Young Marriage

“A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.” – Ariel Durant

There has been quite a lot of press recently voicing opposition to young people marrying.  Many have decried the marriage of 18-25 year olds as a terrible idea since they are “too young”. But it wasn’t long ago that such marriages would not have been thought of as unusual.

“The traditional markers of manhood — leaving home, getting an education, starting a family and starting work — have moved downfield as the passage from adolescence to adulthood has evolved,” says Michael Kimmel, author of Guyland. For instance, in 1960, almost 70 percent of men had reached these milestones by the age of 30; today, less than a third of males can say the same.

Some of the most successful marriages in the world started with two teenagers. Indeed, it is difficult to reach 75 years of marriage if one waits till he is 30 to say “I do” – you’re pretty much dead by then.

Even biology challenges us to rethink delayed marriage. According to U.S. researchers who analyzed census data and information from genealogical records, children born when their mothers were under 25 were almost twice as likely to live to their 100th birthday and beyond and University of Chicago husband and wife team Dr Leonid Gavrilov and Dr Natalia Gavrilova have shown that firstborn children live longer than their younger siblings. It appears the two are linked, with older children living longer because their mothers are younger when they have them.

Studies have also shown that it takes longer for older men to conceive. Starting in their 20s, men face steadily increasing chances of infertility, fathering an unsuccessful pregnancy, and passing on to their children a genetic mutation that causes dwarfism. “We [now] know the probability for certain types of DNA damage goes up with age, and we can give you a mathematical probability,” said Andrew Wyrobek, a researcher at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California.

Not only is it bad to our children’s health to delay marriage and child birth, this delay is also resulting in increasingly lower birth rates which may be bad for the longevity of Western culture. According to Mark Steyn, the low birth rates already at play in Europe are a prescription for the end of Western civilization.

Seventeen European nations are now at what demographers call “lowest-low” fertility – 1.3 births per woman, the point at which you’re so far down the death spiral you can’t pull out. In theory, those countries will find their population halving every 35 years or so. In practice, it will be quicker than that, as the savvier youngsters figure there’s no point sticking around a country that’s turned into an undertaker’s waiting room. So large parts of the western world are literally dying – and, in Europe, the successor population to those aging French and Dutch and Belgians is already in place.

Indeed, those who marry younger and produce more children will be the ones who will dominate the US culture in the not-too-distant future. Dr. Arthur Brooks of Syracuse University writes:

Simply put, liberals have a big baby problem: They’re not having enough of them, they haven’t for a long time, and their pool of potential new voters is suffering as a result. According to the 2004 General Social Survey, if you picked 100 unrelated politically liberal adults at random, you would find that they had, between them, 147 children. If you picked 100 conservatives, you would find 208 kids. That’s a ‘fertility gap’ of 41%… A state that was split 50-50 between left and right in 2004 will tilt right by 2012, 54% to 46%. By 2020, it will be certifiably right-wing, 59% to 41%. A state that is currently 55-45 in favor of liberals (like California) will be 54-46 in favor of conservatives by 2020—and all for no other reason than babies.

We know that sexual activity before marriage increases the likelihood of a divorce. We also know that couples who live together also have an even higher rate of divorce. But then we tell young people today that they should wait till they are almost 30 to marry – an age that will most likely guarantee they will have been already sexually active or even living with someone.

Even in the Christian community (a group who should know better) we push and encourage delayed marriage. Christian parents even threaten their young people with negative consequences if they marry young. “We won’t pay for your education!” “You’ll have to pay for your own wedding!” “We’ll disown you!” We pull all financial and emotional support from the young couple and then when they fail, we rush back to them with “I told you so…”

Mormons bring an interesting perspective to marriage. Only 6% of those who follow the demands surrounding a temple marriage end up in divorce. Six percent! But it’s not just a question of getting married in a certain place. Leaders claim it’s that the church requires the candidates for marriage to be people of character—people who stick to their commitments of love and of asking for help, if they need it. What is so striking is that many of these marriages happen between couples still in their teens!

Then there is a threat that almost no one seems to consider: the elimination of grandparents. The culture of divorce that has been ripping and tearing at our national family structure has, so far, failed to destroy us. Though the documentation of the damage divorce does to people and particularly their children is sufficiently solid, American homes (though patched and sown together) have been able to hold together to some degree. This has been in large part due to the presence of grandparents. Those wonderful people who love their grandchildren unconditionally and whose age, wisdom and financial resources have played a key role – in some cases the key role – as stabilizers in those children’s lives. Those who delay marriage (and subsequently child rearing) are denying themselves one of the greatest joys men and women have cherished for millennia: to participate in the lives of their grandchildren.

For centuries, men and women became grandparents when they were in their late 40’s and early 50’s – allowing them plenty of time to enjoy and participate in their grandchildren’s lives. Then in their 70’s and 80’s they witnessed the arrival of their great-grandchildren. People who delay marriage and family today, however, do not realize how greatly they are cheating themselves by making it virtually impossible to experience their grandchildren. And for what? An extended adolescence? To drink more beer or to experiment with more sexual partners? To focus on their careers and a chance to make money more quickly than their parents did?

