People Should Marry Earlier
September 27, 2011
I was reading some of the blogs featured on the WordPress* main page today. Among the comments on one, I found this:
. . . I’ve been doing online dating off and on since college! It worked better for me when I was younger—possibly because that was before most people have really been burned and they were more optimistic and open.
It doesn’t seem to occur to her that dating always “works better” for younger women, and works less and less well as a woman ages. (She’s thirty.) I’m told that a woman’s fertility starts to decline around age 27, and that at 35 it’s already down to half what it was at 25 (and half of that at 40). Whether those are the precise numbers or not, a woman’s fertility certainly declines over time, and with it (think of it in evolutionary terms if you like) her attractiveness to men.
I don’t mean to pick on Miss Bohrer; she actually seems pretty wise and aware at this point, and in any case she can’t change her age—what do I expect her to do?
But that’s kind of my point: Inexorably, relentlessly, we get a year older every year, and we can never go back and unmake the decisions we made when our whole life was ahead of us. So it’s extremely important that we all grow up and start a family in a timely manner, if possible. (I realize that some minority of people are not called to marriage or having children, but the rest of us had better get on it. If you feel any desire ever to have children, or any desire to have sex, assume that you’re called to marriage.)
Again, I don’t mean to pick on any one person; our whole culture has a problem—adolescence is prolonged into our twenties, or even later, and people get married late, if at all. I understand that this was all supposed to be for women’s good—“liberate” them from benighted patriarchal obsessions with their “virtue” or “honor” so that they can have sex with whomever they feel like, just like men, and “liberate” them from early marriage and child rearing so that they can have fulfilling careers—but feminism has failed women. As the old saying goes, Why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free? Liberals can mock all they want, but the principle is, in fact, true: Men today can get all the milk they want for free—often the question is not whether a girl will sleep with a guy before marriage or not, but whether she will do so on the first date or the second—and as a result, many men are profoundly uninterested in marriage. As a result, many women don’t get married and start trying to conceive until it’s too late, to their unending regret. As many women can tell you (this one, for example, or this one), feminism hasn’t made them happy. Many women are lonely and unfulfilled, wishing for the marriage and children that may never come.
Of course, as Christianity could have told them, a life of sin doesn’t ultimately lead to fulfillment or joy for men, either. As the commenter continues,
What I see now is a lot of guys that are either desperate to get married and have kids, or their profiles are so hateful towards women that it seems they just want to vent rather than actually date!
Women should convert to Christianity and stop sleeping around. They’re actively working against their own interests and squandering a valuable, but very quickly depreciating, opportunity.
- If all women refused to fornicate (and if the Supreme Court allowed us to outlaw pornography, by the way), men would suddenly be much, much more interested in marriage. No, seriously, you have no idea how eager even selfish and short-sighted men would be to shape up and become responsible family men, if only the natural incentives God gave us were allowed to work properly.
- Barring widespread cultural change, however, you can still make all the difference in the world to the direction of your own individual life. As Miss Bohrer says, a woman will be treated more or less as well as she demands to be treated.
If you’re willing to slouch into a relationship and sleep with a guy before he’s made the one promise that’s really irrevocable—marriage—then don’t be surprised if he doesn’t respect you or marriage, slouches his way selfishly through whatever relationship you have, and eventually either breaks up with you (regardless of whether he has formally married you by that point or not) or just coasts on in a lackluster relationship that doesn’t make you happy.
If, on the other hand, you refuse to compromise morally, and won’t settle for a man who selfishly asks you to, you’ll have cleared room in your life for a responsible, God-fearing man who respects you as a person and loves you for who you are. There may be fewer of them around, but they make much better husbands and fathers.
Everyone should also read The Politically Incorrect Guide to Women, Sex, and Feminism. Ignore the pugnacious (pignacious?) cover and title, and the occasional poor spelling inside (believe me, it bothered me too); it’s a serious book with a lot of useful information, some of which the world really doesn’t want you to know. I recommended it to a liberal friend and she actually read it, and said it was good, which is a pretty strong recommendation.
Update (October 20th, 2011): I also recommend the following related writings:
- Kathleen Quiring’s “In Defense of Early Marriage” and the other entries she links to there, expanding on various objections to early marriage; “Why You Shouldn’t Marry Early (Or Ever)”; and the rest of her excellent blog
- Mark Regnerus, “The Case for Early Marriage”, Christianity Today
- Mark Steyn, “We Are the Children” section of chapter four, After America
* Further note for anyone who hasn’t lost interest and stopped reading yet: WordPress automatically “corrects” my capitalization every time I use the word “WordPress” anywhere on my blog: It automatically adds the anomalous capital “P” in the middle of the word. I guess it’s part of their “branding”; I guess it’s pretty important to them. It is possible to work around that, by manually entering the HTML code for the lowercase-“p” character, and I used to do that, but I give up. It’s just not worth the trouble; let them have their branding, it’s more important to them than it is to me.