . absolutely everything and I find it terribly offensive , but the thing that piss me off is that women perpetrate the “at least she is in her 30′s or ” she is not 21″!

      And same about fertility it amazes me that today, in our era women know so little about the fertility decrease of men after 40 . just crazy.

      I have to thank you because your enlightened this thread :) (to me!)

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Lol, truthful, at first I thought it WAS you. But as I said above, I thought you made some really good points, and Observer did as well.

      • Observer says:

        Ha! Yeah I’m not gonna lie it annoys the hell out of me because all of it is intertwined with the sexualization of young girls, the myth that girls age faster than boys (mentally) even though it only has to do with growing physically at a much faster rate (height, weight etc) but after puberty it’s even steven…and just because an 11 year old has bigger breasts does not mean she is a fully matured woman which many don’t seem to understand sadly.
        I am all over the place but it’s all connected somehow.
        /rant over :’)

  21. Ciria says:

    I suppose love comes in all forms but I’m a smidge younger than her and cannot imagine being with a man that much older. There would be no sexual attraction for me. The oldest man I dated was fourteen years old and he thought I was too young which sucked cause I really liked him. But older than that, I have never and definitely not 30 years.

  22. Velvet Elvis says:

    Normally I detest celebrities in a ridiculous May-Dec relationship, but for some reason I like these two together. Shrugs.

  23. RobN says:

    I know what she means about wishing it wasn’t there. My husband is 17 years older than me and it’s hard to realize that he’s not always going to be there. I’d like to have more time together, but you take what you can get.

    My sister in law died of breast cancer at 29. Nobody promises you anything, so grab the good stuff.

  24. Zombie Shortcake says:

    Wow, what a contrast to the alleged feelings the band members held for L’Wren Scott.

  25. maryquitecontrary says:

    I am married quite happily to a man 21 years older than me. We have been together since I was 19 and he was 40. It really is the person you fall in love with. At different ages the age difference has really presented challenges in our relationship. It is hard to watch the one you love age. He cannot do all of the things we used to do, and he has slowed down due to health issues. But the strength of us, and our life spent together, outweighs those things. It sounds like they have found that balance, which I think, comes from a genuine liking and respect for each other. It’s rare to find that. We consider ourselves pretty lucky. I hope that is their experience also.