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    Married at 22: The Pros and Cons of Being Married Young

    I got married at the tender age of 22. While most women at that age have just graduated from college and are figuring out life in the “real world,” I quickly had to transition from college graduate to wife in a matter of three months. I had no tools or books or friends my age at the time to truly prepare me for this new season I was entering. It just happened. And in a blink of an eye, we are now approaching our fifth anniversary this year. Whoa.

    It’s a pretty common conversation piece, especially working at a Christian university. When people find out I’m married, most of the time our conversations look like this:

    “What?! You’re married?! You’re so young!”

    “Why did you rush into it?”

    “Really?”

    “You’re so young! There’s a lot of things you can still do.”

    And my favorite:

    “Did you get pregnant before you got married?”

    I get it. It’s unusual these days to hear about people getting married very young. But within the Christian circle, there seems to be more talk and pressure to “find The One” and get the “ring by spring” before time runs out (which apparently seems to be before you turn 25 nowadays).

    From my point of view and conversations I’ve had with married and single friends, I’ve weighed the pros and cons of marriage.

     

    Pros:

    • You’re married! It’s hard to remember what life was like before marrying my husband. From the moment I wake up to the moment I go to bed, he is the first and last person I see every night. In times of trials and joys, he is always the first person I go to and confide in, to help me process, and to care about and love me.
    • You get to live life with your best friend. One of my favorite things to do is hang out with my husband in our home. Every day. It doesn’t sound exciting for most people, but it’s definitely something I look forward to every day because I can.

     

    Cons:

    • Life (dramatically) changes. It happens. And it’s a good change. Becoming a wife isn’t easy, and most of the time you learn as you go, from mistakes to achievements. This is where grace comes into play and is well needed for both spouses.
    • Most of your friends are still single. This is not really a negative thing. However, you begin to see a difference in the weight of your conversations and in how long you hang out with them, and you realize that you can’t do everything that your friends do. As a married person, you learn to create healthy boundaries with your friends and husband, and learning to balance both can be challenging.

     

    One of the best decisions I ever made was marrying my best friend at 22…and I’ve never regretted the decision since. This is what God wanted for me…for us. Never did I dream of getting married right after college. It wasn’t something that people pressured me to do nor did I feel pressure to get married. I was fine with my singleness in college; I even made plans after I graduated that involved my singleness (traveling, becoming a missionary in Africa, Youth With a Mission, etc.).

    God knew that individually we were capable of doing His ministry. But God wanted us to be together and He needed us to be together in His purpose, in His timing. Being married has taught me to grow stronger in my faith, stronger in myself.

    There is no wrong or right way to go about marriage. Each person needs to make their own decision and should never have to feel pressure to get married right away. God made us individually and has designed a unique purpose for everyone. All things will happen in His timing and His timing alone.

     

    Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:14)

     

    Christine Stephens
    In the midst of a busy life, Christine tries to squeeze in time finding new recipes to cook from Pinterest, writes about life’s meanderings at Delightful Findings, balances work life and mama life, and sips a warm, soy vanilla chai next to her husband.

    14 COMMENTS

        • My parents got married right before they turned 22. They both turned 22 within 2 months after their wedding but they waited to get married until after they had both graduated from college. I don’t think that is too young. They had been dating for 3 years and were engaged for another year. I have a friend getting married in a month and she’s 19. For some couples, that might be really young but for them, I don’t think it is. They are both mature and responsible, and I am super excited for her.

      • Ahhhhhhhhhh! I’m going to sound awful saying this, but if one goes into a marriage for reasons greater than love (obligation of whatever nature), and see it for what it is — a lifelong job — you’ll have a successful marriage no matter your age.
        Please don’t skewer me! It’s proven that societies with arranged marriages have a SIGNIFICANTLY lower divorce rate (like 5-10% TOTAL), than western cultures where love is the impetuous.
        Just a thought.
        I *love* love and love my family, but there are days that I’m reminded (rudely sometimes) that holding that emotion is work. Lifelong love is not emotional – it’s intentional.

    1. What if the only thing u were told; was, “don’t rush into it, wait until your at least 25. U don’t know who u are until about that age”. I’ve been dating my bf for 2 years now….and we’re in a interesting relationship. It’s at the point that we’re in it to get married or not at all. My mom and sisters caution me to not move that direction yet….and I feel there’s alot of fear behind their advice.

    2. Thanks for this post. My bf and I have started planning our future together, but aren’t quite ready to get engaged. We are kinda being pressured by grandparents on both sides to get married soon, while my parents would be content if we waited till we were in our late 20s. So we’re kinda trying to find a good timeline for us that takes into account both family expectations and our own places in life right now.
      The last point here gave me something to think about just in general.

    3. My husband and I were married when we were 18. We have now been married for almost 11 years and I wouldn’t change anything! I was however, 9 months pregnant when we got married…so we did everything a bit backwards. But we have beaten the odds and proved many people wrong. I love him more today than I did the day we met! He is truly my soulmate. Loved this article!

    4. I got married to my husband almost 3 weeks after I turned 18. He was 20 at the time. I don’t regret it at all. And who are others to say how old the “right” age is to get married. And no, I don’t have kids. I’m getting my degree and establishing my job first before we think about that. Go you for following your heart and wanting to grow up with your best friend!

    5. One of the best pros I’ve heard for marrying young is that you don’t have as many personal traditions and habits formed young that then have to be changed as you build a new life with your husband. One of my cousins is getting married soon at age 30, while another cousin is not yet 18 but engaged to be married next February. At 30, my cousin had learned over the past 10 years How to be a single person and has built up her own walls of life, so to speak, that are strong and tall, and that are much harder to be taken down and rebuilt as a joint life wall with her future husband. Meanwhile, my 17 year old cousin also has those life walls but they are not nearly so solid since he still lives at home and has not had to create his own single life over the past 10 years like my 30 year old cousin.

    6. I have some friends that have gotten married at 18 years old. Personally I don’t want to get married that young, but they are very happy for the decisions they took and I respect that. As long as you do things the right way and have a Christ centered relationship and stay pure, I have nothing against getting married at a very young age. What is so sad about nowadays is when people see a very youngly married couple and think of it as a pached up marriage because the girl got pregnant, when the couple just got married because they were in love

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