A friend’s daughter asked me my thoughts a few week’s ago about marrying young, specifically in your late teens. I didn’t tell her not to. It wasn’t my place. I sent her to the bible, which is always a really good answer when you don’t know what else to say. In truth, marriage really hard in the best of times. In the worst times, it can be a disaster.
I believe some who marry very young wind up staring across the marital bed at someone they would never have chosen if they’d waited.
My brother married very young and it didn’t work. Two, decent, hardworking people that I admire very much couldn’t make a go of it. No abuse, no cheating, no evil intent. So, that’s my experience with marrying young. Not positive. But sometimes, God sends people into your life to change your viewpoint.
Yesterday I met a young lady who married young. She was still married at 26, with 2 young children. Her daughter was 4, almost 5, and her son was 2. She was married at 19. After her parents told her she needed a college degree, she went to a local junior college to get her associate’s degree and got married. But it wasn’t just her success in marriage that I found fascinating. It was the trials she had experienced at such a tender age.
Her husband was partially paralyzed in a terrible accident a couple of years ago. She told me that the day he took his first step after the accident he lost his job. He became despondent and started to give up. She refused to see him in a nursing home in his early twenties. She stood strong and told him that if he went that route she was going back home to her family in Oklahoma. He straightened up and went home, and their marriage continued through the hardship. He’s only able to walk with a walker, which is too treacherous to attempt in a house full of toddlers. Fortunately, his family is both close and close by to help.
Now, this young lady is facing another blow. The doctors are looking at her 2 year old boy for Autism. He doesn’t have an official diagnosis. The doctors want to wait to see if a language delay is his only issue. Lack of speech can cause meltdowns and tantrums due to frustration. I was a positive as I could be for her. I will pray that this young lady doesn’t have to shoulder so much so young.
I shared with her my belief that our trials either make our marriages stronger than ever or break them up completely. The fortunate ones survive. Mine has. Hers has. I have to admit that I have such tremendous admiration for this young lady. And I didn’t even get her name. She must have a will of steel. A backbone of iron. Never giving up. Never quit.
So, perhaps young marriages have a chance after all. And perhaps we should all learn something from this amazing person. The lesson of being persistent. The lesson of enduring through hard days. The lesson of determination.
What excuses work now?
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photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/54177777@N00/8689475955″>20130106_IMG_1734</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a>