If Bobby and Suzie wait till almost 30 to marry and then 35 or greater to have children and their children do the same… well just do the math – they’ll be 70 before their first grandchildren are even born. Depending on their health and longevity, they are at risk for not being able to enjoy those children’s lives.

There is an even a greater tragedy that will occur than just people not being able to enjoy their grandchildren. As I already stated, grandparents have been the very glue that has helped struggling families stay together or to at least make their grandchildren feel safe should their parent’s marriage fail. According to US Census Bureau statistics:

  • 6.1 million grandparents have grandchildren younger than 18 living with them
  • 2.5 million grandparents are responsible for most of the basic needs of one or more grandchildren
  • 918,000 grandparents have been responsible for caring for their grandchildren for at least the past five years
  • 477,000 grandparents have an income below the poverty level and are still caring for their grandchildren

But by delaying marriage and children today, we are participating in the foolish and systematic removal of grandparents altogether. When the kids of the next generation are 7, 10, or 12 years of age there won’t be many grandparents to speak of. The final blow to the American family will be complete.

Sadly, many pastors and marriage proponents themselves are participating in the destruction of the very institution they seek to save by joining in this foolish call for delayed matrimony.

No matter what the statisticians say, marriages do not fail because of age, money or education – many of the underlying arguments for delaying marriage. Such thinking is utter nonsense. Marriages fail for one reason and one reason only: one or both people become selfish. To imply that young, poor or high-school graduates are incapable of real commitment is an insult. I find it curious that we have young, poor, high-school graduates fighting for our interests overseas with great commitment – some giving the very last measure of commitment by sacrificing their very lives for their fellow soldiers.

Someday historians will write of the end of Western civilization. I am sure that our propensity for selfishness and narcissistic behaviors is what they will point to as the reason for our demise.

Advocating for delayed marriage will be just one more reason we will succeed in destroying ourselves from within.

Tags: , , , , , ,

82 Responses to “Young Marriage”

  1. Tammy says:

    I agree with this article. I have waited to marry and have children and although I don’t know how I could have done things differently, I wish that I was married with my family now!

  2. Robin Heiskell says:

    My oldest has been married for 2 years. He was 25 and his wife was 21 when they got married.. Many thought they were too young, but I encouraged them to go ahead. They are both from stong, intact families who serve God. My philosophy was get ‘em married now, God and the parents can help them with the “adjustments” later. I figured those would be easier to deal with. Your blog confirmed it. Now, I need to encourage them to get busy getting me grandkids!

  3. Ruth McGuire says:

    Some may marry late because they haven’t found someone before that. Marrying young and having grandparents “fill the gap” and take responsibilities that belong to parents seems irresponsible. The fact that there are 6.1 million grandparents with grandchildren living with them is not a plus, in my opinion. Having a good education and hopefully a satisfying career, being financially able to look after a family, knowing who you are, having time to do some travel and freedom before taking on the commitment of parenting would, I think, increase the chance of marriages lasting. I believe there are also many reasons and considerations for not marrying at a very young age.

    • Meredith says:

      I love this blog!
      My parents were approximately 20 years old when they got married. Neither of them had a real job and my mom got pregnant with my brother early on. They went through all sorts of expensive crises (mostly medical) and yet still my brother and I were able to grow up in a great home. It was loving, and we learned to live without on a lot of things. I feel like it helped me age to have young parents because I learned how to do things myself, and with proper guidance before proper money. Instead of being able to afford a lot of things, we spent time together. Somehow we managed to always have enough for food, clothes and I was still able to be fashionable, even. My parents know who they are and probably better because they were married young. They both wish they had more time to enjoy life with only each other, but I know for a fact that they do not regret getting married, and they would not trade their kids for any other past.
      When I have to make a decision, I look back and think, “Will I regret not doing this? What is the worst that could happen?” I started dating the man I now call my husband because I decided I would regret not trying more than any consequence I might encounter. It’s definitely been worth it, and I have no doubt that we will be together ’till death do we part.

  4. Laurie says:

    I also enjoy reading your stuff. Have you started your own magazine yet?
    Your info would be the greatest in all kinds of waiting rooms across the country

  5. s oster says:

    This idea of waiting goes along with the “false childhood” that the US seems to have embraced by having them in high school until 18ish. By the time a person is 18, in some cultures, they are married with kids. We expect to hold on to our teenage children and then wonder why they scream for independence. Are we doing them any favors by forcing them to stay in high school that long, when many have already turned off the “learning” switch and are only there for social reasons?

  6. C. June says:

    What a GREAT article!! I’m passing it on to all my friends. Can you imagine if many of our young people actually married BEFORE going to college? Much of the damaging socializing and recreational activities that go hand in hand at most colleges might be avoided by just knowing you were responsible to someone who was waiting at home for you.

  7. Cliff Rutter says:

    You make a truly valid point. One that is often overlooked. Thanks for a great enlightening article.

  8. Rachel says:

    This was a great article! My husband and I married the summer between our junior and senior year of college. His mother was strongly opposed to our timing, and wanted us to wait until he finished his masters, which would not be for 5 more years and would require him to move out of state. On top of this, she expected us to remain virgins for those 5 extra years. We’ve been married almost 2 years now and have found that having each other as a built in support system has made life’s challenges much easier to deal with.

