When I got married, I was a month shy of 23. It didn't come as a surprise to my environment, we had been together for three years and were a very solid couple, and quite to my surprise, we didn't get any negative comments.
We had wanted to get married the next year, as I was still studying back then, but since my husband landed the job abroad and marriage would make the paperwork a lot easier, we decided to go ahead with it anyway, since we'd planned on marrying anyway.
|Image: Tammra McCauley|
With our way of life, and because I also actively seek them out, I've been meeting a lot of new people... And lately, I do get some funny faces when I say at what age I got married. I get some "that's pretty young"-remarks.
Now I forgive those people, because they don't know me and they sure didn't know me back then. I don't know them either, but probably at 22 they themselves weren't very mature. That happens. For some people maturity takes a while longer then for others.
At 22 I had had my fun, I had been president of a student's union (probably comparable to a sorority, not quite sure, but it's mixed sexes and mostly oriented towards drinking). I had had my share of boyfriends. And I had known for a while that I wanted a big family.
My husband was the one. And even if he wasn't, he was the one back then.
Where do we get the idea that we should only get married at around 30, when your fertility is well beyond its peak. When your physical maturity has been reached for over a decade. When you've been an active citizen for years?
Is it really all about schooling keeping us small and childlike?
Have we all come to believe in the myth that life ends when you get married? That you become obsolete when you have kids?
When I ask those people why 22 would be young to get married, why 25 would be young to have kids, they tend to answer that you can't do stuff?
What stuff I ask?
I do plenty more stuff then most single people I know, with a husband and a kid.
I have lived in three (soon four) different countries since I've been married. I have visited several others. I do pretty much everything my heart desires.
So what exactly is it I am missing out on?
Drinking? I've done more then my share of that at university and think I can go a lifetime simply to detox.
Fucking around? Would that really be it? I don't really see how I am missing out here. And if I were, there are ways to come to an arrangement within a marriage that makes it possible to explore new territories.
General outing? Yes, there are only few of them, I think since my daughter was born we can count our outings on our two hands... but I don't feel like I'm missing out.
So here we are again. It is all about choice. These are my choices... Simply because they don't relate to yours doesn't make them weird or crazy. Before you judge someone about the choices they made, put yourself in their shoes. Live their life, feel their feelings... Maybe in the end, you are the strange one.