I don't know about you, but it seems as though a lot of the people I went to elementary school with are already settling down and getting married ... in their 20s. And, I'm just sitting back here, asking myself, why?
How can you be sure that in five years, when you've matured and have your career going, you will still want to be with this person? And, don't give me that whole "when you find the one, you just know," lovey-dovey line.
How can you know that you've found "the one" when you've only dated some? Let's face it: You just can't. Okay, maybe you can, but it's rare and I, personally, would rather be absolutely sure than gamble with someone's feelings.
But, hey, if your marriage is working at this age, good for you! Congrats and all, but for those of us who feel like we should also jump on that I-need-to-get-married-now-too bandwagon, here's why you shouldn't:
1. You don't know what outfit to wear today, let alone with whom you want to spend the rest of your life.
When you aren't sure of even the simplest things in your life, I think that's a good sign you shouldn't be searching to settle down just because "your friends are doing it."
Everyone needs to make certain life-changing decisions at his or her own pace. Take your relationships as they come and enjoy them in the moment.
2. Life doesn't have a strict timeline you must follow.
You don't have to finish college, get a job in your field, get a mortgage and get married. And, you certainly don't have to get married just to avoid being the odd, single girl in your group.
I mean honestly, that's crazy. Who cares if you're the single girl?! Enjoy it and embrace it.
3. You don't have to give up sleeping in the middle of your queen-sized bed.
I don't think this one needs further explanation...
4. The entire bathroom counter is yours to pile with as many makeup/hair/skin products as you'd like.
Because you absolutely need two moisturizers, a night cream, eye cream, acne cream, facial exfoliating scrub, face wash and multiple makeup removers. Right?
5. You haven't experienced enough people.
By that, I don't necessarily mean sleeping around. I simply mean you haven't gotten to know and experience different people.
You found one guy or gal who happens to also like toast with mayo, puts the toilet seat down after he's done using it, doesn't leave hair in the shower drain, your parents like him or her, etc.
So, he or she must be the one! Let me just say, no. Those are minuscule things compared to what you have to face down the road.
6. When you marry that young, you have to know who you are, but at the same time, grow with someone.
You don't get to slowly figure out who you are and what you want as you get older. You don't get to go through challenges on your own and at the end be able to say, "I accomplished this on my own," if you have someone glued to your hip.
Yes, it may be easier when you have someone in your corner, but I think it's important to go through tough things on your own when you're young to prepare you for even tougher situations later on.
7. Who you are at 21 isn't who you will be at 28.
Those seven years can make a big difference when it comes to changing as a person.
Think about it: When you started college at 18, were you the same person at 21? No, you probably weren't, and that was only three years later.
8. You need some independence.
You went away to college, got a place of your own or with a few roommates, and now, you're immediately moving in with someone? Where's your own space? Where's the selfish "you and you alone" phase?
You don't get to do things completely solo. You now go to the gym together, shopping, church, parties, everything. You do every single thing with another person.
9. You're being smart, not selfish.
You need to put yourself first in your early 20s. Focus on being healthy, acing your assignments at school and figuring out where exactly you're hoping your education will take you.
When you get married, it's about compromise. There's no more "me"; there's always "we." You have to learn to share your time, make your husband feel loved and cared about, etc.
That doesn't leave you with the time to love and care about yourself by putting yourself first. And, when you're so young, that's very important; not doing it is a big mistake.
10. You still have so many experiences and adventures to take before you say that whole "till death do us part" bit.
Your 20s should be about experiencing things for yourself. You're young; this is your time to be selfish and make bad decisions and still be able to recover.
You have the next 30 to 40 years (or more) to compromise and share your time with someone.