  9. J Lob says:

    I married right after my 20th birthday. Although my husband and I started off the journey backwards(baby then marriage), I am glad that we made that commitment then. I think that being married helped us to make better decisions because we had to take 2 more people into consideration before doing anything. We(like any other couple) have had our problems but I still think that we made the right choice. If that means that our children (6 so far) will be smarter, healthier, and have a greater impact on the world then PRAISE GOD!!!

  10. Beth Osborne says:

    Wow, I was just thinking about this the other day. We want our children to remain virgins until they marry,and then tell them to wait to get married. How stupid. Hormones are the worst in our teens. In ancient times (Bible times) people married in their teens and lived with or near family. This is how they learned to be married and have exellent relationships, by watching,asking questions,and being taught by their elders. We have lost so much by pushing our kids out and telling them to be adults but don’t get married, just make money. Family is what will make America great and the Church as well.

    • kam says:

      that’s exactly what i thought about beth. that is SO true. i mean hormones and teenagers and WAIT! that is kinda bass ackwards. (smile)

    • Rachel G. says:

      Spot on Beth! Family is what will make a great nation, a great country and a great church. We shouldn’t not allow the enemy to rob us off God’s plan.

  11. Bridget says:

    Thanks for your support for young married couples. My husband and I have been married for just over a year now (i’m 23 and he’s 22) and my parents wanted us to wait to get married and wait another 3 or 4 to have children. I am torn between waiting to have them so I can have time with my spouse or having them young (like his parents did) and being able to enjoy them and my grandchildren in the future. I think it’s a personal decision that has to be made by the couple and not in accordance to the wishes of their parents or other family members. I agree with Rachel that they want you to wait but also want you to remain pure as virgins. That’s almost impossible to do. It has been amazing to have a spouse to share life with and have them be there to support you along the way. I thank God for my husband more each day.

  12. Danielle says:

    I am nineteen and engaged. I am getting a lot of crap from my family because we want to marry so young. One aunt has been encouraging us from the start to go a head and get married now. Now my aunt, fiancee and myself have a really awesomely written article to back us up. I have also talked to a few young couples who are doing really well and say they would change nothing. So thank you for putting this out there. Hopefully the message is heard

    • Shirley says:

      Danielle,

      I graduated from high school at 16, 2 weeks lare turned 17, two weeks later got married. A year later we had our first child. I have been happily married for 37 years! I have 3 children, 5 grandchildren, a great career and even got a Master’s degree. The best thing is I married my best friend and we still are best friends. We have always taken time to just be together and enjoy each other. We are each others encourgers. We have a common belief in God and are both saved by Jesus and this has definately made a difference on our lives. So I hope this encourages you – young marriages can work out to be wonderful! It is great to now have grown kids who are friends and to have grandkids that light up my days and a husband who lights up my life.

    • Rhonda says:

      I know it’s 2 yrs. after the fact, but it’s your life-not theirs & your business-not theirs. I hope everything has gone well for you & all the others who marry young. If God had meant us to delay marriage, then we’d go through puberty in our 20′s & 30′s-not in our teens. God bless.

    • Michelle says:

      Hey Danielle, care to share that article? I’m 18 and ready to get married to my 21 boyfriend, not have kids until like 25 though-but I’m terrified of breaking it to my parents, friends and relatives…we’ve only been going out for a year…and he’s my first boyfriend..but I love him and know we are meant for each other and he feels the same. Help?

      • sasha says:

        Same here !! im 18 looking into joining the air force and my fiancee is almost 22.only my best friend knows about our plans.i have no idea how to bring up such a huge thing while knowing i won’t be supported by my parents in it. Got any ideas or suggestions ??

  13. Alex says:

    I just turned 30yrs old this year and still not married. I always wanted to marry and settle down young but sadly all the ladies I datedwanted more time. I always thought of it exactly as the article put it, I also knew that being parents at a yound age you have the energy to stay long hours awake, handle and recoup from the irregular “baby-timings” It broke my heart whenever I was told that I was rushing into marriage (not that I proposed on the first date or month!) I wish I got married in my early 20′s, I would have been celebrating my child’s 7th birthday. My advice to young couples out there who really love God and love each other, get married, you will have some tough times sometimes, but the good times will always be incomparable to the tough. And remember and hold on to what the bible says in Ecclesiastes 4:12, a cord of 3 is not easily broken…

  14. Aaron says:

    I feel like I’ve lived both sides of this. I was crazy about a young lady when I was twenty. We dated for two years, got engaged, had some problems and I got cold feet about marrying too young, and broke it off so I could “enjoy my youth.” I dated a few other women, and one I dated for about five years. We ended up moving in together, and eventually got married. It took me five years to finally “give in” and marry this girl. It never occurred to me that there may have been a reason why I was so reluctant to marry her, compared to the relationship I was in when I was twenty, where I was really crazy for that girl, and was ready to marry her within the first six months. To make a long story short, I finally married the five year girl, it lasted two years and we got a divorce, luckily we didn’t have any children. I ran into the girl that always had a place in my heart, she also had a failed marriage. We dated for a few months, and I always knew she was the one and we got married in March 2006, and I have never been so happy. We are expecting our second child next month. We attended a “Laugh Your Way” about a year ago and it was a great experience.

