Jump to content

Menu

Early Marriage


TexasProud
 Share

Recommended Posts

Ok, is anyone else seeing this in the homeschool community? I am wondering if it is pandemic related. My daughter left homeschooling to go to a private Christian school. Only 8 in her high school graduating class. There were probably 8 girls or so in her homeschooling class of 2020. All of the girls in both types of classes are engaged. Several I know that graduated last year are getting married. These kids are 18 and 19.  This feels really, really young.  Do you think it is sort of like WWII and the world feels so unstable that they just want not to waste time?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, regentrude said:

No, this has nothing to do with the pandemic. This has long been the cultural norm in some circles. 

But it didn't happen in my boys' graduating classes. I have not seen this before. Their older brothers and sisters are not married.

Edited by TexasProud
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, Seasider too said:

Agree. There are many pre-pandemic threads that touch on this topic. I’ve homeschooled in several different states over the years and this was a common consistency in all our homeschool groups. Not all married young, but the ones we know who married young were typically home schooled kids.  

I guess it just wasn't when my boys were being homeschooled.  And as I mentioned, it happened in her Christian school as well. This wasn't a typical feature of previous graduates.  Maybe with all of the anti-vax/Trump, it is just getting more radical?  None of these people are my friends, nor could I be friends with them. They were not this radical when my sons were being homeschooled.  We had our differences, but...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was married at 18. It didn't seem early. My mum was married at 16, that seemed like an early marriage .  It was very common up until a few years ago. Once people just started shacking up together the point of getting married seems to have been lost. now strangely people seem to get married after many years of living with someone- around the time they have kids.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It’s always been the norm in homeschool groups I have been in. More prevalent in the smaller town/more conservative area than in the bigger city but still a thing.

My oldest came up during the “I kissed dating goodbye” craze and the courtship model took hold. I still see it as my 18 yo received two wedding invitations from peers this past summer.

I can’t say that most are getting married at 18 but it does seem to be the goal. There is a seriousness put on all the 16 yo-18 yo that the relationships are on track for marriage. More often than not it falls apart but it is a disappointment to everyone involved because the early marriage is the goal. By 20-21 the girls seem to be getting really anxious 🙁

It seems as if the goal is to make sure there are no premarital relations and/or making sure the young people are only with one person. Early marriage is seen as key to that. 
 

When my oldest was a young teen one of the moms told me she was worried about him because he was so flirtatious. I made some comment with an eye roll that is how he had been since he was a toddler. She told me she would pray for early marriage for him. This was ten years ago. (He still isn’t married)
 

So it is not new. 

  • Haha 3
  • Confused 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

40 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

I guess it just wasn't when my boys were being homeschooled.  And as I mentioned, it happened in her Christian school as well. This wasn't a typical feature of previous graduates.  Maybe with all of the anti-vax/Trump, it is just getting more radical?  None of these people are my friends, nor could I be friends with them. They were not this radical when my sons were being homeschooled.  We had our differences, but...

N/m

Edited by frogger
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It may have something to do with the pandemic. Or it might just be a social contagion like divorce. I’m sure if they were honest their main conscience motivation is sex, not pandemic fears.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If it was not the norm in these families before, it could be a desire to have something to look forward to, and some security (perceived security more than actual). I mean, how many people had a pandemic pet, just to have something happy to think about? I could see a wedding in that category. 

Also, in such a tiny group, once one does it, it is easy for it to become a trend. 

  • Like 12
Link to comment
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, Melissa in Australia said:

I was married at 18. It didn't seem early. My mum was married at 16, that seemed like an early marriage .  It was very common up until a few years ago

What do you consider “a few years ago”, though?  It was definitely not common where I’m from. My parents were 21 when they got married in the early 70s, and considered toward the young side of normal. I was 23 in 2000, and absolutely considered young.  I know of one classmate who got married sooner, and one or two around the same time as me. 

