“How old are you?”
“I’m almost 23.”
“And you’re married?”
This is just one example of the many conversations I’ve had with people who can’t begin to understand why I would do something as [foolish, impulsive, silly, or stupid] as getting married at 22.
Now, I should preface this by saying that I have no problem with genuinely curious people wondering how I came to make such a life-altering decision at a “young” age. I am a curious person myself and I can’t knock others for sharing this same trait. The thing that I cannot fathom, however, is the prevalent stereotype that a young adult doesn’t have the capability or maturity to make a lifelong commitment to the person he or she loves. Though young love does exist, it is vastly misunderstood.
I desire to do my part in eradicating the stereotype that millennial marriage is mindless by addressing some common misconceptions.
- Getting married young is an immature thing to do
Taking a vow to love and protect someone for the rest of your life is immature? Hmm, I think it’s quite the opposite, actually. It takes responsibility to make the decision to stand by someone in both good times and in bad. It takes patience to appreciate someone at their best and at their worst. It takes honesty and vulnerability to share the best and worst parts of yourself with another being. And it takes strength to do these things willingly. Making the well-thought out decision to share your life with the person you’re in love with is not immature; it’s incredible.
- Age dictates the success of your marriage
There are many things that go into the construction of a successful marriage, including, but not limited to, age, chemistry, compatibility, finances, family values, and goals. In my opinion, however, the two things that matter most in a marriage are loyalty and commitment. Without them, the foundation for a lifelong relationship is weak. It doesn’t matter whether you and your spouse are 21 or 38; if you believe in the power of perseverance and in staying the course through thick and thin, you have a much better chance at making your marriage last.
- How could a person so young know what he or she wants for the rest of his or her life?
It’s true; some people don’t know what they want in their twenties. But you want to know what else? Some forty-year-olds haven’t got a clue either. Age doesn’t guarantee clarity. That being said, just because some people don’t know what they want doesn’t mean that others don’t. Each person is wired differently and some have a certain background or personality that makes lifelong commitment appealing to them.
Are my husband and I young? Some would say so. But to me, marriage is about so much more than age. It is about having common goals, a solid support system and a partnership. Just like most things, marriage isn’t a perfect science. But when the decision to get married is made thoughtfully and for the right reasons, there’s no telling just how great it can be.
Haven’t you heard that age is just a number? 🙂