5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Marrying Young
Starting Off Young
My husband and I were both 21-years-old when we got married. He pursued my friendship and heart for 5 years, we dated for 3 months, we were engaged for 6 months, and we have been so overjoyed with the gift that marriage has been to us since then. We went from the speed of molasses to a whirlwind in no time flat, and it was altogether perfect for us. I was afraid of marrying young, but I felt such a peace about it.
Our decision to get married was something that we both prayed about, talked hour and hours and hours about, fasted about, and sought godly counsel about. We found so much confirmation that we were following the right path, and felt such a peace in our hearts that this was the direction we were to take. And you know what? It’s been absolutely awesome!
My husband is my best friend, my greatest supporter, a strong foundation for our family, a pillar of character and integrity, a hard-working provider, a man with a heart after God, and a servant-hearted and compassionate soul. He is the bomb diggity, and I’m totally smitten with him!
The Road Less Traveled
But our choice to married young has not always been well received. Especially considering neither of us has a Bachelor’s degree or house payments or years of life lived wisdom that the world would think that we need. I really had to move beyond the fear of “what if” and trust that God was trustworthy in bringing us to this place. We had full support from our families and from those around us when we got married! But the more we lived our lives, people seemed to be completely shocked at our choices. Co-workers, classmates, grocery cashiers – you name it! They all want to know what the heck we were thinking.
Our story is totally unique to us – and not for everyone! If you aren’t looking into marriage or on this path, that’s okay! There are so many things I wish I had cherished before I got married. But I’m so thankful for the road we traveled. It sometimes is a better fit for some to marry later in life, to finish school first, to own a home first – whatever unfolds for you! But if your story is anything like ours and your facing fear of marrying young because it’s not always the popular opinion – here are 5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Marrying Young!
5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Marrying Young
1. Finishing School/Beginning A Career Are Not Permanent Situations
This was a pretty big hangup for us for about… 2 hours. And then we moved on. On paper, it may have seemed more convenient to wait until all of our ducks were in a row as far as a college degree or a career path goes. But the truth is that we found so much peace in the truth that our current season of life is not a permanent situation. One day, we will finish our Bachelor’s degree. One day, careers will be settled. That day may not be today, but that is okay!
We both tried to work full-time and go to school full-time when we first got married, and we found it wasn’t worth the cost for our relationship. So we did have to adjust a bit. I have three Associate’s degrees and I’m hitting pause on school for now. Tyler is working on becoming a CPA – which we are super excited about and invested in! And in due time I will continue my education. But this minor change in schedule hasn’t been a regret. If anything, we are able to support each other more during this time and spur one another on more than we ever were able to on our own.
The reality is that this situation isn’t forever, but we are so thankful that we are getting to encourage one another as we work towards greater things.
2. Finances will establish Themselves In Due Time
I remember thinking right before we got married that there is NO way we could afford it. I felt like I was living paycheck to paycheck as it was, and was never able to even dream of paying for my own apartment. I think I became afraid of what it would be like to need to buy everything for our new home or to pay for every single bill ourselves, or to just become more financial independent. I thought there was absolutely. no. way!
And then, one day, we decided to sit down and make a budget together – just to see how it would work out. It totally did. My perception of how my financial situation was not ready for marriage really didn’t include the fact that now it would be our financial situation. With two incomes, it was so much easier to figure out how everything could come together.
Our bills, savings, extra towards paying off debt and some spending money were all totally there. We just had to figure out what our priorities are, set in place some good ground rules, and work hard together.
Eventually, a house will come. And one day we will finish paying off our debt (here’s to looking at you, college loans!). We take it one day at a time! And it allows us to be creative in having fun together! But with making a budget, having savings in place, and progressively working together – we know that everything will come to pass in due time! The same goes for any couple. Intentionality, teamwork, and a solid budget to go off of are all you need to start moving in the right direction.
