I’m sure you’ve heard people say that a couple is too young to get married. It also isn’t common to see an elderly couple get married. But with that, you still have high school sweethearts together after 20 years and nursing home couples saying, “I do.” So, is there a best age to get married that makes it more likely to last?
If you get married right in that sweet spot, will you be more likely to stay together? Will you be happier? If you wait until you have your career established and purchased a home, will you have a more successful marriage? Or is growing together and handling hardships what makes a marriage last?
Yes and no to all of it.
[Read: The 9 big emotional needs in a marriage that hold it all together]
What is the best age to get married?
According to statistics, the best age to get married is 28-32. During this time, marriages are more likely to last longer than five years. Now, that may be considered a successful marriage to some. It is assumed that by this age a couple is stable financially and experienced enough on their own to handle the responsibilities of a marriage.
But, there are so many variables that go into a marriage. These statistics don’t say that a 34-year-old’s marriage will fail or that those who get married in their early twenties are doomed.
[Read: Why we fall in love – a little science and a little fate]
They also don’t say that everyone who gets married between 28 and 32 will have a long-lasting marriage. So, is there such a thing as the best age to get married?
I’d have to say no. Sure, these numbers may make sense scientifically and mathematically. Yes, the brain reaches maturity at 25, so it would make sense that making that commitment after 25 would turn out better. But, everyone matures at a different rate. You, your siblings, and your ex all grow at different rates. Just because you may be prepared for marriage doesn’t mean your partner is and vice versa.
So, what is the best age to get married? I’d say there isn’t one. Is there a better age? A more likely to be successful age? A more practical age? Sure. But, what does that mean?
[Read: 12 healthy relationship expectations that define a good love life]
Why is there a best age to get married?
Marriage is not a business deal. It isn’t something that needs to have certain T’s crossed and certain I’s dotted in order to go through. You don’t have to be ready to have kids to be married. You don’t have to be settled or living on your own or making a certain amount of money. Sure, there are ages where these things are smoothed out, and maybe a marriage after you’ve figured all that out is better in some ways.
Just because statistically a marriage doesn’t end in divorce doesn’t mean it is happy. It could mean that these couples are trying harder to stay together or staying together because they have a lot to lose from breaking up.
Although it can be reassuring to know you are getting married at the statistically reported age where marriages last longer, it isn’t a sure thing. A lasting marriage doesn’t define a happy marriage.
[Read: How to make a relationship last – 19 love commandments]
But, 28-32 is still the time many people cling to as the best age to get married. Why? Well, on average, once you’ve hit your late twenties you’ve had some experiences. You’ve taken on responsibilities, you know what you want and are more confident in yourself. You are also old enough but not set in your ways. You can still compromise.
Marriage requires changes to your daily routine and accommodation for someone else. At a certain age, it can be more difficult to break out of what you’re used to and adjust. This all makes logical sense, but that isn’t all that makes up a relationship. The thing that helps relationships last isn’t just honesty and communication, but a desire to make it work and be together. That can come at any age.
[Read: The secrets of a happy marriage that can make or break your romance]
On top of that, studies show that couples that marry in their mid-to-late forties have the lowest divorce rate overall. But, for those couples that want to have a child naturally, that wouldn’t seem the most appropriate.
Another theory is the 37% rule. This rule is said to help you make many decisions like finding the right job candidate, house, or partner. Basically, the best time for you to make your choice is when you’ve seen 37% of the options. But, with this rule, age 26 is the ideal time to find your perfect mate, only if you are looking between the ages of 18 and 40. Although, we may like to think so, at 18 most of us aren’t looking for our forever love. So if you push that age back a few years the 37% rate would change. [Read: Cold feet or worse? The biggest signs you’re not really ready for marriage]
Just like statistics, this theory doesn’t carry much weight. If one were to base their love life off either one of these, I imagine they would be wildly stressed out and even let down. Acknowledging the best age to get married should be more of a loose guide than a solid piece of evidence.
These ages and time frames don’t offer enough specifics. Relationship have so many ins and outs. There is so much that could go wrong or right. Looking at just the age will never be enough. Knowing whether or not it is the right time to get married for you shouldn’t be about how old you are. It should be about if it feels right. Do you feel safe? Do you feel happy?
These things are what make or break a marriage. Will you see me waiting to move in with my boyfriend until we’re engaged because that has a higher success rate? No. Would I never consider someone that didn’t graduate college because divorce rates are higher among those that aren’t college educated? No.
[Read: 14 unrealistic expectations that can ruin your love life]
So, what is the best age to get married? Well, now that you know the statistics, the answer is simple… whenever you think it is!
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