Marriage Right After College

It’s always better together, right??

I have a friend I worked with at school who recently graduated from college, and like every other recent college graduate, she has a million and one things to worry about (Where to get a job? Where to live? How will I pay off student loans? Can I make it in the real world? etc…). Yet, unlike other graduates, my friend is also planning her wedding.

Her boyfriend proposed to her the summer before senior year and she said yes. Naturally, I was excited for her, but I was also more worried for her than any of my other friends. How do you juggle all of the woes that come with being a college graduate and the newlywed life as well? She’s not the first person to do it. It’s been done before, but I don’t think I could do it.

My friend says marriage after college will make the transition easier. I don’t know whether it will all work out or not, I’m not a fortune teller, but I do know marriage is a tricky situation no matter what the circumstance. It can either be the best decision you’ve ever made or the worst. I know people think all you need for a flourishing healthy marriage is love, but let’s be honest, there’s more to it than that.

Most recent college graduates already have a boatload of financial struggles to tackle. My friend assumes there will be less of a struggle with money issues because being married means double the salary (not to mention, double the financial commitments and debts). Yet, I think that just because a couple may have enough money for the wedding doesn’t mean they’ll have enough money for marriage. One of the largest, if not the largest problem that causes married couples to divorce is the stress that financial issues cause on their relationship.

Beyond finances, a young married couple needs to make sure that their future goals are compatible and that they stay that way. Today, a couple may not want to have kids, but later on in the marriage, as they grow past the age of 25, their priorities and goals will most likely shift. Although this is important for any couple, no matter what the age, younger couples tend to still be in a huge state of transition, not sure exactly who they are or how they fit into the world yet, which makes this point even more crucial for them. As the individuals grow and develop as people, they need to assure that the person they chose for a partner is still on the same page with them, or it will take a huge toll on their relationship.

I think having someone to lean on (emotionally, financially, etc.) could possibly make the transition into the “real world” easier. I’m sure there’s a lot of graduates who wish there was someone there (besides mommy and daddy) to help when times get tough and lonely, but the fear of being alone should not push anyone into a marriage that they may not be ready for. I am worried often this fear overwhelms young graduates into believing they can’t possibly tackle life alone (after being so used to having the safety nets of school, home, and a significant other), and that translates into not being able to live without their current beau; which then translates into the assumption that if they can’t live without the other person, it must be undying love and devotion, rather than just needing someone…anyone to fill that space they’ve grown accustomed to.

I don’t think it’s a stupid idea to get married after college as long as you make wise decisions before it. You need to be 100% sure this is what you want to do. Even if you’re 99% sure, that’s not enough. If you’re serious about your relationship, then get engaged, but don’t rush to the alter until you’re absolutely ready.


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