Ten Darn Good Reasons to Get Married and Have Kids Young

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“Why are you traveling to Europe?” asks the man behind the counter.

“We are here on vacation for our tenth anniversary.”

He lifts his head up from our passports with an awkward stare of shocked disbelief.

“You two aren’t old enough to have been married for ten years,” he says, struggling to ascertain the real reason we are in his line at immigration control.

“We got married young. I was twenty, she was eighteen. We are thirty and twenty-eight now, with four kids and number five on the way!”

His look of shock turns to a sarcastic smirk, as he laughingly says, “That’s insane. I’m thirty and not getting married anytime soon. I can’t understand why anyone would want to get married so young, let alone have kids. Have fun in London.”

He shakes his head, stamps our passports and waves us through.

And with this singular encounter, I have just summarized the last ten years of our lives – full of confused stares and awkward questions.

So in light of ten years, I want to offer ten reasons why it’s not only okay, but can be very good to get married and have children young.

  1. Because you get to grow up together AND grow old together.
  2. Because you are fighting for holiness. Despite our culture’s broad acceptance of sex outside of marriage, co-habitation and more, God has given us a right and better way to enjoy sex within the meaningful and satisfying confines of covenant marriage. When you’re young, your hormones are going nuts and you’re a lot more likely to make stupid sexual mistakes that could potentially cause a lot of physical and emotional damage to yourself and others. I’m not saying marry just anyone so you can have sex, but if you’re “burning with passion” (1 Cor. 7:9), getting married young helps protect and empower you as you contend for the holiness of yourself and your spouse.
  3. Because you will never really find the right person and if you do, you’re probably not the right person for them – at least for long. I don’t mean this to sound fatalistic and this doesn’t mean just marry the next person you date because you’re not gonna find “the one.” Certainly you should have standards that honor God and set you up for a fighting chance to win at marriage. But you’re both gonna change a ton over the years. Both Amanda and I are completely different people than we were ten years ago. We have both gone through various phases of personality and passions. It is like my wife has been three different women over the last decade. I have loved all three versions of her, and she has loved most of the eight or so versions of me. The inevitability of change is one of the key reasons we make a promise to love, honor and cherish each other’s future selves.
  4. Because you’re never really going to be ready. You will always want to make more money, do more things, and go more places. Getting married and having kids young just means that you get to do all those things with the one you love by your side as your partner. Sure, you may have to get creative and work hard, but you’re gonna have to do those things anyway if you ever want to accomplish anything worth doing.
  5. Because few things can sanctify you like a spouse and children. God the Holy Spirit uses these gifts to mature and help you grow up; changing you for the better. Nothing confronts your selfishness and depravity like putting the needs of others before your own needs. Marriage is hard work. Parenting is no walk in the park (though it sometimes involves walks in the park). It’s fun and rewarding, but in no way is it easy or comfortable. Yet God has not called us to comfort and ease. He’s called us to die to self and be made into his image and few things help us do this like our spouse and kids.
  6. Because having kids is better than having dogs. Dogs can’t laugh at your dumb jokes or tell you they love you in just the right way to melt your heart for the millionth time. They can’t take care of you when you’re old. You will never be your dog’s hero. Your dog will never come to you for advice. You will never watch with amazement as your dog comes to saving faith in Jesus. You will not spend eternity worshiping Jesus with your dog.
  7. Because having kids doesn’t mean life as you know it is over. When you get married and have kids young, you are a lot less likely to make your entire life about your kids. You still have things you want to do and having children young doesn’t mean you have to put everything on hold until those little guys are out of the house (they don’t stay little for long). They are not running the show. Your spouse is the most important person in your life and will be there after your kids are out of the house. So do yourself a favor and don’t make your life all about your kids. Date each other, do fun things together, go on vacations together and enjoy life. I’m not saying ignore your kids or be irresponsible, or that there won’t be seasons that you need to ratchet back, but your kids won’t die if they aren’t the center of attention.
  8. Because when you’re young, you have more stamina and vitality. This is incredibly helpful both biologically when it comes to starting a family, as well as practically when it comes to the many complex and amazing aspects of marriage and parenting. Sleepless nights with a newborn, rolling around on the floor, playing ball, wrestling or carrying kids on your shoulders for hours on end – all are much easier when you’re in your prime. Not to mention how much more you will enjoy your grandkids when you’re still young and your kids start bringing those little guys into the world.
  9. Because you don’t want to be confused for the grandparents at your kids’ graduation, but it might be nice to be confused for the parents at your grandkids’ graduation.
  10. Because having kids young means they graduate and are out of the house when you’re still young. Only instead of being young and broke, you’ll be young with money. You’ll likely have spent years establishing your career and finances, and will have the finances and freedom to do many of the things you always wanted to do.

Obviously this is not for everyone. God calls different people to different things and not everyone is called to marry and have children young. But by all means, this is appropriate and good for many and just because it is strange to the culture we live in doesn’t mean it’s wrong. It’s an adventure and adventures take courage.

  • brandee
    November 8, 2013

    my husband and i were married at 18 and twenty one our married indeed has been great being a mom of a 5 year old a set of twins who are 3 and 8 months pregnant with my first boy it aint easy we both work and family is our life the biggest thing is we had support alomost 6 years later were still going strong we are currently raising our three girls and my two nieces who we will be adopting by march 2014 it hasnt always been easy but support and our love for each other has made us strong

  • John
    March 8, 2014

    This article is spot on! But, I’m doing it the other way. It took the accident that ended my carrier to allow me to even think of fatherhood. I am 51 and not in good health. I have a son 7 and a daughter 1.5 years old. God has given me the grace to have them. My son has shown me a reason to live. I would love to have had them when I was young. But, Im a sinner like the rest of us and I don’t think I would have done half the job I can do for my children now. As Peter was the rock to the early church. My son is my rock. He has kept me going when I had no reason to continue. Even though I think children would have been better younger. I take what I get and praise GOD

  • Polly
    March 18, 2015

    This article made my day! My husband and I got married at ages 19 & 21, seven years ago. We have four children, and are very happy living our “abnormal” traditional life. I can imagine that when we go out for our 10th anniversary, people won’t be able to believe it either!

  • FB
    July 14, 2015

    You are spot on. Even though I may not live the faith as seriously as you , all what you said is so true. I m “sad” to have opened my eyes so late ( im 29, but my wife 24 and has a second kid with me now) but so happy tohave opened my eyes.

  • Bethany Lotulelei
    October 27, 2015

    I love this! Thank you for sharing. I got married a few months ago at the ripe old age of 23. None of my friends are married, and I can’t tell you the number of times my single friends have told me they are so happy to have freedom and be able to travel, work any job, and not depend on anyone but themselves. I keep my mouth shut, but I wish I could tell them that they can still do those things married to an awesome guy. Ah well. Married life is fabulous, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

  • Frimpong
    January 28, 2016

    Woow,,,what a nice piece, am a ghanaian of 27 years and on the verge of marrying to the love of my life but opposed by my family due to economic hardship in our system so what should i do

  • JW
    June 2, 2016

    First of all that would be very impossible to find a Good woman today that is Not very high maintenance, independent, selfish, spoiled, greedy, picky, and so very power money hungry since many of us Good men are Not Single by choice which had we been that Lucky to find a Good woman like that in the first place since we really Would Have been all settled down by now.

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