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Train Your Children to Succeed in Marriage

Aug 18, 2007
Prior to the 1960s, it was common for couples to get married at a very young age. In fact, it wasn't that long ago that a woman was considered an "old maid" if she didn't marry young.

But since the 1960s, marrying young has been discouraged. One of the main reasons is that women are encouraged to have a career before marrying. And men are encouraged to have a career in place before wedding. But one of the main reasons teenagers are discouraged from marrying young is that most of them simply aren't prepared for marriage.

Evidence of their lack of preparation is the fact that divorce rates and domestic violence skyrocket in couples who marry prior to the age of 24. According to a study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics, "the divorce rate is highest among men age 20-24 years and women age 15-19 years."

Prior to 1965, the divorce rate was only 2-3%. Now it's largely accepted to be about 50%. If people married younger prior to that date and stayed married, what is it that kids today don't have that their ancestors did?

It isn't a lack of desire. Believe it or not, one study found that 84% of today's young singles between the ages of 17 and 23 support getting married young -- and many were seriously considering it. Another study showed that they aren't just considering it... they're doing it. During the 1990s, the number of married teenagers in the U.S. went up by almost 50%.

Kids want to get married. And you have to assume they want their marriages to survive -- at least at the outset. So what is it that's missing?

Obviously, the sexual revolution of the 1960s had a major impact on relationships. Instead of developing deep, lasting relationships, people are now in relationships for their own pleasure. They don't understand how to "consider others as more important than themselves."

But the real missing link, even among Christian young people (who have the same divorce rate as non-Christians), is that most of them have been trained by the world to solve problems selfishly. It's a "look out for #1" attitude... or get as much as you can. Which creates even bigger problems. Children simply aren't taught how to solve problems biblically. So when they get married, and the inevitable problems arise, their marriages are doomed.

On the other hand, a child that's trained to solve problems according to God's Word, which includes looking out for the interests of others, has a much better chance of having a long-lasting marriage -- regardless of how old they are when they get married.
About the Author
Steve Kroening writes for Success magazine and also publishes Wisdom's Edge. You can get Biblical tips on health, finance, relationships, parenting, and success, delivered to your email inbox every week. Simply visit http://www.wisdomsedge.com and sign up for this free e-zine.
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