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Best Age to Get Married According to Various Cultures

Love, security, and age are, perhaps, three fundamental areas for marriage. But if everything is clear with love, it is either there, or it is not, and with security is also more or less clear since the marriage of convenience is a quite widespread thing, then everything is not so simple with the question of age to get married.

No one will ever give an accurate and unambiguous answer to questions like, "What’s a good age to get married" and "What age should you get married?" Each couple has its own answer to these questions, and only stubborn statistics says that girls prefer to marry at the age of 20-25, and usually choose men at least 3-6 years older as their husbands.

best age to get married

Average Age to Get Married in the Western World

Nowadays, the average age to get married varies greatly in different countries. Trying to figure out the most suitable age for marriage, we often access scientific data. No wonder that before making the decision to contract the marriage some of us google the request, “What age do most people get married” and especially in rich and developed countries. The first thing that catches the eye is the ratio between the welfare of a country and the age at which its citizens marry. For example, residents of northern countries, such as Finland and Sweden, usually do not marry before 30 years, while in Central and North Africa young people are determined to make choices by the age of 20. According to statistics released by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, young people in Europe are getting married later. Thus, in Western and Northern Europe, young people are in no hurry to tie themselves to marriage. Over the past two decades, the average age of first marriage in these countries has increased by five years. European men and women start families after 30 years.

UN experts explain the late marriages by the desire of young people to get an education, a good job and to provide themselves financially before starting a family. They draw attention to the fact that recently in Europe as a whole, there has been a tendency not only to postpone marriage or engagement but also to reduce the proportion of marital unions. An increase in the age of marriage led to rather dramatic consequences. So, in the US today less than half of the adult citizens are officially married. In the 1960s, this figure was 72%.

When compared to Eastern Europe, the age of marriage began to increase after the 1990s, but so far it does not exceed an average of 22–23 years for women and 25–26 years for men.

Legal Age to Get Married in Different Countries

In the XVIII-XIX centuries in many countries, the church established a marriageable age. 13 years for women and 15 years for men were a good age to get married. It was believed that at this age, young people are already mature for marital life, and since the boys grow up later, then they need to marry later. According to the Priceonomics portal, today people marry much later than 20 years ago, and some prefer not to marry at all. However, the age of first marriage may vary significantly across countries. The country you live in depends directly on how long you will live a bachelor life.

Scotland: 16 years

In almost all European countries, you can get married from the age of 18. But there are exceptions, for example, Scotland, which for centuries has been considered a paradise for lovers. As well as now, it was allowed to marry from the age of 16 without parental consent, while in the 18th and 19th centuries, parents in England could forbid their children to marry before the age of majority, that was considered to be 21 years. Until 1940, there was a provision in which it was enough for the lovers to declare their desire to become spouses in front of witnesses, and the marriage was considered to be contracted. And such a marriage was valid in England.

whats a good age to get marriedUnited States: 15–21 years

In the United States, the marriage age is different and is determined by the laws of each state. In most cases, the average age to get married in the US is 18 years old for both men and women, and 16 years with parental consent. But there are exceptions. For example, in Georgia, young people can get married at 15 with parental consent, and at 16 years without their consent, if they are expecting a child. In the state of New Hampshire, with the consent of the parents, the legal age to marry for girls is 13 years, and 14 years for guys. In Massachusetts, the age to get married is the highest - up to 21 years old, it is impossible to tie the knot without the permission of parents. But the lowest limit for marriage with the consent of the parents is not defined. In practice, they allow families to be created for young men from the age of 17, and not earlier than from 15 years for girls.

China: 20 and 22 years

China has the highest marital age in the world: 20 years for women and 22 years for men. But this limit has been set relatively recently since the modern law on marriage entered into force on January 1, 1981. It is believed that by this age people can become quite independent both emotionally and materially and make an informed choice. In medieval China, there was a completely opposite situation. Then, according to the law, 20 years was the age limit at which a girl could marry. Men could marry before 30 years. Such were the views of Confucius about the best age to marry. Girls could get married, being 13 years old, and boys, being 15 years old.

India: 18 and 21 years

Now Indian girls can officially enter into marriage from the age of 18, and young men from the age of 21. But it was not always so. Since ancient times, the tradition of child marriage has flourished in India. The 1921 census revealed that there were more than 600 girls already married under the age of one. The 2001 census showed that 3 million Indian women became mothers before they turned 15. One explanation of the tradition of early marriage is that in the 11th-century, Muslim conquerors came to India. They considered unmarried Indus as spoils of war. Fearing for the fate of their daughters, their parents began marrying them in infancy. Then the conquerors left, but the tradition remained. Now there is an economic explanation. Child marriage is actively practiced by the lower social strata. By marrying daughters at an early age, parents reduce the costs of their maintenance since the husband’s family is in charge of the young wife from that moment.

What Is the Best Age to Get Married?

If answering the question, “What age can you get married?” isn’t so difficult, then trying to determine the perfect age to get married is quite a dilemma. “Love for all ages,” they say at first and then conduct surveys and social experiments to show the difficulties occurring in marriages. Hence, there are several types of families, depending on the age of the marriage and the difference in age between the spouses.

Early marriage. Of course, such an important issue as marriage should be approached carefully and thoroughly. And society rightly believes that such decisions are capable of making people mature. Therefore, the marriage of people aged 18–20, sometimes 23 years, is often perceived as something premature, frivolous. According to statistics, it is early marriages that are most vulnerable. But, on the other hand, at an early age, feelings and emotions are extremely strong. Love at this age is notable for arrogance and recklessness, and youthful maximalism sweeps away all obstacles on the way to a loved one. And there are so many couples who have proven that they can live happily and safely all their lives together, from youthful years and into extreme old age. But, nevertheless, if you are “impatient” to get married at the age of 18, we advise you to think it over carefully. And preferably without emotions. Remember that early marriages tend to fall apart in the very first year.

“Golden age" marriage. Age from about 23 to 26-28 years is considered almost the most suitable for marriage. It should be noted that girls grow up earlier than boys, but by the age of 25 the physical and, importantly, the psychological difference between the peers of both sexes almost disappears. This age is the heyday of man, and it is most favorable for childbirth. For men, this is the time of the best physical form, endurance. By the age of 23-25, young people, as a rule, finish their studies and begin their professional careers. They have already decided what they want to do in life, and are ready for creating the family. Youthful maximalism gives way to an adult outlook on life.

Late marriage. At the age of 30 and over, a wedding is already a deliberate, a hundred times weighted decision. Often at this age, people get married not for the first time, and they understand perfectly well what surprises life “after the altar” prepares for them.

Very late marriage. Perhaps, it is precise to our grandparents that we owe the popular expression mentioned above. Such marriages are contracted at the age of 50, 60, 70 and even 80 years! And although at this age, love for partners means more support and care for each other and not fire in which all worldly adversity burns - feelings are so strong that the young can’t help being envy.

Summing up, we would like to note one thing. Despite the fact that the question of age for marriage is serious enough, you should not set yourself the goal of building relationships in terms of the best age to get married from your point of view. People are so different that the criterion of age, in fact, objectively gives only relative characteristics. In any relationship, everywhere and always, you need to listen to the two main advisers. And this is not a mom and a friend, not a dad or an uncle! It is your heart and your head. And these comrades are radically different since the heart is hot, and the head is cold. Therefore, their solutions will have an optimum temperature. Despite the data of various statisticians, psychologists and journalists are inclined to the point of view that the best time for marriage is determined individually.

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