Thursday Link: Reasons to Marry Young?

This is an interesting article about why to get married young. It’s interesting because a couple of the reasons she lists for getting married sound like classic reasons for not getting married, and vice versa. Just for example:

On paper, our unmarried peers looked more carefree. But many of them also relied on their parents to supplement their income, drove home for long weekends and holidays, or stayed on their parents’ health insurance and cellphone plans (even though they had decent jobs!). I put David on my health insurance. We bought our own family cellphone plan and Netflix account. When we visited our parents once a year, we paid for the plane tickets and still did our own laundry. We loved our parents and siblings, but marriage made us realize that we were now a separate family unit.

Wait, I could have sworn that people who marry before they have an income rely on their parents for help. I have personally seen friends head off to their parents’ with the sum total of their household laundry. And in-laws are just one more family to make you feel guilty for not visiting–if anything, you now have twice as many demands on your holiday weekends.

The plane ticket mention makes me laugh. I once went out with a guy who said his parents decided against going to Israel for Pesach because they’d have to pay for too many tickets: their own, their unmarried law-school son’s, their two daughters’,  their two sons-in-law’s, not to mention a grandkid or two.

“Oh,” was my reaction, as I struggled to find something to say besides “Don’t any of your siblings pay for their own lives?” Marriage, at least to Orthodox Jews, doesn’t mean becoming a separate family unit.

That said, she does reiterate what they told me in high school (and at work):

Sometimes people delay marriage because they are searching for the perfect soul mate. But that view has it backward. Your spouse becomes your soul mate after you’ve made those vows to each other in front of God and the people who matter to you.

I am not sure that “I married young and love it” is exactly a compelling argument, but that could be because I’m one of those on-paper free siblings who are bribed back to visit my parents with the promise of a free washing machine.

HT Kansasian

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7 thoughts on “Thursday Link: Reasons to Marry Young?

  1. a few years ago, my mother mused that they’d need to upgrade laundry facilities because three households were using them- my brother was married and i wasn’t. we were both completely financially independent, though. and eventually we stopped bringing laundry to the parents’- tolls went up, time got scarce, and his wife didn’t want him boiling her clothes anymore…(we must be related, as i haven’t been allowed to touch laundry since my husband noticed that all my whites were grey)

  2. Yeah, I read this article and thought the same things. Very few Orthodox young couples pay for their own lives. And if the parents are not supporting them, they usually delay marriage. I get what she is saying about independence. I am very happy to be self-supporting. But you don’t have to be married for that.

  3. The author is probably one of the few who was mature at an age when the majority of the population is into beer pong.

    She is also religious, which does change matters a tad. In situations where most youthful marriages would suffer, she worked on hers to keep it fulfilling. Again, a rarity.

    But to echo Bad4, it doesn’t count as proof of success to say, “Hey, it worked for me.” Look, lady, I am happy for you. For reals. But last I checked, you are not the one representation for the entirety of female-kind.

    Her claims that one’s soulmate gets the title after marriage . . . again, one of the same smug people that found an actual nice guy that she didn’t see herself smothering in his sleep and suddenly he’s a retroactive soulmate. No, he was a soulmate before, too.

  4. Princess Lea, I think you are missing the point about the soul mate thing. Of course, you need to actually like the guy you are marrying. But there is a huge difference between refusing to marry a guy because the thought of actually being in one room with him every day makes you makes you nervous, and refusing to marry him because he doesn’t set your pulse racing, you don’t get butterflies when you see him and / or he does not perfectly match everything you dreamed of in your soul-mate. (Reverse the genders, and it works perfectly well.)

  5. Oy! I just reread my parenthesis and it says the opposite of what I meant. I meant, reverse the genders, and it’s the same issue.

  6. My sweet Observer, no one could ever accuse me of being a butterfly-seeking romantic.

    My point was more along the lines of those who accuse others of what is known as “pickiness” if they are single at a “certain” age (anytime past 22).

  7. This may be a reason to restructure society do kids who aren’t intellectuals can leave high school early to learn a trade. Would probably help with kids feeling like a failure in a system they don’t relate to.

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