As written by someone who got hitched in both decades.
Every time I see a young woman flashing her engagement ring, I want to grab her by the hand, sit her down, and counsel her.
I'm 34 years old and on my second marriage.
My divorcee demographics:
- Met my future ex-husband: Age 25
- Bling, bling, got the ring: Age 26
- Got hitched: Age 27
- Got ditched: Age 28
I'm proud of the fact that I got divorced in my 20s. It means I had the courage to leave my home, pick up the pieces, and start my life over when all my friends were getting married and having babies.
I could've stayed in an unhappy situation — spending every night sleeping next to someone who no longer wanted to be married to me — knowing I would never have the future of my dreams.
Instead, I chose to chase those dreams. And now, I'm living them.
I'm grateful for my "failed" marriage.
I prefer to refer to it as a learning experience because it led me to where I'm supposed to be: happily remarried, and mommy to a beautiful daughter and two fur-children.
I made my divorce a positive experience by uniting with other twenty-something divorcées to show them that they're not lone wolves — we have a pack. I formed a private online support group, hosted local meet-ups, conducted interviews, and published a book: Trash the Dress: Stories of Celebrating Divorce in your 20s.
When my marriage ended, I made a list of qualities I wanted in a new mate, and luckily enough I found someone who meets all the requirements on my checklist. We got married when I was 32 years old, and I can say with confidence that this wedding dress will be preserved.
Marriage in your 30s is way better than in your 20s. Now that I have my happily ever after, I can't imagine going through life with my ex-husband. Marriage works when you've found the right person.
But there are also advantages to waiting until you're a little older to tie the knot:
1. By your 30s, you most likely have sewed your oats.
You've dated around, know what's out there, and got all the bad boy lovin' out of your system.
2. You've had enough time to recover from your first major heartbreak.
During my research, I found that many women got married because they thought they'd never find anyone else to compare to their first love, so they settled.
3. Your 20s are about self-indulgence.
You're creating yourself. By your 30s, you know who you are and what you can offer a partner. You're not going to outgrow each other.
4. With age comes maturity and better communication skills.
Instead of fighting over little things or pushing issues under the rug, you know how to address them.
5. You know what you want.
You're not going to waste time dating someone in your 30s when you know it's not going anywhere, so the partner you marry will be someone with whom you can have a successful future.
6. You've established self-confidence.
By bringing out the best in yourself, you're enhancing your marriage.
7. By your 30s, you've hopefully learned how to manage money.
Finances are a huge source of conflict for couples and a reason many young couples divorce. Who wants to spend all their nights fighting about cash flow?
8. You're more secure in your career in your 30s.
This provides you the time and energy to focus on a marriage.
9. You've had time to live alone.
Either with a roommate or love interest, and you've become a responsible adult. You're not learning this while adjusting to marriage.
10. You've found your voice.
In your 20s, you're facing pressure from friends, family, and society to follow the norm. In your 30s, you have the courage to stand up for yourself. And that will lead you to where you should be and who's supposed to accompany you on this life adventure.