  15. kam says:

    also, i waited until i was older. now my one regret is that i wish i had not listened to others and had married my husband MUCH sooner.

  16. Lissa says:

    I married my wonderful husband when I was 18 and he was 22. We had our first baby when I was just about to turn 20. #2 came 2 years later. We have been married for almost 9 fantastic years and I have never regretted “marrying young”. I worked at home to put my husband through college. He has had his Bachelor’s degree for awhile now. We have never been dependant on either one of our parents. We knew that we were responsible for each other and our children and rose to meet those responsibilities. Baby #3 is coming in August and I can’t wait!

  17. Tessa says:

    I am 18, almost 19. I started attending college at 16 years old. I met my husband when I was 17, having been raised in a Christian home I believed that long engagements were pointless, and honestly I knew within a couple months that he was the one I would marry. We married exactly 9 months from the day we started dating, we are now nearing our one year anniversary. I am taking online courses to acquire my psychology/counseling degree. We are also thinking about starting a family. We are very involved in our local church, soon we will be the new youth pastors there. I really believe that God has blessed us for honoring his commandments. We have a strong marriage, I won’t lie, the honeymoon wore off along time ago, but we are very committed to our marriage with God as our lead. And I do believe that it is wrong for our society to think that because I am young we can’t make a marriage work, here is a another thought… if you wait until you are 30 and more set in your ways, won’t it be even harder to “adjust” and stop thinking about yourself and instead about someone else. Its a proven fact the earlier you learn something the easier it is to learn it.

    • Michelle says:

      Wow Tessa. I’m 17, have known my 21 year boyfriend for 8 years, been dating for 7 months. I really didn’t know him for those 8 years though, more like acquaintances..He is my first boyfriend..I started college-dual enrolled-when I was 16 and am graduating high school next year with 24 college credits. Anyway, we are both independent, motivated people who have the same interests and goals. I know we are meant for each other and we want to get married but I’m terrified of breaking the news to my parents, relatives and friends. We will probably be engaged in another 7 months. We are both focused on our career goals and agree that we wouldn’t have kids for years, like until I’m 25 and we’re settled. The idea sounds amazing-us being supportive of each other, living together, studying together and maybe even working together at some points. It’s just that I’ll be 18 and that is really young which makes it especially hard for me because I’ll still be in high school and he’ll be 22 by then. I know my parents won’t disown me but they won’t be happy..even though they really like him. Another catch, my mom was really worried a couple months ago because she thought we were way to serious, and I told her we wouldn’t get married until after college, another 5 years…any adivice?

    • Istyna says:

      Thank you so much for the visit to my blog – I think I figured out the feed adrsdes for you (I posted it in my comments). You have a darling family, by the way! Congrats on your anniversary!

  18. Katie says:

    Thank you for this view on young marriage. My husband and I got married young this year, and so many people in our family and friends do not understand our desire to marry young and start a family young. They have no other reason than that we are so young. Its refreshing to hear this point of view. Thank you.

    • Aldrine says:

      having recently wakeld down this path there are 3 books that we read that were very helpful in forming a Biblical view of marriage and each other:Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas (one to read and re-read)When Sinners Say I Do by Dave HarveyEach for the Other by Bryan and Kathy Chapellwhile Jon and I decided in the end to not get married, all three of these books helped us to view our relationship and God in a much more Biblical light and challenged us to truly love each other with the love of Christ.

  19. Rachel G. says:

    This sight is an eye opener. I always look forward to read your posts and tags. We have always been told to wait, wait, wait… until you’re “mature enough”. Who determines when your mature enough? Usually it is the the society or culture you live in?

  20. Landon says:

    Great article. I think some people may have taken some content out of context. Unfortunately, people these days don’t grasp true love and commitment regardless of age these days. I know 40 year olds still dreamy over one night stands, reality tv bachelors, and that true love is only one more marriage away. I couldn’t imagine waiting longer to marry my wife, and it truly was beneficial in nearly every financial and loving way. The website Young and Hitched is an online community for young married couples, please check it out!

  21. Joseph Bortka says:

    I’m 15 and I’m all for early marriage. people say “you’re just a stupid teenager,” but I’ve always loved family, and I also wanna someday see my great-great-grandchildren too :P

    • Rhonda says:

      You most certainly NOT stupid Joseph. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that. You recognize good biblical advice & wisdom.

  22. Sunny says:

    I’m 16 and I agree with this article. Early marriage is the way to go, and so is large families. Everybody I know is opposed to getting married young, but I know that when the Lord brings the right person into my life, whether I’m 18 or 38, I will get married to him. I believe that one should start having babies young and depend on God to determine the number of children that you have. This is a great article, and people should definitely marry young to see grand-children and to help to rid the problem of pre-marital sex. God bless. :)

  23. Angela Rosa says:

    i am 19 years old and my boyfriend is 20,we have always spoken aout marriage ever since we were in middle school. Just joking around but now that we are maturing we are really thinking about it. But his mom and i do not get along once so ever. thisa is the only problem that we are having im scared that she may ruin our relationship and cause us to break up,even tho weve been togethor for 3 years

    • Rhonda says:

      If she does Angela, then you don’t need him anyway. Mom can’t be his wife-unless their 1 of those dysfunctional families. God bless.

