When I was in college I wanted to get married. And I would have, except I didn’t meet Steve till I was 25 and in graduate school. Seems that’s fairly common these days. The average age of first marriage is at a high of 26 for women and 27 for men.
We didn’t have the opportunity to marry young. But a lot of young people are rethinking the notion that it’s always better to wait till after graduation to get married. There are a lot of benefits to marrying early. And I love having the opportunity to talk about them! That’s why I was glad to answer the following email.
I am 20 years old and am dating another junior who attends my university. I started a very public courtship in my freshman year (two years ago) that was encouraged by my church and pastor, as well as our young adult church group, and many of our older married friends. Our parents like our relationship and have been very open and honest, critiquing when they find areas in need of improvement. We have not fallen into sexual sin and we are regularly held accountable by our pastor, as well as both of our parents. Many people have commented that we are truly a blessing to each other and our relationship has allowed us to contribute more greatly to our church and small groups.
Should we continue dating for the next two years while we wait for our marriage date to roll around? I don’t want to break up and then ruin our relationship so that we won’t get married, but I am also concerned about lines we might cross having to wait another two years to get married. He studied abroad this summer and I am studying abroad in the fall so that we can spend time apart to make sure we are seeing our relationship with clearer eyes, and so that we can have distance to prevent falling into sexual sin. I am still worried about the length of time we have been dating and will be dating before we get married. Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated.
You can read my reply, “Marry in School” here. Young marriage is making a comeback. But that doesn’t mean there’s broad support for the idea. Not yet, anyway.