7 Reasons Age Doesn’t Matter in Marriage

Rant 6

age at marriageOver the past few weeks, there has been an ongoing debate on Slate and all over the Internet about the age women should marry. Susan Patton wrote a letter to Princeton University girls saying they should lock down the good boys now. Two writers at Slate debated this same issue, with Julia Shaw saying all women SHOULD marry young and another writer saying the opposite. It's no wonder women are confused.

But the reality is, whether you marry at 19 or 38, there is only one recipe for happiness and contentment and it has nothing to do with age. It's not what age you marry. It's who you marry. Period. End of story.

Who you marry is the person that keeps you warm at night, comforts you through all your sadness, and holds your hand as you birth children and grow old together. Marriage is a beautiful thing that shouldn't be rushed into and shouldn't be forced because you reach "a certain age." Here are 7 reasons age doesn't matter in marriage:

  1. Not everyone wants kids: Half the reason most people give for expecting people to marry young is kids. But what about couples who want a soul mate but no babies? They do exist! How do they fit in? Why can't they marry when THEY -- not their biological clock -- want to marry?
  2. Not everyone matures at the same rate: Not to say that you must be mature to marry. But people get "marriage ready" at different times. There is no rush or prize for being the first to the altar. Do it when you are ready. Period.
  3. There is no time limit: It's not like parenthood for women, where we know our eggs expire at a certain age (and don't we know it given we are told every other second). Marriage isn't meant to be rushed into.
  4. It takes time to meet the right person: I know I lucked out in my husband search. I got engaged to a man at 24 (and married him at 25) who turned out to be a truly amazing partner and friend and father. This is something I know 10 years down the line. But at 24, I knew nothing. So much of it was luck. Also, it could have been different had I not met him. Don't look to get married. Look to marry the RIGHT person.
  5. Some people need to be wild: You know those people who get married at 23 and end up divorced by 28? That's because they didn't have the time to live their lives separate for a while. Enjoy your 20s single or enjoy them married. Just enjoy them the way YOU think is best.
  6. Social pressure isn't a good reason to marry: Sure, it sucks to be 29 and unmarried with no prospects. But it's a hell of a lot better than succumbing to social pressure and jumping in bed with the wrong guy. You are still young. Marriage and babies can still happen.
  7. No one else knows your relationship: People never thought my husband and I would last. Typically when you start dating at 22, that's how people treat you. But we did. Some who marry young will. Some won't. But age when you marry doesn't really have to be the deciding factor here.

When did you get married? Was age a factor?


marriage, 2011 year in review


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nonmember avatar NoWay

I married at 21 and again at 35. I think I was ready at 21, but my 20-year-old (now ex) husband was not. We stayed married for 4 years and had two kids. So, I don't really "regret" getting married to him. I met my soul mate when I was around 30. We started dating when I was 32 and got married at 35. He is older than me and his kids are in their 20s while mine are in the pre-teen years. So, while I could say I wish I had waited, I would not have my two "babies" so I believe things happened the way they were supposed to.

Missy... Missy2cats

I was married at 25. Then pregnant at 26. Turned out he was completely unprepared for the up's and down's of marriage, and he felt the first thing "wrong" was that I was having his baby. The marriage failed because he was not mature enough to continue the marriage with the new baby. He dicorced us. He still only rarely sees his daughter whom I raised alone. She is now 18 years-old.

nonmember avatar HappyMommy

I got married at 19, had my children at 21 and 25. My husband and I have been happily married for 7 1/2 years. Age doesn't matter. What matters is the work both people are willing to put into their marriage. Waiting until you're older to get married doesn't mean anything will be easier. It takes a lot of effort at any age to have a successful marriage.

1stYr... 1stYrDivorce

I got married at 29 and divorced at 32. I think in terms of age, it was a good time for both of us to get married -- we'd been together for four years, I'd sown my wild oats already, we both (thought) we wanted kids. Regardless of age or life experience, we ended up having to part ways. I'm very curious if or when I'll ever get married again. I'm so different now than I was when I got engaged at 28, but I do absolutely still believe in love.

tbruc... tbrucemom

I got married at 19 and divorced 28 years later (he had a midlife crisis). I'm getting married again at 52.  My feelings about marriage are very different at the different ages.  At 19 I didn't worry about anything except that I was in love. Thankfully it lasted a long time and I have 2 beautiful to show for it. Now I worry about all kinds of things. I think that's the biggest difference in when you get married is your maturity level.

nonmember avatar yumedntmatr

You need to protect yourself,your marriage and your children so be careful with who you choose.Women with lots of past partners are more likely to divorce than women with fewer.When a woman has had 16 or more past lovers, the odds are over 80% that her marriage will end in divorce.Even women with only 5 past lovers have divorce odds of 70%. The numbers are similar for men so save yourself to save those you care about and your love life and marriage.

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