The irony of marriage in the South

Why is there such an emphasis on marrying young in the Bible Belt?

young marriageI find it highly amusing that everyone in the South assumes that there is something wrong with a person if she chooses not to marry before the age of 30. Is marrying at 18 or 20 the better solution?

The Bible Belt leads the country in divorce!

Many factors contribute to the failure of marriage … income, race, religion, education, family history, geography and age. Did you see that? I said age! I won’t even try to address how the others play a role since I am already treading on dangerous ground.

Where am I getting my information?

Bible BeltI looked in several locations trying to find accurate divorce statistics by state. With a lot of unreliable sources out there, I was skeptical with everything I came across. I eventually found the information I needed from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (interesting location for statistics on divorce … I won’t even ask!).

Who wins this competition?

I am sure that it is of no surprise to anyone that the state that allows Elvis to guide the wedding ceremony is also the state that leads the nation in divorce. Second on the list is Arkansas!

Here are the top 10 …

1. Nevada
2. Arkansas
3. Oklahoma
4. West Virginia
5. Wyoming
6. Idaho
7. Kentucky
8. Tied … Alabama, Florida
9. Mississippi
10. Colorado

Is anyone shocked to hear that more than half of those states are right here in the Bible Belt? I didn’t think so!

This is a long way of saying …

say no to marriageI am not ready to marry. Quit trying to shove it down my throat! Feel free to control some other aspect of my being, but I am tired of people saying … “hmmm … I wonder what is wrong with her.” I will get married when I am ready! The truth is … I am not willing to settle … maybe the rest of you fools are!

What is with all the control freaks in the South anyway?

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13 Responses to The irony of marriage in the South

  1. Ang Henson says:

    You should never have to settle either! Divorce happens because people settle, and later realize that they are unhappy (well, that’s not always the case, but it’s a big factor I’m sure).

    And why wouldn’t people get divorced at alarmingly fast rates; it’s so easy! You should have to jump through hoops to be granted a divorce; maybe then, people wouldn’t jump into a marriage so quickly!

    Although, I will have to say, I don’t know many people “jumping” into a marriage anymore….Most of our friends are actually single/dating. The ones that are married were all married later. :)

  2. Which friends of ours are single and dating? And, if you say the ones that are divorced that will only prove my point :)

    I should also clarify that divorce can be necessary and no one should be stuck in a mentally and/or physically abusive relationship. And, not everyone that marries young gets divorced. Obviously, many people that marry after 30 also divorce. I just think that waiting for when a person is ready and the brain has finished growing (after the age of 25) has some definite advantages. On the other hand, if both parties are willing to grow together and not divorce at the first sign of conflict then age is not even a factor.

    Angela, you are so right! It is way too easy to divorce … no one tries anymore!

  3. Ang Henson says:

    nah, I can only (honestly) think of one person that is divorced…the rest that are single/dating have yet to take the leap :)

  4. Tina says:

    Well, I for one, can say waiting to get married later in life is a good thing. I speak only from my own experience.

    There was no way I would get married when I was 25. I was to busy having fun. Although I dated the same person all of that time it was good to have my “independence” while I was in my 20s.

    Now that I am approaching 40 and been married for a little over a year I am glad I did it that way. I think if people wait to get married until somewhere between 33-40, chances of staying married are better. People settle down by then and don’t want to be in the party or single scene anymore. By the late 30s people are ready for the calmness of married life.

    So, stay single until mid to late 30s that’s my 2 cents.

  5. Adam Moore says:

    i just thought that married life is the happiest point of my life.

    • Well, Adam, I am glad to hear that. I am not opposed to marriage … just opposed to settling for the wrong man. I don’t feel like there should be time constraints placed on a person to marry up. I only want to marry once, and you better believe that I will turn down any request I receive until I know it is right.

  6. Leon Murray says:

    Married life is the happiest part of a persons life if the wife and husband really love each other.

  7. Tea Dress says:

    i think that married life is the most special time where a man and woman shares each others blessings and commitment.

  8. Pingback: Is there a right age to get married? | My Retail Heaven Magazine

  9. Silly Girl says:

    This post made me smile. I’m a university student in Arkansas. I’m one of less than a handful of girls I know that are not married or engaged, and all of my family and married friends bring this topic up.

    My boyfriend and I have been dating for over four years. My father calls my boyfriend son in law (not my mother because she doesn’t care for marriage and believes I should wait and not be pressured. p.s. I love my mom). My sister has my nephew call him uncle, she refers to him as her brother-in-law. My best friend is fairly religious. She constantly asks me if it seems like my boyfriend is going to propose or not. At some point, I was badgering my boyfriend about ‘the question’ when he said, “Why do you want to get married?”

    I didn’t know why. I just knew I was supposed to. It was so creepy to think about how brainwashed I was. I wanted to enter into a life changing and serious responsibility, when I’m not even religious or otherwise inclined, just because I was supposed to do it.

    I know they all mean well, and only ask because they love me, but I have snapped on a few occasions and thrown out the “We don’t have any plans to get married.” (Much to some of their horror)

    I’m not staunchly anti-marriage, but I empathize with you. I don’t think I’m emotionally or fiscally ready to make such a commitment. Even so, I really don’t see the point of marriage. I would rather continue cohabiting and maybe have a child in a few years when I think I want to explore that avenue. Until then, it would be helpful if people would back the fuck off and mind their own business.

    I don’t harass them and say, “Why are you married? You fight so much, wouldn’t it be better if he/she wasn’t holding you back? Why couldn’t you just cohabit if you love each other so much? Do you think a ring will keep him/her faithful this time? Why bother with the headache? For prestige from people you don’t give a damn about?” I leave them alone.

    I acknowledge that they are possibly happy where they are and do not try to plant seeds of doubt mixed in with my own feelings of how I want my life to be. I wish they would grant the same courtesy.

    • Thank you for stopping by my blog! I am happy to see someone else who agrees with me. I am not against marriage either, but I feel like society puts pressure on Southern girls. I have so many people in my life who think it is their mission to set me up with every single guy they know, because they think the reason why I am single is because I can’t find someone on my own. Don’t get me wrong … I do want love and romance, but I refuse to settle for the first piece of crap that lands on my doorstep. These blind dates don’t even make sense. I can’t figure out how people think that I would work with some of the people that they match me with. It is ridiculous. What about me says that I want a fat man without a job? Or, how about an ignorant redneck who dresses like a homeless man? Just because I am getting older doesn’t mean that I am willing to settle for anything less than extraordinary. If anything, my standards get higher the older I get as I fine tune exactly what I want in a man.

      So, Arkansas was number 2! That should be enough to convince you :) The truth is that if you guys are really meant to end up together, marriage will not change the outcome. You can wait as long as you like at the frustration of everyone who loves you. Only marry when you know it is right! Never settle … only do as you feel. And, it is true that a ring doesn’t keep men from dipping their wick in another woman’s flame.

  10. John says:

    Kentucky and Oklahoma are not part of the “South”, and Florida is not Culturally

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