I got married when I was 24 years old. Sure, I had my share of uncertainties, but I also had a relationship with an amazing woman (for only one year) who I’d grown to love and trust.
If you’re looking for 100%, 90% or even 80% certainty in your relationship, then you should probably move to another planet. As far as I can tell, that level of confidence doesn’t exist here.
Marriage is one of those worthwhile experiences in life. Total dedication and fully exposed. It's a gift, worth the risk. I even write this as I await the arrival of our first baby, who was actually due yesterday, and trust me, it's so worth it. There's nothing more native, more natural, and more human than creating a family.
My purpose in writing is this, I want to encourage those who may be sitting on the sidelines, those who are not even in the game, and even those in a seven-year relationship without a formal commitment.
Here are 3 Overly Common, Crazy Excuses we use to Delay Marriage
One in Two Marriages End in Divorce:
That may be true, but since when do we let statistics guide our relational decisions? 96.9% of serious adult relationships end in breakup. Are you going to stop dating? If we were talking about your stock portfolio perhaps, but not your relationships. Many of us try to mitigate risk in relationships by using the excuse of this statistic, but it doesn’t actually reduce risk, it only reduces joy, experience, and fullness of life. We must remember we gain the most pleasure in the places of deepest commitment. This is one of life's most ironic laws: our sources of deepest pain are also our sources of deepest joy.
We Already Live Together:
My grandparents’ generation had this phrase, “Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?” They like to apply this expression to the fact that so many of “the young people these days” are living together, sleeping together, and generally doing life as if they were married when they’re not. They’ve got the milk, the cow, and the pseudo marriage but it’s a sham. To take this expression even further, when you’re “getting the milk for free” and “the cow” is not yours, you’re actually taking something that doesn’t belong to you. You’re stealing. Someone else is tending the field in which the cow grazes, paying for its food, and more. You get the point? In your relationship, you’ve got to decide: are you all in or all out? Stop riding the fence. As a man, there is nothing honorable, brave, or extraordinary about someone who avoids commitment.
Marriage Is Just a Piece of Paper:
Is it? Then why are so many struggles occurring in our culture today to redefine marriage, to stretch its definitions and borders? Marriage matters. I think there’s something innate in us that longs for the safety of deep commitment. Marriage creates a covenant – an agreement – between two consenting parties. It creates safety. It’s an act of courage to say, “I will stay, come hell or high water. I will not leave your side no matter what.” Ultimately, I think most people today, lack commitment because of unresolved brokenness in their past. They don’t have the emotional maturity, and instead of healing, they use the lame excuse, “Marriage is just a piece of paper” to continue the delay of marriage.
What other excuses have you seen people make to delay marriage? “I need to finish school” or “After we get a house”, etc.