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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Marrying Young

This is another topic that is near and dear to my heart, like education and vocation (see my last post).  I met my husband at the age of eighteen, and we were married just before I turned twenty.  He was almost twenty-one.

Our plan to marry young was met with mixed reactions from our family, friends and acquaintances.  Most of the people closest to us were very supportive and encouraging.  Some of our family compared us to older, "more settled" adults they saw marrying--people in their thirties, out of college, holding steady and well-paying jobs, owning their own house.  (Unfortunately, a few couples like that were living together before they were married.)

Joshua and I believe that following God's directives for our lives is always the best idea, and that includes marriage and relationships.  We wanted to remain virgin till marriage, which we did, by the grace of God.  We did not intend on living together before marriage, which we did not.  We wanted to live our lives in a way that would best honor and glorify God, and we believe that they best way to do that was to marry sooner rather than later.

It was difficult enough for us to wait as long as we did.  We both strongly desired to be married for a variety of reasons.  We both feel that we can serve God better together than apart.  And we wanted to honor him with our bodies.  For those and other reasons, we chose to marry young.

Now, there are several good reasons why we should have waited to get married until we were older.
-We would have been out of college and (at least mostly) done with our education
-We would have had careers, steady jobs, and a more substantial income than we do now
-We would have been free to explore other activities and opportunities that college offers
-We could have enjoyed the benefits of remaining our parents' dependents for longer
-We could have become more mature and sure of ourselves

But there are many good reasons why we did marry when we did.
-We did not want to risk falling into temptation
-We can "finish growing up" together instead of separately
-We can begin learning how to be a good spouse now instead of later, when we might have learned bad habits
-We can enjoy the comfort and companionship of marriage now instead of desperately desiring it for any longer
-We can support each other in our faith and our walk with God much better
-We can start early in being independent and self-sufficient
-We can enjoy having relatively few responsibilities while we are still in college, and yet have the benefits of being married and independent
-We are learning responsibility, resourcefulness, and selflessness much better than if we were single
-We are saving money by living together off-campus and having jobs to support ourselves
-We have more years to enjoy as a married couple before children come to bless us
-Most importantly, we can serve God better together and seek to honor him in new ways that have become available to us

I could go on!  I will never regret the decision we made.  Our parents supported us completely, and we felt totally at peace with the decision we made.  That was enough to make me sure that our choice was the right one.

I have several friends and acquaintances who also chose to marry before they finished school.  I am so proud of them.  But please don't take this post to mean that I think it's wrong to wait to get married!  Every couple has to make the choice for themselves, and whether it's right or wrong depends on the couple.  I just believe that it's often beneficial to marry young, rather than waiting to finish college/grad school/whatever.

And I wanted to write this in order to be an encouragement to others, and to explain why we chose the life we did.
I wouldn't have life any other way.

{8/10/12 edit: Linking to the Perspectives on Life and Love Carnival at Modern Mrs. Darcy!}

{Linking up with all these fantastic blogs!}

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13 comments:

  1. Smiling at your lists and understanding, dear one. I, too, was married at the ripe old age of 19. :) While I don't suggest that every couple pursue that, God clearly led and directed us that way. I've never, not once, regretted it. We grew up together, and though there were difficult years in learning to love selflessly, humble ourselves, and forgive, God used that young, immature love to have His way in both of us. You guys are such an encouragement to me, Jaimie!

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  2. Thanks for sharing Jaimie! =)
    What a wonderful story you guys have =) We did wait to marry, as we were both living in seperate countries but still married young according to the world's standards at 22 & 23. Waiting was harder & I'm proud of you guys for wanting to honor the Lord and marry instead of risking the temptation. =)
    So glad to have found your blog today =)
    totally following your updates =)

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  3. Both of you have brought tears of gratitude to my eyes. Thank you!
    Nikki~ Yes, I absolutely agree that it's not for everyone. But I hope that Joshua and I do the same things you and Jon did and that God teaches us in similar ways. I can't believe we have the privilege of being an encouragement to YOU--but thank you. That's an honor. :)

    L, dear, your blog has been an encouragement to me already! I'm looking forward to getting to "know" you better. And thank you for your sweet comments. :) Living in separate countries would make waiting easier in some ways but harder in others, I think. Good for you guys!

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  4. Great article! My sweet hubby and I married when I was 20 and he was 21. We will celebrate our 13th wedding anniversary this month! Growing up together has been so much fun. That doesn't mean it was always easy - we've had our share of difficulties. But, if we had to do it over, we would do it the exact same way.

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  5. I am a huge supporter of marrying young! It's the best way to stay pure. Good for you!

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  6. Yes,Yes,Yes.....My husband and I (19&20) are now closing in on our first year of marriage.We live traditional and biblical lives(I stay home,he has the job) this has perplexed so many of our friend and family...it is SO NICE to find more people like this...I say yes,to all the above!

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  7. I married young, too--I was 21, my husband was 22. I NEVER intended to get married so young, I had always had my late 20s in mind. But....I never thought I'd meet a guy as great as my husband so early either!

    We'll celebrate 12 years this summer, which is not forever, for sure, but it's plenty long enough to say that we made a great decision to go ahead and tie the knot! I'm so glad that we've gotten to "grow up" together during our formative 20s. Because when you meet the one you want to spend the rest of your life with, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible!

    Congrats to you and your man :) Here's to many years together!

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  8. Hi Jaimie,

    SO glad that I found your blog today! I was linking up over at Women Living Well and I just happened to see your link up and came over to see what you had to say. So glad that I did!

    My husband and I were married when I was 19 and he was 21. We got married in May right after he finished his junior year of college and I had just finished my Sophmore year. Now we have been married for 2 1/2 years, we are both graduated from college and SO excited for our next steps of buying a house and (Lord willing) having children soon. We were met with so much opposition. Like you said, our close family and friends were so supportive and saw that we were "mature" enough to get married and that was indeed God's will for us. But so many in the culture and people we still meet today think we are CRAZY! My husband just turned 24 (which is not that young to me to be married) and we meet people all the time who think he's too young-go figure!

    It was so nice to "meet" you today and read this post. We think exactly the same way. If we are trying to live by God's standards of purity before marriage, and if we love each other and know that he is the "one", then why should not being done with college matter? I loved your lists on here.

    I agree, not everyone is meant to marry young and I don't think that everyone "has" to get married young. But in our culture today it is seen as such as ugly bad thing to get married young (And I'm sure I will experience this again if I am a mom in my twenties ;)). I am so passionate about the joys and strengths of getting married young that I actually just launched a new blog this week called Young Wife's Guide to Gospel Centered Homemaking and I'm so excited about it.

    Anyway (I feel like I'm rambling now) I am so glad to have found your site, I am off to go follow and look around some more!

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  9. Thank you all so much for your encouraging and edifying comments!! It's wonderful to find out how many other people have made choices similar to ours. :) So thankful for all of you and your sweet words!

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  10. Jaime, this has been such a blessing to me. The Lord leads in different ways, but I would rather our young people go through some hardship than become materialistic and gain bad habits to bring into their marriages. Also, we know so many who have had many relationships b/c they don't want to get married until after college. It has given them so much baggage. Very good post!

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  11. Thank you so very much, Jacqueline! :)

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  12. We were 19 and 20 best decision we ever made after almost 18 years still thankful!! You are an amazing young lady!! Just like the bible says!! Very God honoring!

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  13. Thank you, Melissa!! That means a lot. :)

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