Topic: Married Very Young?

Now most of you probably have very small children but you  might come across this in years to come....my son is 19...His girlfriend just turned 18...they came to me tonight to show me her engagement ring...(no pregnancy)...they are going to do what they want to do that is for sure and I like Emily but I do think they are too young and immature to make a lifelong commitment...what do you think?

2 (edited by Jen727BF 2013-11-27 20:27:39)

Re: Married Very Young?

I personally agree its too young.  What is the rush?  I would rather they try living together first before marriage, but that is me.  I use to tell my mom when I was in my early twenties how strange it was that at my age she had been married and had two kids.  I couldn't imagine having that on my plate and not living an unmarried life.  With that said, it works for some people, but I think its not very common.  My high school best friend just knew she met the love of her life and got married at 18.  Two yrs. later she was divorced.  Turns out she felt she needed to live life.

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Re: Married Very Young?

I got married too young the first time. However my first marriage taught me a lot about myself so I wouldn't change it for anything.

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Re: Married Very Young?

I think it depends on the person, but I also think that no matter what a parent is going to worry because it is very young. I've been with DP since I was 16 and she was 21, and now I'm going to be 30 next year. You never know.

Re: Married Very Young?

i, too, think it depends on the person.  i am not "built" for that, for sure.  not even sure i'm made for marriage at all.  when i was 15, my boyfriend and i had a scare.  i thought i might be pregnant.  we talked about going to a nearby state where it was legal to marry at 15.  it seemed like a dream scenario to me at the time.  i would have done anything to marry him.  now i can't imagine being married to him.  it seems bizarre.  i have lived a pretty big life since then. 

on the other hand, i have a cousin who is married to her highschool sweetheart.  they are just adorable together.  she is just a few years younger than me, so she and her hubby have been together forever.  it works for them.  she is someone who doesn't want a hugely complicated life.  she is happy to be at home in an old farmhouse in the country, being a SAHM with a home bakery business, raising their five kids.  it's bliss to her.  it would be maddening to me!

Re: Married Very Young?

I got married at (barely) 19 to a man who was 10 years older than me.  We lived together for about a year before that.  We were divorced just before I turned 21. 

My circumstances were probably different than your son's, but I had absolutely no idea what to do with my life at that point other than marry the first person who paid attention to me and get out of my dysfunctional parents' house.  I lived in a small Midwest town and that was the thing to do: getarried and have kids.  I knew I liked girls, and so did my husband, but I never saw moving out of town and "finding myself" as an option.

Do I think it's a good idea to get married before, say, 25?  No.  I think kids (cause that's what they are) should figure out who they are before they decide that they have found someone else to commit a lifetime to.  But they will do what they want.  Let them get married and then maybe divorced a few years later, or maybe they really are soulmates and they'll stay together.  Who knows?  But I don't knowthat there's anything you can say to them that will change their minds.

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Re: Married Very Young?

P.S. babybaby, your friend's situation with the farmhouse, SAHM and bakery sounds like my dream.  It's on my bucket list to open a bakery someday, I love old farmhouses, and I'd love to be a SAHM and bake and clean and decorate and take kids to piano lessons all day.

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Re: Married Very Young?

It seems young to me too, but H and I have been together since we were 19.. So it's possible.
Good luck to them, perhaps you can encourage a long engagement!

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Re: Married Very Young?

Yes, that is probably "too young," but I think more important than the age is how long they've been a couple and what their relationship has been like during that time.  Is there any chance they'll consider a long engagement before making the legal commitment?  Finances are one of the most common causes of divorce, and young people just entering adulthood are usually not financially stable.

Re: Married Very Young?

@scorpiogrl7:  i won't lie.  when i look at her pics on fb (she lives a state away), i sometimes get a little jealous.  it's a charming life.  they are still so happy together, after all these years.  ^K&H are another great example of a couple who were fortunate to find the right person at a young age.  smile 

@oldmama:  i like K&H's idea of not being totally opposed to it (it could work, and anyway, young people generally LOVE to do the opposite of what their parents tell them to do), but encouraging them to have a long engagement instead.

Re: Married Very Young?

shauna2710 wrote:

I got married too young the first time. However my first marriage taught me a lot about myself so I wouldn't change it for anything.


this exactly, for me too

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Re: Married Very Young?

It also sounds young to me. But Ali and I were together when I was 18. Had Bronx when I was almost 22, and York at 24. The odds are against them but if they are mature and responsible enough, it can be done!

Re: Married Very Young?

I have a friend who made something similar work - she's with her high school sweetheart, but they did wait until they were almost out of college (one was 20, the other 21) to marry - then they had 4 kids within the next 5 years too. They've had rough patches in their marriage but they stuck it out & are either at a place where they're happy or they've resigned themselves to do a damn good job of pretending they're happy!

So I think with some people it can work. How long have they been together? Have you considered paying for some kind of premarital counseling for them so they can make sure they're on the same page about the big stuff - money, kids, how to handle disagreements, etc?

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14 (edited by EMG_REL 2013-11-28 09:57:26)

Re: Married Very Young?

R and I were together from when I was 18 and she was 22 until I was 23 and she was nearly 28; then, we parted ways for a few years. At the time, I was devastated and went through a dysfunctional other relationship, but I am so happy in the long run that I experienced other things outside of "us" to make me appreciate "us" even more. We got back together when I was 27 and she was 31, and I'm not sure we could be any happier now. My point is that there really is something to be said for "finding yourself" on your own when you're young, but of course it's different for everyone. If we had stayed together through our younger, less mature days, we definitely wouldn't be in the stable place where we are now.

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Re: Married Very Young?

I got married when I was barely 18 and he was 20. We had a 1 1/2 year old daughter at the time. We split up 2 years later when I was 5 months pregnant....with twins because he said he wasn't ready for the responsibility of being a dad....now mind you he was already a dad when we got married!!!  So it just depends on the person and their maturity level IMO

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Re: Married Very Young?

We live in a society where the divorce rate is 50% and climbing.  Years ago there was no divorce.  People married in their late teens, there was a defined head of the household who had final say, and you had to deal with things.  In the last 100 years things have changed.  Equality means there is no one person with final say but as a society we never learned compromise.  Medical miracles extended our life expectancy giving us more time to spend in school and developing profitable careers before establishing a home and growing a family. 

But basic biology did not change.  Puberty, hormones, attraction, and the desire for a mate is the same now as is was centuries ago.  Maybe off by just a couple of years ... instead of 8-11 we're now at 10-13.  With that in mind, the desire for a mate and home and family at 18-19 is perfectly normal.

That said, what I'm teaching my kids is the difference between subsistence living and and higher-end material success.  They can start a family in their teens, get jobs, and make it just fine.  Working at minimum wage or learning a trade.  And prettty much living paycheck to paycheck or very frugally for life.  OR ... they can hold off, go to school, start a career, and start a family in their late twenties.  Earning 50% more, having jobs or professions with upward mobility, insurance, and vacation plans.  Standard of living skyrockets. 

Happiness isn't dependent on income though.  My 5 year old has just as much fun going to the park and community pool as she does at Disney or a cruise.  It's different for me though.  I want the cruise!  If your kids are set on this course, I would explain the economic difference in waiting, and then support the decision they make.  Because in the end they are going to do what they want.  You just get to decide how happy you can be with it!

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