  24. Michelle says:

    I’m 17, have known my 21 year boyfriend for 8 years, been dating for 7 months. I really didn’t know him for those 8 years though, more like acquaintances..He is my first boyfriend..I started college-dual enrolled-when I was 16 and am graduating high school next year with 24 college credits. Anyway, we are both independent, motivated people who have the same interests and goals. I know we are meant for each other and we want to get married but I’m terrified of breaking the news to my parents, relatives and friends. We will probably be engaged in another 7 months. We are both focused on our career goals and agree that we wouldn’t have kids for years, like until I’m 25 and we’re settled. The idea sounds amazing-us being supportive of each other, living together, studying together and maybe even working together at some points. It’s just that I’ll be 18 and that is really young which makes it especially hard for me because I’ll still be in high school and he’ll be 22 by then. I know my parents won’t disown me but they won’t be happy..even though they really like him. Another catch, my mom was really worried a couple months ago because she thought we were way to serious, and I told her we wouldn’t get married until after college, another 5 years…

    • Sunny says:

      I think that you guys should go for it. If you feel the lord giving you a peace in your heart, marry him and enjoy the life that you will have together. I will be praying for you and your husband to be! :)

  25. Chelsea says:

    Thank you so much for all your great teachings, you’ve really encouraged my parents to realise young marriages can be amazing .. We watched you preach at Maranatha in Johannesburg a few months ago and my mom then said I could get married at 19.. I’m about to turn 18 and I’m in the last year of school, although I don’t know what I want to study I know God wants me to marry my boyfriend of 2 and a half years.. We’ve known from the start.. So I just want to thank you for the work your doing!! God bless- Chelsea

  26. Alison says:

    I love reading your views on this topic. My 18 year old daughter just got engaged & will be getting married next year just after her 19th birthday. There has been quite a bit of negativity about this from various sources. Among other things, people seem to think that her age gives them the right to ask her if she’s pregnant (she’s not), which is so insulting to a young couple who have saved themselves for marriage. People just don’t think before they speak.

  27. Lisa says:

    Very interesting, but… What if you do get married and even though the dating was perfectly fine and you’re both on the same wavelength, you end up feeling you’re not quite rught for eachother? Perhaps the sex isn’t good – that’s a reason as good as any since marriage is part of starting a family. You can’t make children without sex and crappy sex is crap.

    Just a thought… I don’t think marrying young is wrong, but it doesn’t hurt to wait A BIT, does it.

    • Ilse Maree says:

      To all the young people out there – when you have found the one that the Lord has ordained for you – get married! As someone who married when she was 35 years old (had a child at 29)I can honestly say that I wish I had this teaching in my teens – it would have saved me a lot of heartache. You can still do all the fun things as a couple – you do not need to be single for that.

      Get married kids – and hopefully you will have parents and family who will support and encourage you through the difficult times.

    • Brianna says:

      As a woman who waited until marriage to have sex (my husband did as well), i can tell you that I dont believe that sex can be “bad” between two people who love each other. Yes there are times when it isnt as good as others, but sex is about intimacy and communicating with each other. If you love each other and tell each other what you need, your sex will be great. Fear of “bad sex” isnt a reason to wait to get married.

  28. Amanda says:

    I am 19 and recently engaged. I’ve seen my parents go through a lot, but they’ve stayed together and I take marriage very seriously. Just today at work a co-worker who is old enough to be my mother noticed my ring. Then came the two question I silently dread: How old are you? and Why so young? Both my fiancé’s parents and mine are supportive, but it still bothers me when I get the implied, “you’re too young” from strangers and acquaintances. Not surprisingly, it’s the elderly strangers I encounter who are most excited: the idea isn’t as foreign to them. I suppose I’m a bit old fashioned. I appreciate all the practical reasons you provide for why “young” marriage can be beneficial.

  29. Caitlin says:

    My boyfriend and i have had conversations about our views on marriage. his family married at young ages and my family married after 25/30 years of age at least…im in the middle but im pushing for being in favor of young marriage… i think if its well planned and if the couple genuinely love each other then it shouldnt be a bad idea. i see how people would like to finish college and have a house before they get married, but i like the idea of being engaged for awhile so there is committment but also a lot of room for planning.

  30. Katie says:

    I have been dating my boyfriend for nearly a half a year now and we have been looking at engagement rings lately. He has even asked my mothers blessing. I believe he plans to ask me to marry him once I turn 18 in the Summer. Before reading this article, I was worried about what others would think or the success rate of our marriage would be, now I have more hope than ever. Ian is my best friend and the love of my life. I have been a devoted Christian since I was nine but his family isn’t as religious as mine. The good news is that he has taken interest in becoming apart of my church. I am more thrilled than ever now.

