Post # 1
I thought this article was really interesting and reflects some of the things I see here – such as marriage being considered a “capstone,” i.e. education complete, house bought, secure middle-class life achieved before marriage. Also, it does seem true that a lot more people are having kids and THEN getting married to the other parent, or maybe not. I’ve always considered becoming a parent a MUCH bigger commitment than getting married, so it’s interesting that the trend is what it is. Thoughts?
Post # 4
I would get married first.
Post # 5
I personally wouldn’t have kids before marriage, but I also don’t consider marriage a capstone. I think 2 people can grow, change, and acheive together.
Post # 6
I wouldn’t care one bit about having children without getting married. I didn’t cause I’m young and got married very recently, but having children without being married is not something that I see as undesirable.
Post # 7
I have a 7 year old son, and I’m about to marry his father in a couple months. It didn’t make a difference to me if we were married or not, in fact we didn’t even want to get married early in our relationship. That only changed in the last couple of years.
I wouldn’t have put off having kids, I wanted them when I wanted them. We wanted more, but it doesn’t seem to be working out that way. I’m glad we didn’t wait, because I may not have been able to have any at all if we waited until we were both older.
Being married isnt going to change or strengthen our relationship. We are solid no matter what. We are a team, and this is just something we are choosing to do because it’s fun and it’s a nice symbolic gesture to eachother/for our son/for our family.
Post # 8
I don’t think that getting married is the capstone at all. People go back to school after they’re married. People buy houses and new cars and stuff, too. I can see if you’re never getting married, but really, if you aren’t going to get married, your timing for having children is moot.
Post # 9
What do you (the general you) think about the idea that younger people seem to shy away from the commitment of marriage more than the commitment of kids? That seems backward to me.
Post # 10
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
I lay it on two factors: 1) getting pregnant is easy for the most part; and 2) finding a “soul mate” is difficult. Women get tired of waiting around or they aren’t as careful with their birth control as they should be and so they end up pregnant with a partner they wouldn’t necessarily marry. If they aren’t good enough to marry, why are they good enough to have a child with?
Since I work in family welfare and safety I see firsthand how having children before marriage cuts many women off at the knees. Yes, there are some that excel as single parents but for many more it’s a daily struggle to find the support system they need to raise a successful child on their own. The biggest predictor of poverty is having a child out of wedlock and the biggest predictor of having a child out of wedlock is having a high school diploma or lower. Poverty and having children outside of marriage absolutely go hand in hand.
I personally would not want to get pregnant intentionally outside of marriage and personally I used birth control to ensure it doesn’t happen. But if it did happen to me, I would do everything in my power to ensure that my child and I had a huge support network of friends and family (these support networks make the difference imo based on my experience with the child welfare system.)
Post # 11
From the people I know who have had kids before marriage, it’s because they had an ‘oops’ baby. A wedding requires (for most people) planning but if an oops baby happens, not really much you can do before it!
I don’t know anyone who has actively tried to get pregnant before being married. Probably because if they’re ‘trying’ then they know they’re going to be with their partner forever, and most likely will have made the decision to get married first.
The only exception to that which I have found is older women, who put baby before marriage, because it’s harder to conceive at an older age and thus it becomes the priority.
Post # 12
@beachbride1216: Couldn’t have said it better. As a 21 year old senior in college, I made up my mind at about 7 years old about having kids before marriage. I would not. All kids are gifts, however the statistics have shown time and time again that children born to young moms generally grow up in disadvantaged households with single moms. Of course there are exceptions to every rule, but these exceptions don’t outweigh the detriments that some kids face because their parents decided to have them at a younger age.
However, I do not take enagage in bashing young mothers and I believe that once a young mom conceives, she should be given The resources and support she needs to care for her child and be successful (however she defines it).
Post # 13
I would definitely want to be/choose to be a mom even if I didn’t get married. I would probably pursue adoption rather than artificial insemination in that case.
FI and I are planning to TTC after marriage, but if we got pregnant now, we would keep the baby.
It’s nicest when there are two doting parents, and it’s convenient when your timeline fits into society’s ideals, but these are not the most important considerations when deciding to be a parent or not, IMO.
Post # 14
Amen! I wouldn’t see marriage as the capstone since I’m actually planning on continuing my Masters Degree AFTER getting married but I am definitely waiting until after I finish my graduate degree to have children.
Post # 15
I don’t look at marriage as the capstone of everything. I see getting married as choosing a partner to go through life with, and that includes certain milestones, like graduating or buying a home. I got married after I graduated college, but I am probably going to be going back to grad school. My husband started his new career after we got married. I wouldn’t make the commitment to have children without having made the marriage commitment to someone first.
Post # 16
If they aren’t good enough to marry, why are they good enough to have a child with?
Exactly! I agree with everything you said. Interesting to hear from someone who has firsthand knowledge.