Post # 77
First of all, there’s a big difference between getting engaged and getting married. Engagement doesn’t come with any legal benefits, status changes, etc, its really just an emotional/social thing, and I think couples can do that whenever they please. Even if they don’t indend to actually marry for quite awhile.
Second, let’s be realistic here: the US economy sucks, especially for recent grads. A person can spend years looking for work, whether that’s work in their preferred field, or ANY work at all, depending on the location.
So my conclusion is that it really should be up to the couple to find their point of “ready”, and not define it by other life hurdles if they don’t want to/its not practical in their situation. I mean, I’m not saying you should leap into marriage while your mom still does your laundry, but if you’re mid 20s, in a stable, happy relationship, but you’re both just scraping by, I don’t see why the crappy economy should keep people from committing their lives to each other.
I actually read an article semi-on topic earlier today, about how recent grads have such horrible student loans and crappy job prospects that they’re delaying marriage and families. One girl was quoted as saying she’s given up on having kids at all, because in 5 years she’s stuggled to barely put a dent in her 6-figure loan.
Post # 78
You’re going to get a lot of different answers for this because everyone has a different situation but I’ll put in my two cents.
Ideally, I’d wanted to be done with school before I got married. FH has a good job, will be graduating next year and essentially has a job lined up for him as soon as he graduates. however, his mom’s health is declining and we want her to be there we’ve moved the date up. I’ll only have a year left of school and I intend to have a job within the next month or two. It’s not ideal, but it’s what we’re doing because of the circumstances we are dealing with.
Post # 79
I too initially really think a couple ought to be self-sufficient, independent and have plans to keep growing as a married couple before getting married. But the definition is different for everyone. People arrive at that point of being “ready” at different times.
In my situation, my SO is older and has a full-time job/career with a steadily growing income. I am a full-time student, paid my entire undergrad through scholarships, am finishing my degree this fall, and I’m applying for vet school ($$$$!!!). I have 4 minimum wage part time jobs, that pay barely enough for my end of basic household bills but 2 of which are great experience. Sadly I’m an international student so even to get a better paying job outside of campus or my field of study (just for extra cash) is impossible. If I get my green card that’d no longer be an issue. 😉
So we get by ok on our own. On the flip side, my parents have generously been saving up to pay for my vet school applications and tuition. Now, if I wanted to be on my own, I could either refuse that money and have gigantic debt, not go, or wait 5 years to get married (and lose much of my insurance after undergrad and have limited summer work). And getting married during vet school is a bit much. Nor can one easily work while in vet school.
Does having parental help for my expensive education make me less independent and less ready? I don’t feel that way. It’s a gift, and it’s a very practical one. We can certainly afford the wedding on our own- I don’t expect any help- and it makes a lot of sense financially and logistically, and we’ll actually be far better off after it. So pooh pooh to those who object!
Point being… there is no magic formula.
Post # 80
- Wedding: October 2013 - Vine Street Church
We both wanted to have solid jobs before getting engaged or married because we didn’t want to be engaged for a long time.
Post # 81
Crikey, I hope not… I’m still doing my PhD!
I do think you should wait until you are financially secure though. To me, this means owning your own home. This is the reason Fiance and I took so long to get married!
Post # 82
Wow, I’m amazed someone found this thread! I’m now in a pretty similar situation to you; I’m still not engaged (but now with hints that it’s coming by next April). My SO, who is older, is well-established in his career and has two or three side jobs/freelance options, and owns the land and house we live on/in. I’m a graduate student with a part-time job, a paid internship (lucky me) and when school is in session, a part-time workstudy position. And my parents are paying half of my $$$$ grad school expenses (1/2 the tuition and rent for the apartment I have to have to go there).
At this point, I think I would like to have a relatively steady job by the time we get married, but I really don’t think it matters at all for getting engaged!
Yeah, I know. . . I’ll just be graduating with my Master’s (hopefully) in May or June 2015! I’ve ended up with needing to be working on my Master’s for a little over 2 1/2 years, rather than the 2 I expected. Which means that, if my SO’s and my tentative timeline works out, I’ll be finishing writing my thesis and planning our wedding at the same time, and we’ll be getting married around when I finally get the Master’s degree! The thing for us is, my SO owns our home outright, so that is not a worry. I guess my only worry for us getting married is that I need to be able to pay for some of the wedding, which is hard to save for when you’re a student– oh well, we don’t need an extravaganza.
Post # 83
But you already have a home! That was such a big deal for us. I worked multiple jobs and saved for 10 years to pay for my half of our deposit. It was only after we moved in that we started saving for the wedding… we’ve been together for about 7 1/2 years!
I know I’m showing my middle classness, but having that property was sooooo important to us! Much more important than a wedding.
Post # 84
I think you need to be financially independent as a couple before getting engaged.
Post # 85
I guess getting married (and thus, the wedding) is really important to me, partially because I haven’t had to worry about saving for a home. I just spent 6 years of semi-pathetic (mostly student and part-time income) savings on a nice, but still used car.. . it’s hard to get those things that are such symbols of maturity and independence! I can’t say how glad I am that we don’t have to worry about buying a house, and I know that I am very lucky. The thing is, we are comfortable only if we are very careful, our house is small and efficient, and we don’t need or want the stuff that most people do– like nice cell phones, new furniture, etc. I worry about wedding costs because I do want a nice wedding, in the next 2 years or so, and I want to be able to pay for some of it myself. I guess a wedding is a really important thing to me, for some reason; I really want to be married and would like to have a fairly nice party when we get married. 🙂 Gosh, I’m rambling!
Post # 86
Hey everyone, OP here. I just want to make sure that, if you reply to this, you know it’s a thread that is a year old that just got revived, and I no longer need answers to the questions I posed when I started it. It is turning into an interesting discussion about matters surrounding the issue, though, so all are welcome to participate! 🙂
Post # 87
Nope, I get it. And I get how awesome it is to get a car as a student. As in YIP YIP, I’M A REAL GROWN UP! I love my ten year old car. She and I have a history together.
Post # 88
I think its fine for you to get engaged when you are both ready (so, in the near future) but then wait to get married until you have left grad school and have a job.
Post # 89
Everyone’s relationship is different. I was engaged at one point pre-graduation but looking back, I was so not ready (nor was that the right relationship, but that’s another thing.) As soon as that was over I knew I wasn’t going to be ready to be engaged until me and whoever I was with were both financially stable and on our own.
But that’s just me… not everyone has the same criteria as I do. If you and your guy are both gung ho and don’t have any major obstacles you don’t feel you can hurdle, I don’t see why not.