The Huffington Post recently published 10 Reasons It’s Totally Fine To Never Get Married. The article promises to present “valid reasons that remaining unhitched could actually leave you better off financially, mentally and even physically.”
Unfortunately, though there are certainly valid reasons why someone might not want to marry, the ten reasons I quote verbatim below are NOT those reasons. So gird up your loins and join me as I counter the absurd assertions made in this post.
Please know that if the original piece was well-reasoned I would take a much softer approach. But it isn’t, so I’m not.
1. Most people aren’t in a hurry to get married anymore.
Right away we start with a hum dinger. A good reason not to get married is simply that other people aren’t. (I think this is called peer pressure.)
Well there we are. I guess we’re done.
By the way, most people don’t eat healthy, pay off debt, get masters degrees or go on mission trips either. So I suppose that’s reason enough to cross those goals off your list.
2. In fact, many people feel there aren’t many advantages to being married.
Notice they don’t say there aren’t many advantages to being married, but that “many people feel” that way (and they reference a Pew survey to prove it).
I for one, encourage people to ignore the facts and go with their feelings. You know, like “Use the force, Luke!” And when you do, you’ll divine there aren’t many advantages to getting married.
3. For men, being married could be connected to being overweight.
BACHELORHOOD: the new weight loss plan for men!
Does marriage actually make people gain weight? I thought that was a factor of diet and exercise. Please tell me they’re joking.
No such luck, they’ve got statistics to prove the correlation, so listen up men! If you’re going to get married, buy bigger pants.
4. Marriage can present a slew of financial problems.
The last person I remember using the word “slew” as a reference to quantity (and not as in: “I slew the dragon!”) was my Grandfather. He died some time ago, but before he did, he and my Grandmother survived over 50+ years of marriage (and likely a slew of financial problems).
Incidentally, the veritable slew of financial problems specified in the article amounts to a total of three:
- Laws that require spouses to be responsible for each other’s debt (So is marriage or debt the problem here?)
- The need to care for an aging spouse (Don’t get married lest I have to financially care for the most important person in my life. Check.)
- Losing financial aid for your children’s education due to higher combined household income (So now marriage is bad financially even when it’s good financially?)
5. Marriage can seem like an outdated institution, and some people just don’t want to fit into that mold.
Marriage isn’t cool. Why didn’t you just say so?!
That is unless you’re a child. Then the outdated institution of marriage also happens to offer you the nurture, instruction and love of two people who raise you to become a healthy, productive member of society. Well, at least it does when a child’s parents determine to “fit into the mold” of the “outdated institution” formerly know as marriage.
6. Getting married can put your friendships at risk.
Uhhhhhhh… what if you marry one of your friends?
Like your best friend?
Newsflash: ANY significant lifestyle change can put friendships at risk including a new job, new neighborhood, new school, or new church.
Oh, and great friends don’t leave people just because they get married. Not even if they gain weight.
7. Marriage can lead to the risky habit of relying on one individual for every emotional need.
Do some people treat their spouse like this? YES!
Is this the fault of marriage? NO!
Fact is, many unmarried young adults are guilty of this very thing. Only it’s usually a parent they turn to. So I would argue that this is not a habit people learn in marriage, but one they carry with them into marriage.
8. These days, a happy marriage requires a serious commitment of time and energy that can be hard to maintain.
“These days”? What do they mean by “these days”?!?! Does the writer think that back in the “old days” before marriage became “outdated” that “a serious commitment of time and energy” was easy to maintain?
Let me be clear. If you don’t want to make “a serious commitment of time and energy that can be hard to maintain,” THEN DON’T GET MARRIED! But if this is true of you then you don’t want to get an education, build a career or buy a house either.
Actually, if this is how you think, then you really don’t want to grow up. Life is about committing time and energy to the things that matter.
9. And, as dim as it sounds, plenty of marriages in this country end up in a divorce anyway.
Plenty of picnics get rained out, plenty of students never graduate, plenty of employees lose their jobs, plenty of business start-ups fail (most), and plenty of NFL teams never make it to the Superbowl (all, but two of them a year). Despite these sober facts, I encourage you to plan a picnic, apply for college, get a job, pursue a career dream and root for your favorite team every single season.
And if anything’s worth the risk, a well-made marriage decision is it! (BTW, the actual divorce stats aren’t as bad as you think.)
10. Plus, there’s a good alternative to marriage. It’s called a civil union or a domestic partnership.
So is this alternative like the minor leagues of marriage or is it a different sport altogether?
Whatever! Let’s just be grateful that in at least some states we have a good alternative to marriage. Who knows, maybe the research will show civil unions actually bring about weight loss instead of gain.
A man can dream, can’t he?
I hope in the midst of the sarcasm you could see hope for your future.
Yes, your future marriage will be hard. We’re talking about a lifetime commitment to another sinner like yourself. How easy could anyone imagine it would be?!? But whether you get married next week, next November or never, live for ideals higher than yourself and pursue healthy relationships at all times.
And while you’re at it, support the married folks you know. Marriage is not only hard, in a world where articles like this one from the Huffington Post receive over 28K Facebook likes, it can feel as lonely as being single. Only fatter!
Oh, and if this post gets over 29K Facebook likes, all likers will lose weight!
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The LoveEd study guide series, Beyond Sex & Salvation, will empower you to prepare for relational success when it counts: BEFORE YOU FALL IN LOVE! It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. Check out the first two 8-lesson study guides in our store. You can walk through it on your own, but it’s more fun with friends, so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study. Even better? And ask a married couple you respect to lead it!