I don’t know about my grandparents’ and great-grandparents’ social circles, but almost all of them were 24 and up, and even into their early 30s.

Before that, lots more in the 18-20 range, of course.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It’s forever been the norm in my homeschooling circles. Back in the 90s my parents were so annoyed by the early marriage pressure that they pulled us out of all homeschool related activities. I had a “boyfriend” when we were 15-16 and his parents were heavily pressuring us to get married at 17.  Um….no. My parents were horrified. 
My cousins all got caught up in this conservative Christian movement and were all married by 19.  20 years later and all are now divorced. 

  • Sad 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Carrie12345 said:

What do you consider “a few years ago”, though?  It was definitely not common where I’m from. My parents were 21 when they got married in the early 70s, and considered toward the young side of normal. I was 23 in 2000, and absolutely considered young.  I know of one classmate who got married sooner, and one or two around the same time as me. 

I don’t know about my grandparents’ and great-grandparents’ social circles, but almost all of them were 24 and up, and even into their early 30s.

Before that, lots more in the 18-20 range, of course.

25 + years ago

 very very common

 living with someone not married was very uncommon

 My mum got married in the early 70s at age 16. Here in Australia an unmarried women who had a child in the late 60s and very early 70s would often  have the child  forcibly removed and put up for adoption. people got married lickity split

 before the 60s, before readily available contraception, people were considered old maids if they weren't married before 23

delaying  marriage until you are well into the thirties is a relatively  new thing 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Melissa in Australia said:

what does fundy mean? I looked it up and the definition is

 [ fuhn-dee ] SHOW IPA. / ˈfʌn di / PHONETIC RESPELLING. noun. Bay of, an inlet of the Atlantic in SE Canada, between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, having swift tidal currents.

In that context it’s the name of a body of water in Canada.

In this context 

5 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

It’s a fundy thing. 

It is short for religious fundamentalism.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The other reason is practical. If you get married, your parents'income no longer counts against you on the FAFSA. I have known several teens who have married in the 18-20 range so that they would get financial aid and not have to take out loans because their parents couldn't afford the EFC. This was pretty common among the community college students, who qualified for free tuition at the CC, but couldn't get enough scholarships and financial aid to finish those last two years. It wasn't that they weren't also motivated by other (ahem) considerations, but money ultimately was the motivator for the marriage license vs just living together. In many ways, it reminded me of adults with disabilities who don't get married because they cannot afford to lose their SSDI and Medicaid. 

  • Like 4
  • Sad 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Around here it is mostly only “Church of Christ” folks who get married young or it’s kids who seem like they want to escape home and grow up as fast as possible—definitely not a religious thing.  So it’s one end of the spectrum or the other.   I don’t notice it at all among any organized groups except Church or Christ, so I wouldn’t say it’s a religious thing.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

It’s a fundy thing. 

I agree that it's a fundy thing more than a homeschool thing.  But even then, I didn't see many right-out-of-high school marriages!  That does seem very young.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, TexasProud said:

Only 8 in her high school graduating class. There were probably 8 girls or so in her homeschooling class of 2020. All of the girls in both types of classes are engaged.

Just curious -- are all the boys in these classes also engaged?  How old are the engaged girls' fiancees?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

re "Fundy"

1 hour ago, Melissa in Australia said:

what does fundy mean? I looked it up and the definition is

 [ fuhn-dee ] SHOW IPA. / ˈfʌn di / PHONETIC RESPELLING. noun. Bay of, an inlet of the Atlantic in SE Canada, between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, having swift tidal currents.

pp have already answered the meaning in context, but as a PSA I'd just like to pitch a visit, if ever you're able, to the Bay of Fundy, which is absolutely beautiful, has the highest rise-fall tide changes in the Northeast (~14 feet), and truly breathtaking sea kayak opportunities.