  31. Mason says:

    Me and my girlfriend have been together for a solid 4 years. We have known eachother since the 1st grade, and now we are considering marriage. We are both only 18 and I was shaken by it (I know typical guy ;) however I can say that the biggest obstacle will be the lack of support. I want to give my future wife my vows today, but support from the people around you say a lot. We may be young, and if you’ve been in our position, “When you know, you just know”. I would like to say to everyone out there that has a young couple close to you who is considering the same path, to give them your support. Whether you may think so or not or you can walk a mile in their shoes, the two in love know what they want everytime. I encourage you not to be that person to stand in the way. Regardless, the day I call the love of my life, my wife is coming soon :)

  32. Melissa says:

    My husband was 19 and I was 24 when we got married. His family thought we were too young to but my mom and step dad were every supportive. Now it has been almost two years since we have been married and everything is going great. Of course we argue sometimes but always talk it out and make up. Were now expecting our first child a girl and my husband surprisingly is very happy and excited about it. So, even though we had pressure to not get married by some we still did and it is working out great. We also didn’t have sex or even french kiss till we were married and I am very happy about that.

  33. Stephen says:

    I’m 24, turning 25 in a few days, and I’ve generally understood young marriage to be God’s intention for couples, taking the hints and principles from Scripture to lead in that way, and when I heard Gungor talk about this subject on the Singles and Stinking Thinking DVD, it solidified that conviction. But I have the problem of wanting SO BAD to get married, and have for years, but have NEVER been able to secure a girlfriend. I can count on one hand the number of dates I’ve been on in my whole life. I’m surrounded by young adults who buy into the “waiting is better” approach, and it’s driving me CRAZY. I NEED to get married, but nobody around me is willing to give me a try because everyone (including the young adults) thinks we (the young adults) are much too young. Argh.

  34. Sarah says:

    Hi. I’m 16 years old and have been in an on-and-off relationship for not quite 2 years. I am sixteen and my boyfriend is 18, we started dating at 14 and 16. We got back together about 4 months ago and made a commitment to stay together and we are stronger than ever now. We have matured so much since we have been together. We had though about getting engaged in a year or two when I am 17 or 18, but my parents are always lecturing me and giving me reasons why I shouldn’t marry young. And I haven’t even told them our plans yet. My boyfriend and i both believe 18 years of your life is more than enough to “be a kid” or “live young and free”. We want to start our lives while we are still young and have a lot of energy and drive. But when we decide to marry I am almost completely sure we will get little or no support and things are going to blow up. Help???

  35. Will says:

    Your post was very different and presented the answer to question of young marriage in a rare approach these days; historical depth. Thank you for pulling back the covers regarding this topic. According to recent research from the Barna Group young people that are in search of God and being a part of today’s church are not looking for a entertainment or a watered down message that has becoming the “new normal” in many churches today. To many surprise, they want to be taught the uncompromising truth of the scriptures. According to the report their not looking for what they can get at the mall, coffee shop or other conventional resource. They like to go deep so they want spiritual depth. We need to present marriage from a historical and right foundation perspective as well to them. Great article. Thanks again!

  36. Dan says:

    I agree that marriage should be entered into at a young age. I was married at age 31 and absolutely love my wife. However, I do wish that I would have married earlier just so I could spend more of my life with her. It is a difficult topic as I was at a point in my early twenties where there were some character deficiencies that I knew I need to address. Once I began to work on those and accepted my role as a man I was in the late 20′s. It was then I met my wife to be. I am not too discouraged though, many bible characters were married “later in life” and lived long lives. :)

  37. Mark Moore says:

    This is a great article. My wife and I were 16 and 17 when we married. And though we were pretty young we now enjoy 31 years of marriage, 5 grandsons and good health. In 1982 we were shunned by most of our family when we married (except for my Christian grandparents and Aunt) but we have prevailed and God is good!

  38. Brianna says:

    I agree with this article completely. I married my husband at 20 and we couldn’t have made a better decision! We were strongly criticized by many people, but chose to ignore that. I also think that living the single life until you are 30+ causes you to become a more selfish person because that’s the lifestyle you get used to. Thanks for the encouraging article!

  39. Randall says:

    Two things: 1) My niece got married nearly 11 years ago. Her husband was 21 and Michelle was 16. I was extremely skeptical. Well, they’re still married and have three great kids. 2) My wife and I got married when I was 26 and she was 32. We’ve been married for 24 years. I have told her recently that I wish we had met and married five years earlier. Obviously, I can’t go back in time but, as good as our marriage has been, I wish we would have started when we were younger. The more I read about it, I’m more and more in favor of young marriage.

  40. Pat says:

    Very eloquently stated! I have often wondered how the church expects young people to stay pure with this delayed marriage philosophy!

  41. Maria says:

    I agree to not wait too long to get married, but I do feel making such an important decision at a too early age (like teenage) can work against you… A love relationship can look so wonderful when we are teens but it can be quite shocking when we wake up to the reality of married life. Especially when we think that married life is the way movies portray it… which nowadays is so easy for young kids to do.

    Also to marry just for the sake of marrying young should not be the point. The point is to marry the right person and at the right time and only once you get to know each other well -whether that is at a young age or at a not so young age.

    I married very young and it was a huge flop. Looking back I don’t think none of us were mature enough to realise what a huge responsibility it is to get married and share our lives together. I think a lot depends on the level of maturity of the two people involved.

