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Is There an Ideal Age for Marriage?

November 11, 2008

My friend Vicki sent me a link to an interesting article from USA Today titled, “Sooner vs. Later: Is there An Ideal Age for First Marriage?” by Sharon Jayson. The title grabbed my attention, so I read through it. Maybe you’ll want to read it as well. Here’s the link: It’s got a lot of interesting statistics in it. I’ll share some with you.

For all you teen readers, here’s the stat I definitely need to share with you: “It's well documented that those who marry before age 20 are two to three times more likely to divorce, researchers say.” So please don’t get married yet!

I don’t know if you read Insight magazine or not, but we know relationship issues are a huge part of your life. That’s why we have asked “Love Doctor” Shayna Bailey to write a weekly column in Insightto answer reader questions on relationship topics. If you don’t get Insight, you can still read Shayna’s column here on our Web site. On our home page, just click either on the word “Advice” on the menu on the left side of the page, or you can click on her picture, and then you can read several of her archived columns. Here are some of the questions she’s already answered: “What are God’s guidelines when it comes to dating?” “Right or not?” “How often to people really love each other when they say they do?” “Can you get married at 16?”

Getting back to the USA Today article, it didn’t really come out and say exactly what age is the best age to get married. One study cited in the article asked young adults and their parents what age they thought was best. Of the sample of 536 college students surveyed, they said age 25 was ideal, yet their parents said they thought age 26 was better.

The article pointed out that many students these days are more into self-development—such as higher education—than they used to be and are waiting until later to get married. This is a good thing, and that’s why we, the staff of Insight, encourage readers to wait to date until they are in college or older.

Gotta share one more stat with you . . . in a 1946 Gallup Poll, the people who responded said the ideal age for marriage was 25 for men and 21 for women. Now, some sixty years later, after talking to about 500 adults by phone, a Gallup poll found that people are saying 25 is the idea age for women and 27 for men.

The Bible doesn’t give us specific guidelines for the ideal age to get married. So what’s you’re opinion? What do you personally think is the ideal age for getting married? Can you back up your opinion with a story or some facts that you know?

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