The USA Today had an article this last week asking the question “Sooner vs. later: Is there an ideal age for first marriage?”
This article was sparked by the recent findings by the Census that age at first marriage is now the highest it has ever been in the United States (almost 26 for women and almost 28 for men).
The reasons cited by “real couples” to delay marriage ranged from careers, “being ready”, and financial stability.
Experts are saying that the “solution” to more stable and secure marriage relationships is education (the higher the better), age (higher but not too high), and personal economy (mid to high is ideal).
I think one of the primary (and missing) reasons to people delaying marriage results directly from the impact of being raised in a divorce culture that has been hostile towards the marriage institution. This has resulted in an insecurity surrounding getting married that transcends education, finances, and age.
This generation of marrying couples is so scared of divorce that they are delaying marriage and choosing riskier relationship choices. In the end, they often experience the divorce-like pain of breaking up with a live-in or being dumped by an unmarried lover.
One of the best steps to overcome the insecurities and fears of divorce is for couples to participate in marriage preparation … even before the engagement. In fact, singles can learn a lot from a relationship education program in how to become whole in themselves, and then how to find a healthy mate.
During my pre-interview with couples before they (or I) commit to premarital education, I ask the man and the woman what they’re number one fear or concern is. Almost every time, the answer is “fear of divorce”.
By the time we’ve gone through the six, eight or ten session of premarital using Before “I Do” (a shameless plug for my book) that fear is often alleviated. They have replaced fear with hope, anxiety with confidence, and luck with skills … regardless of education, income or age.
Posted at Ramblings of a Marriage Junkie (www.marriagejunkie.com) by K. Jason Krafsky, author of Before “I Do” (www.fullmarriageexperience.com) who is in all ways a Marriage Junkie.