Post # 32
OP, I’m 19, got engaged at 18, and have known my Fiance for seven years, and have dated for three. However, I had to learn to be independent from my parents at a very young age. Like GamersBride said, you were probably 14 or 15 when you started dating. You (and I) are still very young.
And I feel like when you said your bit about the 30 year olds getting married within a year only to have kids, you were also making a snap judgement, much like what you don’t want us to do. I could easily say you’re too young to get married and you will ultimately divorce, but that would be me doing exactly what you just did to “older” folks who want to get married “solely for children”.
Post # 33
I totally agree with you!! I got engaged when I was 21 but I will be 23 by the time I get married! I felt like I didn’t get the happy reactions I was hoping to get, I got more of “are you sure you are ready”, “you are so young you have all of the time in the world to get married.” I hated these reactions, they were so frustrating! Like is it really that hard to act happy for me!? So i know how you feel!
Post # 34
Yes, you’re young, that’s a fact. It doesn’t make it any less rude for people to question your personal decisions like you somehow deserve less respect for not being older. You don’t need to to defend your maturity to people who are being inappropriate.
It’s not like marriage is a 30+ only club. Whether you get married at 20 or 30, you will continue to grow and change throughout your life. People can grow apart, but they can also grow together.
Post # 35
I recall a story my brother told me from an experience he had with one of his co-workers. My brother met his high school sweetheart at 15, started dating her at 17, got engaged at 20 and they were married when they were 21 and 22. As he approached his 30th birthday, he had a co-worker about the same age who asked my brother if he was married. When my brother said ‘yes,’ the guy recoiled in horror and asked for how long. He then proceeded to say, “What’s wrong with you? You could be out living the single life, spending your money any way you want and banging a bunch of babes. You wasted your 20s.”
My brother answered, “I’m happy with my life the way that it is.”
Everyone has different priorities. Some people get married later in life for circumstances out of their control, or because they choose to spend their younger years alone. It can get easy, then, to cast a judgmental eye at others – or to believe that because a decision wasn’t right for you at 20, it’s not right for anyone that age either.
You’ve obviously accomplished a lot and you seem rather stable in your life. My biggest concern when it comes to young marriage is that oftentimes, age does correlate with a lot of other concerns (education completed, if the person has a stable and decent job, etc.), but it’s not always that way. Maturity comes into mind as well – and certainly, GIGs as well if you’ve only been with your current partner – but surely that’s something that’s already come to mind.
If someone has something to say to you, don’t even bother to defend yourself. You don’t owe anyone an explanation. A polite – even a playful, “Well, it’s great that we all get our lives to live as we see fit!” should do the trick. And if it doesn’t, a firm, “I know what I’m doing. Hey, how’s (some other topic) going for you?” should make it clear that your age is permanently tabled from wedding conversations.
Post # 36
+1 you put this very well.
OP, even from a biology perspective, you’re not an adult yet – the brain matures at about 25/26. It sounds like you have it together, but the brain thing really does make a difference, and it’s a hard thing to understand until you’re older. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get married, but the people telling you this stuff usually mean well. They remember what it was like to be 20 and how much age and experience change who you are and how you view the world.
Post # 37
Just because you’re young doesn’t mean you’re wrong BUT it does mean you MUST take extra care of yourself first. I see you’re almost finished school? Make sure you finish. Make sure you have friends and a life outside of your future husband. Have hobbies and things that are just yours and not his.
If I had married my bf at 20, he’d be the same guy I’m going to marry at 27. I set some serious ground rules for myself on how I was going to take care of myself as an individual, because I was (still am) so head over heels for this guy. I didn’t want it to obscure the future that I wanted for myself.
This can be done. I can’t blame you for being annoyed at the comments either. I think @GamersBride had some really good reasoning behind WHY people say those things.
Ehhh, I sort of want to suggest waiting to give yourselves the best possible chance, but everyone is different and that may not matter for you guys.
One more thought: You might have still received those comments if you waited anyway. I got some of those, and I’m 26 with an 8 year (almost 9 year) relationship.
TLDR; Take care of yourself, consider peoples’s advice, carry on with your life the way you see fit.
Post # 38
Actually, the divorce rate among those who enter their first marriages before the age of 25 is 60%. The percentage of divorces among those who enter their first marriage after their 25th birthday is 36%. The actual overall divorce rate among all demographics is around 41% (the 50% divorce rate is a myth.
That said, I don’t think getting married is a coin toss where you’re playing the odds. I think strong marriages are built on skills and mutual dedication to the institution of marriage. My own parents married when they were only 19 and 20. 33 years later, and they’re still going strong.
I think the big thing about marrying young is when you’re young, there are already a lot of life transitions that you’re going already going through. It’s a very stressful time in one’s life and a time of self discovery. We change a lot. Add marriage into the equations and you’ve got one extra stress. Getting married later in life simply slows that transition down. You and the person you’ve married have sort of stableized at that point. Couples are also a bit more established in their careers. So, the transition is a bit easier.
In the meantime, young people tend to be niave about their expectations of marriage. I think the fact that the chance of divorce goes up with each subsequent marriage illustrates that there are some people who search for an ideal that doesn’t exist. I remember talking to a coworker of mine. She was divorced and remarried. While she loved her current husband, she admitted that her current marriage wasn’t any better than her first marriage. She got divorced because she was disappointed by the reality of what marriage is. Still believing the fantasy existed, she searched again and came up with the exact same thing. By that point she realized divorce wasn’t even worth the hassle. She learned to truly give into the good and the bad.
Post # 39
@misslillypad: I think most people look back on themselves at that age and that’s why they say those things. I am one of those people who (at least on this forum) have voiced the opinion that getting married young may not always be the smartest thing. You don’t exactly sound like a typical 20 year old, though. You sound more put together than many people who have a decade on you!
However.. if it’s people who know you well that are voicing this opinion, I would take it with more than a grain of salt. They know you, and they want what’s best for you. It’s possible they see something that you don’t. If it’s people who don’t know you, just brush it off… their opinions really don’t matter right?
With that said, it’s your life, and you can prove them wrong. If you know you have a good thing and you have discussed money, sex, politics, religion, kids, where you’re going to live, jobs, etc., and are on the same page, then marry.