Opinion: On "23 Things to Do Instead of Getting Engaged Before You're 23"

Jan 24, 2014

A few weeks ago, my Facebook news feed was bombarded with shares of “23 Things to Do Instead of Getting Engaged Before You’re 23.” In case you missed it, here is the original link: 23 Things to Do Instead of Getting Engaged before You're 23. I’ve never been angrier with anything I’ve read online, so I figured I’d get this rant out of my system.

            I’d like to preface this by saying that I don’t know where I stand on getting married young. In fact, I clicked on the link because I was genuinely open to ideas to try out before turning 23. Upon reading the article, however, I was severely disappointed.

            This article is listed as a personal opinion, but it stopped being just that the moment this ignorant girl put down her peers in order to make herself feel better. This girl likes to pretend that she sees some holy light that all of her inexperienced baby-popping friends fail to acknowledge. In reality, her immature approach and closed mind prove that she has no business telling people what to do.

            With the Millennials, I have begun to- as she put it- notice a common thread- we tend to actively look for ways to screw up and label them as “finding ourselves”. And if there comes a moment when our friends, God forbid, figure themselves out before we do, well, it’s okay. We can just judge them and criticize them for having the adult thing down. Besides, they’ll get married and spit out babies in no time. THEN WE CAN FAT-SHAME THEM!

            Don’t get me wrong, I am beyond grateful to be living in a world where screwing up is allowed and even encouraged, but some people are abusing this privilege. When did it become ok to shame those brave enough to start life alongside another human being and celebrate those who YOLO through it without a care in the world?

            This Millenials’ rights advocate lists inexperience as the reason young couples choose marriage. She seems to believe that as soon as you tie the knot, your life is over. There’s housekeeping and pregnancy written all over your forehead. She seems to believe that colleges and grad schools don’t accept married people, and travel visas are awarded based on your marital status. She seems to believe that you have to screw a lot of frogs before you come across a prince. She seems to believe that young people use marriage as a safety blanket rather than as what it is intended to be- a manifestation of love.

            But maybe, just maybe, some people decide to go through life’s steps quicker than others. Maybe they’ve experienced more in their 23 years of life than she has. Maybe they’ve found themselves, then found somebody they want to share their lives with- ya know, get passports with, adopt a pet with, eat mad amounts of Nutella with, and even hang out naked in front of a window with. Meanwhile, she can go about her life toying with people’s emotions and waiting to see when it will blow up in her face….because that’s what experienced, highly educated risk-taking people do.

            The bottom line is, there is nothing wrong with her for being single. There is nothing wrong with her married Facebook friends for being married. There is nothing wrong with anybody, as long as they’re productive members of society and they choose to live their lives in ways that work best for them.

P.S. Saying “I do” is probably a much higher risk than anything on her irrelevant list. 


  1. Thank you Ada! I've been seeing her stupid post everywhere and it's driving me crazy! I actually was ranting about it just this morning to Brad, since after having gotten engaged before we're 23, we've been told multiple times that we are too young. People are different, and personally I would rather get married young then eat an entire jar of Nutella. Hands down. But if an entire jar of Nutella is someone's thing, do it.

  2. Agreed! I think it's really up to the individual to decide his or her own life, whether that be marrying before 23 or after 23, it's their choice!


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