 

walking-ocean-floor-300x200.jpg.56ba42b67c0c3cc72a53c7e7944abff3.jpg

 

  • Like 7
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, probably is a fundy thing, I guess. I was always the odd duck. My church is all public school. I was the only homeschooler. IN fact, when we started homeschooling, everyone was afraid our family would go to the homeschooling church in town. They were too conservative for my taste. So we went to the only homeschooling group in the next town. There were enough people that were old earth/not as conservative, mostly kids whose parents were profs at the local Christian university, but yeah I ran into the don't really school crowd some. I was known as an ultra hard homeschooler and the one everyone came to for advice if they wanted their kids to go to college. Most of them went to the same 2 or 3 churches.  So my kids struggled with having friends as the people they went to church with they didn't go to school with.  We were too liberal for one group and too conservative for the other gorup.

 When youngest went to a Christian high school, I lost track of the homeschool group.  Only at the beginning of the pandemic when I was cleaning out stuff and went on there to see if I could get rid of it, did I get on the Facebook group and oh, my goodness. Q theories, vaccine is mark of the devil, I tried to make a case, but was pounced upon and left the group and unfriended everyone. My daughter still follows the girls her age on Facebook and that is how she knows they are all engaged. But they were never her close friends.  Her friends at college are also getting engaged, but most of them are entering their senior year, so that makes more sense.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, PaxEtLux said:

Just curious -- are all the boys in these classes also engaged?  How old are the engaged girls' fiancees?

I don't know. I will ask my daughter, but yeah, the two or three that I know are engaged to guys in the class or one year older.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, Selkie said:

I'm not seeing that at all where I live. Here, getting married at 22 or 23 is considered getting married young.

It's weird to think that I was married at 23 but it felt very old then!  I had already graduated from college, gotten a job, and was living on my own.  Now 23 seems so young, but it was pretty typical back then for my peers -- of all backgrounds.  (I was not homeschooled or raised in the fundy church.)  Now I see a lot of "kids" who are my older children's ages not getting married until late 20's/early 30's.  

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anytime after high school seems fine by me.  

That isn't what I did.   Married at 39 and child 11 months later at 40.  
The reason I waited so long wasn't because I thought I was too young but because I became anti-marriage when relationships would die because my boyfriend would propose with basically, "Well, I am ready to get married, and you're my girlfriend, so how about it?"    The relationship pretty much ended when I'd say, "No, hell no, what were thinking?"    I wanted to wait until I met someone that I could be HAPPILY married to until death-do-you-part.    So, I'd start relationships with "I don't want to get married"   

My parents eloped at 19 and that was fairly normal then.  Although, the funny thing is, Dad needed a parent signature and Mom didn't even though they were the same age.  Only thing that raised eyebrows was the eloping because the small-town gossips were certain mom was pregnant.  My grandparents were married and having kids before they were 20, and that was normal.  Lots of women over a certain age didn't graduate from high school because they married and then dropped out.   The concept of an "Mrs degree" assumes marrying someone you meet in college.   I don't remember the precise numbers, but I remember reading an article on when women got married during the 50's.   A decent number were married when they turned 20 and a shocking number before they were 17.  

I wish, though, that I'd thought of the "getting married in college to become an adult" thing.   I worked 30 hours a week during college, and took on sweat-shop jobs in the summer and I still went without food some days.  

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

I think people who are striving to remain chaste before marriage should not date until they are old enough to actually marry.

Well, technically, these kids are old enough to marry, yes? So this statement might need a little more finessing. I mean, 18 is the legal marriage age (without need for parental consent) in most states in the US. 

And based on that thread here the other day about trying out partners sexually pre-marriage, the goal of chastity-until-marriage certainly isn't held by many parents of this board for their children.

Anyway, I live in the rural farm area of flyover country. We do see some marriage right out of high school but most kids that stick around here just shack up and/or have kids. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is a cultural norm in dominion/recontructionist religious groups here for girls. They marry straight out of high school so they can beginning having babies immediately and do not seek to pursue higher education or job training. But the boys are expected to wait much longer, receive trades training, work in the family business, even go to college for certain approved vocations and only at a limited number of approved conservative Christian colleges. So they marry in their late 20's, early 30's and have some money with which to establish a home.

