Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The ideal age for marriage


Sweeping generalizations are served up by Guy Kawasaki in "If I Were 22: Don't Get Married Too Soon (And Always Make Your Boss Look Good)" Let's just deal with the marriage part. Here's what it says:
Don't get married too soon. I got married when I was thirty-two. That's about the right age. Until you're about that age, you may not know who you are. You also may not know who you're marrying. I don't know anyone who got married too late. I know many people who got married too young.
There really is not a one-age-fits-all for marriage, and as his justification for the age is knowing who you are, well, some of us reach that at 19, while others may not do do even at 35. It all depends on the individual.   So settling on a magic number for marriage is absurd, and it as absurd to make it 32 as it is to make it 20. If you click over to the article, you'll find that quite a number of the comments make a similar point, and many report having married in their early 20s and being very happy to have found their life partners that early.


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2 comments:

Eliezer Eisenberg said...

I was surprised to read the following paragraphs in the WSJ of 3/30/14:

The age of marriage for college graduates has been increasing for decades, and this cultural shift has been a good thing. Many 22-year-olds are saved from bad marriages because they go into relationships at that age assuming that marriage is still out of the question.

But should you assume that marriage is still out of the question when you're 25? Twenty-seven? I'm not suggesting that you decide ahead of time that you will get married in your 20s. You've got to wait until the right person comes along. I'm just pointing out that you shouldn't exclude the possibility. If you wait until your 30s, your marriage is likely to be a merger. If you get married in your 20s, it is likely to be a startup.

Merger marriages are what you tend to see on the weddings pages of the Sunday New York Times: highly educated couples in their 30s, both people well on their way to success. Lots of things can be said in favor of merger marriages. The bride and groom may be more mature, less likely to outgrow each other or to feel impelled, 10 years into the marriage, to make up for their lost youth.

But let me put in a word for startup marriages, in which the success of the partners isn't yet assured. The groom with his new architecture degree is still designing stairwells, and the bride is starting her third year of medical school. Their income doesn't leave them impoverished, but they have to watch every penny.

Ariella Brown said...

Sorry for the delay on posting your comment, Eliezer Eisenberg. I was not as diligent as I should have been in checking for what's awaiting moderation. Agreed. In general, I don't believe in one-size-fits-all.