A debate is raging between those who believe young couples should seek to get married and those who see no problem with cohabiting before saying “I do.” Brittany Wong at the Huffington Post called it “the obvious, cost-efficient” next step for any relationship.
But is that really true? Surely, any level-headed person will want to know where a relationship is going once it gets to the serious stage of contemplating moving in together. Should it really be such a practical and clinical decision as “saving on bills?”
Wong does offer some good words of advice on the issue. “Sure, moving in together is a weighty decision, but it shouldn’t feel like a huge gamble on your part,” she writes. “If you’re apprehensive about it and need constant reassurance from your partner that this isn’t going to work out in the end, you may want to go with your instincts.”
Of course, as in any big life decision, you should be careful. But why is marriage never mentioned? Is it so traditional, so old-fashioned, that it has been rendered irrelevant, outdated and unnecessary when thinking of moving in together? You’d imagine that alongside the sharing of living space, possessions and a bed, you’d consider committing yourselves to each other in a life-long union.
Well, Christian speaker and model Leah Darrow gave something of a brilliant response to the article on Twitter:
OR here are my 6 signs it’s too soon to move in together: ??
1.He won’t marry you first.
2. He won’t marry you first.
3. He won’t marry you first.
4. He won’t marry you first.
5. He won’t marry you first.
6. He won’t marry you first.#cohabitationISNOTliberation https://t.co/AckIfgIwM6
— Leah Darrow (@leahdarrow) March 2, 2018
Serious relationships are inevitable for most of us – but they should never be rushed into. Plus, studies show that young adults are more likely to find themselves going through a divorce if they are rash in picking the person who is to become their future husband or wife.
Through her research, sociologist Arielle Kupperberg discovered “that the longer couples waited to make that first serious commitment, the better their chances for marital success,” according to The Atlantic.
“The research shows that at 23—the age when many people graduate from college, settle into adult life and begin becoming financially independent—the correlation with divorce dramatically drops off.”
“For so long, the link between cohabitation and divorce was one of these great mysteries in research,” Kuperberg says. “What I found was that it was the age you settled down with someone, not whether you had a marriage license, that was the biggest indicator of a relationship’s future success.”
As traditional values have been ditched for progressive liberal norms, cohabitation has increased by a whopping 900 percent over the last 50 years. Census data from 2012 indicates that some 7.8 million couples are living together without getting married, compared to 2.9 million in 1996.
Of course, as Christians, we see marriage in a very different light. It is a God-honoring covenant between a man and a woman, and one that should be upheld as sacred and unique. In Christian marriage, we join with another person in a holy union – and it is pleasing and good in the eyes of God, and the numbers appear to be once again confirming this.