The younger, the better?

I've addressed so-called solutions to the shidduch crisis, that include bribing people to match younger men with older girls,  in the past  http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2011/11/new-nasi-shidduch-plan-throw-money-at.html Orthnonomics also address it:http://orthonomics.blogspot.com/2011/11/nasi-he-was-not-asked.html
Chaim Yudkowsky point out in  In Response to the Proposal Encouraging Our Young Men to Marry Very Young, it's not all positive.

I have suggested that instead of pushing for younger bachurim, they should not  push girls of 19 into shidduchim at all. That's not to say that that no one should marry young, but as
► Myth: Marrying young is a good thing, say age 19 or 20.
► Truth: Marrying young is great in the short-term, and gives parents a sense that they have “made it.” However, no couple that age can be financially independent. They need to be totally supported by parents and in-laws. Often, parents will dote on children and einiklach and meddle in the couple’s life. After all, they are entitled to manage their financial investment in any way they please. This not only leads to shalom bayis issues but also contradicts Chazal, who say that a person would rather have one measure of his own toil as opposed to a handout of nine.
In the long term, marrying young is often a disaster. Let’s say that all of the eligible 20-year-oldbachurim in yeshiva, most without a plan of how they will support their families, would get married. Such a solution to the shidduch crisis would exacerbate the already suppressed reality of the “parnassacrisis.” Financial distress in a marriage is the number one basis for divorce, according to many studies both in the frum world and secular worlds.

He also makes the point that at that age, they still have some growing to do in terms of finding themselves. Now, that does vary, as some 19 year-olds are more mature than some 22 year-olds, but still the one-age-fits-all criterion that pushes for a uniformly young age as the ideal one for shidduchim disallows for individual differences. Another thing that does is the shidduch system in general. While he critiques it as being a product of the 1980s rather than of the idealized Litvish world of pre-war Europe, it really has grown far worse. In the 80s and even in the 90s, no one was sending out shidduch resumes - something that people now consider essential to the system. I've discussed this at length in 
http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2010/08/stacking-deck-for-shidduchim.html
Also see http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2011/11/you-dont-marry-shidduch-resume.html
http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/09/responses-to-my-shidduch-resume-post-at.html
http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/09/shidduch-resumes-additional-comments.html
http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/10/shidduch-resume-poll.html

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Comments

Ariella Brown said…
Yitzchak, interesting, in the secular world marrying at 23 (for a woman) and 27 (for a man) is considered young. By that logic, I married very young, for I was not yet 23.
But in the RW world today, girls of 23 are considered already nearing the end of their shelf life. That's why Tzipporah Heller was able to say, "I don’t think any test in life is harder than being single at 28 or older." http://jewishmom.com/2013/07/11/dear-rebbetzin-heller-am-i-allowed-to-be-a-happy-older-single/
Yitzhak said…
Yes, I had the same thought, that the definitions of "young" in the respective contexts are quite different.

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