These days, more and more young people are holding back on marriage. In 2015, the median age of Australian men and women getting married was 31.8 years and 29.8 years respectively. The age of people who are getting married the first time has increased by three years since 1995. Anecdotally, people seem to marry later due to the pursuit of career, education, or financial stability. Many also state the desire to settle down later in life and experience the freedom of single life.
Because of this, people who marry young are seen as an anomaly for their choice. But how does it actually feel to tie the knot at a young age? Here are a few stories from them.
“I am still shocked that we’re married. Sometimes I’ll look at him and I’ll be like, “Oh my God. You’re my husband!” I couldn’t say the word husband for the first two weeks. It was odd. Of course I wanted to marry him, but the transition overall was really tough for me. I’m very close with my family. I never went off to college. I never had roommates. I never did the dorm. I didn’t do any of that. Colton is the first person I moved out with, so that was really hard.”
“There wasn’t a use in waiting. Once I met the person I knew I wanted to be with for the rest of my life, to us, we didn’t see the point in waiting any longer. I did what made sense and felt was the right decision for me and my life, and that was what mattered… I will celebrate my 10th anniversary before my 30th birthday. That is my reality and it even sounds crazy to me. However, I think we are so fortunate to have the chance we do.”
“What I did not realize was how thoroughly marriage would jump-start our independence. On paper, our unmarried peers looked more carefree. But many of them also relied on their parents to supplement their income, drove home for long weekends and holidays, or stayed on their parents’ health insurance and cellphone plans (even though they had decent jobs!) … We loved our parents and siblings, but marriage made us realize that we were now a separate family unit.”
“My husband is 30 years old, but I remember him at 18. I remember him living with roommates and delivering pizzas, fresh out of high school. We’ve been together through college classes, internships, big moves, small moves, graying hair, changing bodies. We’ve watched each other launch careers and tackle goals that we once dreamed up on thrift-store furniture, in what feels like former lives.
We grew up together, but also because of each other. I’m proud of the man he’s grown into, and I know he feels the same pride and respect toward me. We’ve come a long way, and it’s nice to have someone witness the progress.”