    Meeting several people and even if just as friends and experiencing other relationships can be beneficial as this helps us to identify what we want and what we don’t want in a long term (for life) relationship.

  42. Natalie says:

    I would have to agree with this study, I started dating my husband at 16, he was 19. We married at 18 he was 21. I had my first baby at age 19,and next month we will have our 18th wedding anniversary. I believe when there are many partners involved the bond is broken and there are trust and faithfulness issues, people don’t take marriage seriously if it doesn’t work out we will just get divorced! Our marriage is not perfect, I dare anyone say there’s is. It takes love, compassion, compromise, trust , and faith! We have a daughter that is a senior in high school she has a boyfriend,of course it scares me to death! I think we as young married couples may have felt we missed out on LIFE. Didn’t get to experience being a kid per say. Had to grow up too fast! Just want the best for our kids. For them to not to have to struggle with money and bills, but maybe we all need to go through that it makes us wise. Being a middle child I had to learn from my older siblings mistakes and set an example for the younger one. Come to find out I would learn by making my own mistakes. That’s how it really works!!

  43. LKH says:

    AMEN!!! to the article on ‘Young Marriage’. Im 51 and Im glad my son got married at 21.5 yrs of age. I encouraged him to do so because he had asked GOD to close the door on his relationship with Kt if it wasnt what GOD wanted for him. GOD kept the door wide open and the kids were so attracted to each other & it was obvious that they loved each other, because while they were datin, they didnt seem to be aware of anyone else’s presence. I felt it was better for them to be “tempted” within the bounds of wedlock.
    AND! they have blessed me and my husband with TWO PRECIOUS WONDERFUL GRANDchildren. (actually the 2nd one will be here in December)

  44. Elaine Ruiz says:

    I really appreciate this article and agree wholeheartedly that age has little to do with a successful marriage, as long as both parties are mature enough to appreciate the gravity of their commitment. I married at age 19 and our first son was born when I was 20. He also married young and I became a grandmother at age 42! I absolutely love that my husband and I are young to enjoy our grandchild (anxiously awaiting more!). It is truly a blessing to have that opportunity. It really makes sense also that the longer a person waits to marry, the more complications there could be upon marriage. By age 30 there have likely been multiple relationships (and sexual activity) and a higher level of selfishness and independence that would not easily be surrendered. There is also a greater chance that, if you wait till those later years, the person you may want to marry has already been through divorce and/or has children. That is certainly not ideal for any person’s first marriage to be faced immediately with the complexities of a broken family.

  45. Jeff says:

    My wife and I were married at 19 yrs of age, one year out of high school. We helped each other through college and raised (Still are raising two) 4 children, that was 27 years ago. We did not have a lot but we had each other.

    Jeff

  46. anne says:

    My husband and I got married 6 months after we met, I was 18 and he was 21. We just celebrated 7 years married. My family was completely and whole heatedly against it and so disowned me. None of my family came to our wedding which we paid for all on a own. His family knew their son very well and loved me so were very supportive (they got married at 18 and 21 too). We were very very poor for the first two years because I was sick. We cared for my mother “together” for 1.5 years before she died. Now we have lived in 5 countries, are buying a house, have no debt and a cat. We don’t want kids, personal choice. It completely urks my family that we are so happy while all their kids are divorced after getting married at 30. We are ridiculously happy together and bonus point: everyone still thinks we’re kids who know nothing … the jokes on them!

  47. Susie Higgins says:

    You are such an inspiration and always uplifting and encouraging. My husband and I have celebrated 18 years married and we have two amazing children, 14 and 11 years old respectively. We married young at 21 years old and God is still our provider and blesses us beyond belief. There is no wealth you can possess but a healthy, happy, loving and rewarding marriage and healthy families. We encourage both our children to find happiness and marry when they are younger. It is so much easier to grow ‘together’ and live out God’s unique assignment on your life as you can stretch and learn together. When you go without when you are younger – you truly don’t feel like you are missing out! Who can put a price on the blessing of the gift of life!

  48. Elannah says:

    It is refreshing to read an article from the opposite view. I strongly disagree on our culture’s view on appropriate marriage age.
    My husband and I married in our early twenties and people still say “oh you’re married” or “you’re too young”. Well I’m already married and they don’t know us!

    I can’t imagine what I would do without my grandparents. It makes be sad to think that grandparents will be something rare. I was lucky to know my great grandmother..

  49. Tina says:

    I met my husband at age 14 we were married in 1984 when I turned 18 he is 6 years older than I am. We are happily married and have been for 29 years. Looking back at life I felt I missed out on a lot getting married so young. I did I missed out on a whole lot of sin. I am so glad I got married young so I could grow up with my husband and become the person I am today. If you get married late you are already a complete person who has to change to accommodate another person a husband in your life. You get set in your ways. By getting married young you can grow together and become one. I do think young people should get an education before having a family but I am not against kids marrying young. I fear I will not be able to enjoy grandchildren as my children are now in the mid to late 20′s and no sign of marriage yet. I hope I can be there for them if they ever get married. Kids today are to selfish to get married. It is all about them and no one else.

  50. Kathi says:

    I love your weekly newsletter. It is right on with what is going on with marriage and life in general. Keep talking, keep teaching. It is important!

