Our young adult children, and the young adult children of our friends, are finding more and more of their friends getting married, getting pregnant, and shackin up. This makes for lively discussions and entertaining social media banter.
Every time I hear someone is 19 and getting married, I assume someone’s pregnant or those poor kids are saving themselves for marriage, and it’s gettin harder and harder to wait for the sex.
I suppose some people are positively frightened of being alone.
Or maybe they’re afraid no one better will come along.
Maybe they think it will make them a grown-up.
I can only presume weddings seem like the most magical things ever.
I’m going to generalize the fuck out of this post, so if you married young, and had babies right away, and you’re now over the age of thirty and still quite happy, then I commend you, and this post is not about you.
In keeping with generalizations, if you married young, and years later, you still don’t have a baby, because you don’t want a baby, you’re obviously exceptional, and congratulations on living through people asking you daily, “When are you going to have children?” and the even more vicious, “You’ll change your mind when you’re older” comment.
And in the same generalized format, if you’ve reached “a certain age” and you’re still willfully unmarried and/or childless, then I want you to throw really cool parties like this:
I have been to gobs of weddings, and most of them were terrible. Several weddings involved me asking the bride if she was sure she wanted to go through with it.
I know happiness when I see it, and I don’t see it too often at weddings. When I attend a happy wedding, I am damn near euphoric, and eager to drink and dance.
I even hated my own wedding.
As soon as The Mister and I got into the car after the reception, we looked at one another and said, in unison, “We should’ve eloped.”
A good marriage lasts a lot longer than a bad wedding.
See, no one can really define what makes a marriage work. I mean, we throw around words like honesty, trust, communication, and compromise, but the definitions and boundaries of those words vary from user to user, and they change over time.
The thing is, only the people in the marriage can make the marriage, and only the people in the marriage can define it.
Now, I view marriage as a secular thing, so I don’t want to read what your particular god has to say about marriage. Adam and Steve are my family and friends, so your “morality” is of no interest to me.
What the hell do 18-19-20-year-olds know about marriage? Probably not any more or any less than grown-ass people do. They just don’t seem to consider reality…
Young people say really ridiculously cute things like, “She’ll go to school full-time and I’ll work full-time.”
And I ask questions that are equally cute and absurd, like, “Where will the baby be while y’all are doin that?”
They’ll work it out, they say. Then they smile at one another and squeeze their held hands.
Young people say things like, “I don’t know if I’ll ever want children.” Well, that’s pretty vague, yo. I’ve yet to meet any couples who have halfa baby because one wanted a child and one didn’t. Unless something is medically wrong, or people are surgically invested in sterility, babies just kinda happen with sexual activity.
Grown-ass people are liberated from their parents. They’ve dated plenty. They’ve tried on a lot of different people. They’ve experienced the demands of a career. They’ve traveled. They’ve purchased a car, or a property, or an insurance policy. They’ve managed their own money. Maybe they’ve even grown a plant or kept a pet.
They have a life to merge with someone else’s life.
The older you are, the more educated you are, the more likely your marriage will last. Having faith or hobbies or interests in common increases that likelihood.
Getting married right out of high school or college doesn’t leave you any time to be yourself, as one individual. Why would anyone want to miss out on that? Skipping a milestone entirely, there.
Sometimes, my girls want lots and lots of babies. Then some days, they say they’re never going to have children. I tell my girls all the time, “You gotta have that time, where you’re completely independent. When you have a job and a life all your own. You must LIVE. You gotta drink and dance and spend way too much money on shoes and music and books. Once you get married or have children, you can’t get it back.”
Your parents are still paying on your orthodontia.
You haven’t graduated high school.
You think FICA is like the SAT.
You still haven’t passed your driver’s test.
You don’t know how you got pregnant.
Your mom still does your laundry.
You aren’t old enough to drink the champagne at your own wedding.
You need a work permit.
You don’t know your social security number.
My advice to young love is to wait it out and see where life takes you. Be a whole person, ready to commit to another whole person. Make sure what’s offered is a huge improvement to your life, because marriage won’t fix your problems. Marriage will create new problems. Marriage is a lot of work. But then, I really don’t know anything, because I’m not young enough to be completely deluded. I’ve only got EXPERIENCE.