Locally, there had been a bit of a flap because a 33 year old guy courted a 15 year old girl who was married off to him when she turned 17 and her parents graduated her. She is now 26, had 6 children, and is pregnant with her 7th. Her body never gets a break, and though so young, she looks utterly worn out and way older than she actually is. This is celebrated as normal in their community of quiverfuls. Out breed the non Christians and in order to do that, take maximum advantage of starting out young but within the bounds of the law.

  • Confused 1
  • Sad 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 minutes ago, RootAnn said:

Well, technically, these kids are old enough to marry, yes? So this statement might need a little more finessing. I mean, 18 is the legal marriage age (without need for parental consent) in most states in the US. 

 

Legal age is 18 yes.  But the kids getting married at 18 are often dating by age 15 or 16.  And when I say wait until they are old enough I mean, capable of supporting one's self.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

47 minutes ago, Selkie said:

I'm not seeing that at all where I live. Here, getting married at 22 or 23 is considered getting married young.

Same.  I have an almost 21 year old son. We're urban and I've done teaching, tutoring, organizing groups over the years so I social media wise know a lot of homeschoolers.  Well, plenty of kids out of B&M schools too.  First young woman I know got married not long ago at 23-24, out of college and she seemed young to us.  My son is just no where near interested in marrying.  He is in college and is thinking about grad school.

I married at 29 over 20 years ago.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

18 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Legal age is 18 yes.  But the kids getting married at 18 are often dating by age 15 or 16.  And when I say wait until they are old enough I mean, capable of supporting one's self.  

Kids start "dating" at 11 or 12 around here. Or before. But my kids don't run in those circles.

So, your finessed statement would be, "I think people who are striving to remain chaste before marriage should not date until they are old enough to be capable of supporting one's self."

Interesting idea. Very unlikely to gain traction in large numbers due to human nature. But a noble thought.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, RootAnn said:

 

Kids start "dating" at 11 or 12 around here. Or before. But my kids don't run in those circles.

So, your finessed statement would be, "I think people who are striving to remain chaste before marriage should not date until they are old enough to be capable of supporting one's self."

Interesting idea. Very unlikely to gain traction in large numbers due to human nature. But a noble thought.

Well, as  mentioned upthread the % of people who strive to remain chaste is small.  So you think among those people not many are waiting to date until they are of legal age and can support themselves?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Well, as  mentioned upthread the % of people who strive to remain chaste is small.  So you think among those people not many are waiting to date until they are of legal age and can support themselves?

I cannot answer for everyone, only for us. I think dating is important to know what you like and what you don't like.  Heck, just to have a good time and not be serious. Thanks to Covid, my poor daughter has not gotten to do any of that. Really stinks.  My oldest is 26 and never been on a date and will not unless a girl asks him out. They scare him to death. Sigh.  My middle one has asked out two and he is 24. I wish he would have fun and ask more out, but it is his life.  I think dating in college is good. And yes, we wait until marriage for sex.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

I cannot answer for everyone, only for us. I think dating is important to know what you like and what you don't like.  Heck, just to have a good time and not be serious. Thanks to Covid, my poor daughter has not gotten to do any of that. Really stinks.  My oldest is 26 and never been on a date and will not unless a girl asks him out. They scare him to death. Sigh.  My middle one has asked out two and he is 24. I wish he would have fun and ask more out, but it is his life.  I think dating in college is good. And yes, we wait until marriage for sex.

 

I don't believe dating is required to learn what you do and don't like in people.  It seems much wiser to learn those things in groups of friends. I mean...for those who are striving to remain chaste.  😉

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

 

I don't believe dating is required to learn what you do and don't like in people.  It seems much wiser to learn those things in groups of friends. I mean...for those who are striving to remain chaste.  😉

Yeah, but there are things people do in private that they do not do in a group, some red flags you might not catch.  I know I act VERY different in groups than just with my husband. Very different.

