12/08/2009

When is the Right Age to Marry?

I went out with Grandma today & she made a light threat that I marry before her time is up.

*knocks wood*

*true story*

That made me think: assuming she's still around for the next 10 yrs, I've less than that to find someone to spend the rest of my life with. In Malaysia, the minimum age of marriage is 18 with parental consent, 21 without parental consent. Having been in 2 serious relationships & both lasting for 4 months, I'd say I've little to no experience in having a deep relationship with another person. I'm 23 now, I remember being 18 & bragging that I'll have at least 10 boyfriends before I wed at 30. 

Pfft. How reality has changed that estimation for me; at best, I can hope to meet Mr. Right within the next 5 yrs & start preparing for life as Mrs. Right. It won't be easy finding Mr. Right especially when Mom has a list of requirements for me to follow; I swear my ears ring everytime she tells me that "your husband will be my son, so choose wisely!"
But when is the right age to marry? The average age of marriage has risen, especially in recent yrs. In 1991, men & women were getting married at 28.2 & 24.7 yrs. In 2000, this increased to 28.6 & 25.1 respectively. Yet when I hear that someone is getting married at my age, I feel that's too young. Some students at uni are married & having babies; I go "What about studies?" How can one be ready for marriage when he/she hasn't fully cemented his/her life emotionally & financially? 
Everyone has different priorities in life. I suppose when some people have finally found love, they don't waste time getting married. A few general pointers are in order:

1. Don't confuse love with lust: Being young & inexperienced often means naive & easily duped. For girls, just because a guy says he loves you, it isn't necessarily TRUE. Be realistic, some guys ARE really out there for a free ride. Be careful with giving out your heart.

2. Don't rush into it: Life is a long journey. There's so much to discover & to learn about this world. Marriage CAN be a burden if you can't manage it, especially if you're not ready. Take your time to learn who you are & who you can be, before you share yourself with someone else. 
3. Be prepared: Marriage isn't just about being with someone you love but about committing to that person. Marriage is work. Be ready for bumps along the way & it helps to be stable financially, emotionally, physically before taking the plunge. 

4. Be sure: If you have doubts, it's probably not the right time to get into it. Weigh all the alternatives, balance your heart with your mind & seek counsel from others. Marriage cannot be taken lightly & it should NEVER be a means to an end. 
I've not much to say on the matter since I'm not exactly experienced in this lol...At least I've some loose ideas about how I evaluate whether I'm ready to commit. Marriage is a wonderful thing; I hope to have the same happy union as my parents :)

5 comments:

Radin87 said...

Scientifically speaking, the right age for marriage start in 20 years old for women and 25 years old for men.

But, it is up for individual. In fact, many of my friends has already married and have a child in their 22's.

I think I may add another factor especially in Malaysian Muslim community, where early marriage is a tradition for some state. Example : Kelantanese.

It is common for fellow kelantanese to married early and usually have a great-grandchildren when they reach 60 years old.

My cousin married when she and her husband just graduate (22 years old), after 5 years they have already 2 children.

In her case, her husband is very reliable and have steady income. So, i think no problem for her case...

Anonymous said...

Gal, i was waiting for the "mom's requirements" list :P
or... at least yours, haha

Rowan said...

@Radin: I think as long as the couple is aware of the commitment they are making to each other, it should be perfectly fine :)

@Anonymous: My list isn't refined. Mom wants durian, cheesecake & wine, they are compulsory offerings for every visit :p

Anonymous said...

Awww... darn ;p
I was hoping to get a glimpse of your own list.
To Radin:
Bro, tell me your own story after you get married for yourself, ROFL

Rowan said...

Well here's my rough list lol:

1. Able to do housework & cook
2. Family-oriented
3. Independent
4. Intellectual (I want to be able to debate/discuss issues with him)
5. Open-minded
6. Decent & a gentleman
7. Loves music (if he can play music, that's a plus)
8. Appreciates fine arts
9. Funny
10. Romantic

Can't think of much, I think these are common traits that girls everywhere want :D