    I share your article each week with friends and family!

    Kathi

  51. Josh says:

    I got married when I was 20, but I’d just like to say I found many of these statistics secondary to your points. I also find it a disservice to completely rely on the elderly for help with your marriage/kids.

  52. Lewis Rempel says:

    For a long time now I have been in favor of young marriages. My Oldest children (3 of them) were all married before the age of 20. My oldest son has been married for 9 years and has 2 wonderful children. I have seen how getting married at an early age has helped all of them in their relationships. Getting married young has forced them to take on more responsibilities, be more accountable to their spouse, it has kept them out of trouble, it has helped them mature and grow together in thought, goals and unity. Rather than come together later in life with a kinds of baggage of past relationships, they have come together without all that stuff. I also was married at the age of 18, my wife was 17 and we have been married now for 28 years. Young marriage is a wonderful thing, when the young people getting married have a supporting family around them.

  53. Kayla Hutchinson says:

    I love this article. It makes so many valid points that I am always racking my brain to share my reasoning on wanting to marry young but can never find the words. I am 19 and my boyfriend of over 2 years is planning on proposing very soon according to him. I have mentioned to my parents and asked how they would feel if I got married young and they threaten to cut me off completely (they are paying for my college as of right now) so hearing this come from my parents is heart breaking I want to more than ever to share this with them and it is very discouraging. But after reading articles like this I become more and more confident in following my heart, thank you for sharing this blog.

  54. Jaaziel Ozuna says:

    I do agree when you say that marriages end because of selfishness. If someone were to wait until they are 25-30 to get married because they want to travel, find themselves, get their career on a role, etc. would that be considered selfish? When a couple does marry I would find it smart to take a couple years before having a family to enjoy their husband/wife.

    I agree that you shouldn’t wait until your late 30′s to have kids because it increases medical challenges, BUT if you rush into a marriage because you’re in love without giving it much thought I can find that to be just as selfish. I think its a balance of both, getting married too young isn’t too smart but getting married much later in life can cause problems as well.

  55. Lexi says:

    We extend adolescence and prolong the transition into things like career and family because of an increasing need for education in a society with a failing economy that is now forced to compete on a global scale. I would disagree by saying that many people in their early 20′s these days do not delay marriage because of selfishness, disinterest in marriage, or a desire for more sexual partners, but instead due to a lack of financial security. People in their early 20′s are forced to continue living with their parents or depend on their parents for some sort of financial support because they graduate from college thousands of dollars in debt to an economy where they are forced to work several minimum wage jobs in order to gain resume experience that may or may not get them hired one day. Getting married in such a state just adds to the chaos. Give twenty somethings a break. They can’t graduate from highschool, go to college, get a job, get married, buy a house and have a couple kids by the age of 21 anymore.
    It’s not realistic by today’s standards for ANYONE.

  56. Josh says:

    My girlfriend and I are both 19 and in college. We’ve been dating since freshmen year and have seriously considered the idea of getting married at a young age (20 or 21). However, my parents were married late in life and her parents were too. My parents divorced after 17 years of marriage. Her parents are still married, but have a pretty crappy marriage.

    We’ve done a lot of reading into what makes marriages successful from a biblical standpoint and we have been amazed to find that the church and families, biblically, should actually be encouraging their children to marry in the age range of 18-25 because it promotes maturity and selflessness, two qualities society desperately need.

    I appreciate seeing a site that statistically backs up why it is (scientifically) a good idea to get married young. However, if you could post in the future about how to get our parents (all of whom basically have failed relationships) to agree with us, that’d be really useful.

    Thanks!

  57. MizzNelle says:

    I have been engaged for a few months now. I have known my fiance for about 6 years. We both are 20 and are planning on getting married. I believe that true love has a say . And praying and asking God if the relationship is ordained by him. My fiance is still a little iffy about marriage but patience ist he key. The main thing is to be on the same page. Being married young takes a mature and made up mind. But waiting and delaying may cause you to lose out on the one thats willing to spend the rest of his or her life with you.

  58. Heather B says:

    I come from a small town in Michigan; a town with only recently one stop light where I graduated from the same high school as my grandparents. My parents were married right out of high school as was most of my family and friends. Let me tell you something, they are all still happily married. With Christ at the helm of their marriages and good upbringings, their marriages are solid. They all have a few years on me because I decided to break the mold, move to the big city and marry at 28, an old maid in my neck of the woods. My parents have been married 48 years this month. It’s all about God and commitment to Him and each other whether you marry young or older. I just finished reading a great new book for wives, whether young or old, starting out or seasoned spouse. It’s called “The Wholehearted Wife: 10 Keys to a More Loving Relationship,” by Erin, Greg and Gary Smalley. Biblical, inspirational, affirming. One of my favorite quotes is, “Jesus is the ultimate source of our fulfillment in life. As our Creator and Savior, He is the only one who can affirm our value and meet our deepest needs. When our identities are anchored in Christ, the peace,freedom, and joy He gives us aren’t dependent on our husbands or our marriages – or anything else!” I highly recommend it! http://www.tyndale.com/The-Wholehearted-Wife/9781624051463#.U6upS14Q7wI

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>