3. The Marriage Advice You’re Receiving Might Not Entirely Be Truthful
If I had a nickel for every single time that someone told me, “Just make it through the first year of marriage! If you can make it through the first year, you can make it through anything!” we probably wouldn’t have those college loans we talked about to pay off anymore. In retrospect, this marriage advice was two things: pessimistic, and absolutely not true.
The first year of our marriage was so much fun. We had a blast learning together, getting to make memories together, making a home together, and just be able to start building dreams together. Of course, it also came with some growing pains and learning to adjust. It wasn’t all roses and rainbows, but it was the best year I had gotten to experience so far. And things have gotten progressively sweeter.
But seriously, what kind of advice is telling a young couple to expect the worst? That isn’t life-giving at all! Not all marriage advice you receive will be entirely truthful, for two reasons!
1. Everyone’s story is different. There is definitely some good truth to stand on when entering marriage, and the Bible is a terrific source for that. Godly counsel and pre-marital counseling are amazing resources to build a solid understanding of how important it is to have a marriage centered on Christ. But there are so many differences between culture, upbringing, preferences and stages of life that a lot of advice needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
2. If it isn’t speaking life, don’t even listen. The tongue has the power of life and death, and unless someone is giving you wisdom about pursuing life-giving advice – it really isn’t worth your time. My first year of marriage was spent expecting things to crumble and having to pick up the pieces because everyone told me that it should and would be the worst thing to endure. But this advice didn’t turn out true at all, and my expectation of something negative dampened my ability to dive all in and enjoy it fully.
4. You Will Value Learning and Growing Together
I love that we got married young because we have already gotten to learn so much together. As we grow through different seasons, we are able to lean on one another and we are able to enjoy the process a bit more because our best friend is by our side. This is something I will totally cherish forever, and these moments draw us closer together.
For example, I went through my first job transition a few months ago. When I first start working 2009, I loved the company I was working for and the people I worked with. I grew in that job for 7 years and am so thankful for the time I had there. But when God opened a new door to move on to a different job and I felt compelled to take it, it was easily one of the hardest things I had to go through.
I can’t imagine what it would have been like going through that process alone! But having Tyler’s support and encouragement every step of the way, we learned so much about each other through the process and he was able to help me come out strong on the other side. These growing moments for us together are invaluable.
5. Marriage Is An Amazing Opportunity to Become a Better Version of Yourself
Just last night I had started a conversation with my husband about a frustration I was having. I didn’t mean to. It just kind of.. happened. Tired thoughts became tired words that became almost a tired argument. And we all know tired arguments lead to tired, but permanent, words.
But before it escalated to much, I thought for a second. I looked at him and admitted it.
“I’m being selfish, I’m sorry.”
To which he responded, “what do you mean you’re being selfish?” and I had to halt in my tracks and think about what may or may not happen next. I could use this is as a passive way to drive my tired point home. It would have come out something like, “well, I do x, y, z..and also a, b, c, d and l, m, n, o, p.. so I guess I’m being selfish because I don’t also want to deal with what I’m frustrated about because YOU this, YOU that, blah, blah, blah.” Selfish.
So, instead, I looked at him and said, “it was selfish of me to bring this up right before we went to bed and we are both tired. I’m sorry. I would love to talk about this in the morning when we both are feeling a bit better.” And so we did, and this morning was an easy-breezy conversation that resolved the issue right away.
Marriage has been an amazing platform for things like this to unravel. I sometimes pass the test, and more often don’t – but it is an amazing opportunity to experience grace, give grace, and learn more about yourself, your motives, and your priorities in the process. Marriage is a covenant to love and honor, to serve, and to choose to be second. And that, my friend, is a very, very, very refining, but fruitful, equation.
I hope that if you are in the throes of being afraid of marrying young or if you are wondering if you made the right decision in retrospect, that you would find courage in these 5 truths and find freedom in knowing your story is your own. You don’t have to fit a perfect mold to validate your marriage! There is SO much good that can come from marrying young if you feel a peace that this is what God is leading you to.