Does that sound familiar my desi millennial girls? All of us have been asked this question so many times in our lives. Well, I don’t think it’s even a question. It is a prelude to “Oh! so you are married” or “So you are not married yet?”

It is hard to understand why the age at which someone gets married is so important to the society we reside in. You can’t define early or late in terms of a number, which is relative.

Frame of reference should be important if we want to understand what it means to be early or late for something. In the case of marriage, it could be circumstances, personal choices and the will to marry.

Oh! You are married, already?

Marrying early is a choice. I can be career-oriented, have dreams and still marry early. Marrying early does not mean that you want to be a stay-at-home wife. 

If you marry early, there are many benefits. As a youngster, it’s easier to connect with the new family and understand their importance as you are still flexible and ready to learn. Well, you are still not worldly-wise, which could be an advantage.

Girls who marry in their early 20s are often judged by the so-called progressive people, who believe marrying young means you don’t have aspirations.

Sometimes, you will encounter fellow sisters who will encourage you to marry early because child-bearing is easier when you have a young body. As regressive as it sounds, I empathize with them and understand the kind of social pressure they must have gone through. 

“Marriage is not just a commitment or a contract between two people, but the commitment is extended to families and sometimes to relatives “

At a young age, this sort of complexity is hard to process and we are just not equipped to deal with it. In a country as diverse as ours, with so many religious, cultural, geographical, class, and caste differences, it can be tough to crack the code of marriage. In many cases, it requires a major lifestyle change as you enter into a new family (known or unknown).

This kind of transition can be easier when you marry young. That said, the age you get married is inconsequential to the kind of adjustments required in any marriage.

Many of these adjustments are not limited to one gender. I think the biggest difference between marrying early or late is the kind of social situations girls have to deal with when it comes to this topic.

“So you are not married yet!?”

All of us have friends or cousins who are living content lives and pursuing their dreams. But they are forced to avoid social gatherings for the fear of getting judged as they didn’t marry at an age agreeable to those around them.

Let’s remember that some of these folks might not even be against marriage. Maybe they are just waiting for the right person or busy with other stuff right now! But they will have to face the proverbial “kahan hai beti aaj kal aapki?” by their parents’ friend or a relative.

On other occasions, it’s will be the mom asking you to meet a random person who has been referred by a long-lost relative. At other times, a random colleague will ask you, “Why aren’t you married?” and will probably judge you for having a “lifestyle.” Having too many of such social interactions can take its toll on your confidence and mental health. Maybe that’s why we avoid them right?

Irrespective of the gender, our society makes us believe that marriageable age is linked to one’s physical appearance (which is at its peak when you’re young!) and financial well being. Therefore, marrying a few or more than a few years after you are “settled” is frowned upon in our society.

Now let’s talk about the benefits of marrying late. As we grow older and better at our work, we get more confident about what we want. It makes us choose a partner truly worthy of us.

As you advance in age, you also understand your self and your surroundings better. You are generally more aware of what you like, don’t like, want and don’t want. The experience of interacting with so many people makes you pragmatic.

But here’s a tricky one. It might also make you less flexible towards adjusting to someone else’s routine and life. Some find it repelling to change their lives for others. But again, each person is different and handles situations differently.

When should I marry?

Well, nobody, including us, can answer that for you. You have the right to choose a partner and you have the right to choose at a time you think is right. No amount of social pressure should force you to question this decision and it’s only right if you can cut out that kind of negativity from your life.

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. It is not important that he should mature as soon as an apple tree or an oak. Shall he turn his spring into summer?

Henry David Thoreau

DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed in this post are the personal views of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aweekinlife.com. Any omissions or errors are the author’s and A Week In Life does not assume any liability or responsibility for them.

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