As far as remaining chaste, no going into any bedrooms alone. I don't know, it just wasn't that hard. These are not overwhelming emotions you cannot control for pete's sake. You just set the boundaries. Do things in public or semi-public spaces. 

  • Like 9
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, TexasProud said:

Yeah, but there are things people do in private that they do not do in a group, some red flags you might not catch.  I know I act VERY different in groups than just with my husband. Very different.

As far as remaining chaste, no going into any bedrooms alone. I don't know, it just wasn't that hard. These are not overwhelming emotions you cannot control for pete's sake. You just set the boundaries. Do things in public or semi-public spaces. 

Right, I am not disagreeing that people need to get to know each other one on one.  But not at age 16 when they aren't ready for marriage.  And not for fun.  I mean, it IS fun, but that should not be the purpose of dating IMO.  YMMV.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

When we've lived in military towns, we saw a lot of young marriages among the enlisted folks. When not in military towns, it was very rare unless they were super religious.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know a number of homeschooled young adults who married at 18 or 19.  I know many more homeschooled young adults who were shocked at the idea of marrying so young, but who still thought their married friends were perfect for each other.  My current almost-18yo has an engaged friend who plans to marry a month after turning 18.  Most of dc's friends aren't really dating, though; they tend to hang out in large groups and sometimes one-on-one with opposite-sex friends, but mostly just as friends.  For now.  I'm interested to see how that may change over the next couple of years; I suspect as the boys start earning real incomes, they will also start wanting to date toward marriage.     

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Right, I am not disagreeing that people need to get to know each other one on one.  But not at age 16 when they aren't ready for marriage.  And not for fun.  I mean, it IS fun, but that should not be the purpose of dating IMO.  YMMV.

I would agree with that, but college is a completely different animal. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

I would agree with that, but college is a completely different animal. 

Well, yes most people in college are old enough and mature enough to get married.  Lots of people get married while in college.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Well, yes most people in college are old enough and mature enough to get married.  Lots of people get married while in college.

Yes,  so dating is required. I really don't want my children to marry the first person they date. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, QueenCat said:

When we've lived in military towns, we saw a lot of young marriages among the enlisted folks. When not in military towns, it was very rare unless they were super religious.

There's a strong financial incentive for junior enlisted to marry and receive their Basic Allowance for Housing. Otherwise, they usually have to wait until they are an E5 (which takes about 3-6 years depending on their educational background and how fast their job advances). Spouses also qualify for Tricare.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

Yes,  so dating is required. I really don't want my children to marry the first person they date. 

Yeah, I don't think you are understanding what I am saying.  No where, at no time have I suggested anyone has to marry the first person they date.  I was saying that, to me, it seems better to not date until you are at a point in your life when you say to yourself, 'If I find a suitable person, I would like to get married.'  

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Yeah, I don't think you are understanding what I am saying.  No where, at no time have I suggested anyone has to marry the first person they date.  I was saying that, to me, it seems better to not date until you are at a point in your life when you say to yourself, 'If I find a suitable person, I would like to get married.'  

Ok, that I can agree with.  That is not what your original statement sounded like.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Scarlett said:

I think people who are striving to remain chaste before marriage should not date until they are old enough to actually marry.

 

22 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

Ok, that I can agree with.  That is not what your original statement sounded like.

Really?  What did it sound like?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Melissa in Australia said:

I was married at 18. It didn't seem early. My mum was married at 16, that seemed like an early marriage .  It was very common up until a few years ago. Once people just started shacking up together the point of getting married seems to have been lost. now strangely people seem to get married after many years of living with someone- around the time they have kids.

This is what I’ve been seeing for years now. Most don’t marry young but they are choosing to live together at the same “too young for marriage” ages.  So I don’t really understand the hoopla over “young” marriages. Most are living together and not deciding to get married until they have decided they want to get pregnant.

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...