July 10, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Despite the current statistics saying the age people get married keeps rising, and even that fewer young men ever want to get married, Brett and Kate McKay have outlined a compelling list of the surprising benefits of marrying young.
“Rather than proving the superiority of marrying young,” says Brett in an article published in The Art of Manliness blog, “my goal with this article is to simply provide some reassurance to the young gents out there who are in their early to mid-twenties, have already met the right person, and feel like they’re ready to get hitched, but are scared to pull the trigger because they’ve heard the constant drumbeat of ‘Marry young, and you’ll regret it!’”
“In truth,” Brett says, “you needn’t be afraid to take the plunge; as a study that analyzed marrying age and future happiness concluded: “most persons have little or nothing to gain in the way of marital success by deliberately postponing marriage beyond the mid twenties.”
Brett and Kate, who just celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary, got married when he was 22 and she was 24.
“I wouldn’t have had it any other way — it’s been an incredible ten years,” Brett says, but points out that “It’s become an article of faith in contemporary culture that you should put off marriage so you can focus on your education and career first.”
The result is that in 1960 the median age for first marriage was 23 for men and 20 for women; it’s now 29 and 27, respectively.
Researchers at the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia have said, “Culturally, young adults have increasingly come to see marriage as a ‘capstone’ rather than a ‘cornerstone’ — that is, something they do after they have all their other ducks in a row, rather than a foundation for launching into adulthood and parenthood.”
But counter to this trend, Brett notes that research has also found that “getting hitched between the ages of 22 and 25 seems to be the sweet spot. That’s just an average, of course, but the benefits outlined below mostly focus on “young” as being one’s early to mid-twenties.”
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The benefits of earlier marriage start with having less “baggage” from fewer past romantic relationships.
“When you marry young, you and your wife have less exes, old flames, comparisons, and retroactive jealousy of each other’s past relationships to deal with. You can start life together with more of the guileless freshness that lends itself to unabashed and lasting romance,” Brett says.
This goes hand-in-hand with marrying someone with whom you're highly compatible, not only because “the longer you wait to get married, the more ideal potential partners get taken off the market,” but because couples who get married in their 20s often meet in college “when you’re surrounded by tons of people who are of similar age and background and have similar interests. It’s easier to find someone who’s the yin to your yang in the classes, clubs, and extracurriculars you’re interested in, than it is to sort, or swipe, through a random assortment of women online.”
Numerous studies have shown that the longer childbearing is delayed the more difficult it becomes for women to achieve pregnancy and the higher the risks become for everything from low birth weight to genetic problems.
Brett says starting a family early has major benefits.
“Besides being easier to conceive when you and your wife are younger, it’s also just plain easier to raise your resulting progeny. Before I had kids, people always told me how tiring they could be, but I didn’t really believe them — I figured I was fit and would be the exception to the rule! But I’ll be darned if babies and toddlers are not as exhausting as all get out.”
“Consequently, I’m glad I started having kids in my 20s when I had a little more energy to spare. I’m also glad I won’t be in my 70s when I have grandkids!” he said.
He adds that while he knows “plenty of older guys who do great as older dads,” putting off marriage and children until the 30s can result in all the responsibilities of adjusting to married life, then children coming along, all on top of career advancement, adding up to a great amount of stress.
“Pursuing marriage, children, and career in successive phases, allows you to enjoy each season to the fullest,” Brett says.
Brett and Kate conclude that while “marrying age is one of those topics that gets people all riled up and wanting to spew profanities,” their assessment is that the most important factor in a happy marriage is not age, but choosing the right person.
“In other words,” Brett says, “once you’ve found the gal you can’t live without, you should absolutely feel confident in deciding to take on the rest of your lives side-by-side, and embarking with her on one of life’s greatest adventures.”