7 Surprising Things Couples Who Marry Too Early Have In Common, According To Therapists
Marrying quickly is the biggest leap a whirlwind romance can take. But people who marry quickly aren't clueless to what they're doing. From insecurity to the ability to move on faster than others, people who marry too quickly have a bit more in common than you may think.
For some, falling in love and getting married soon after is a natural conclusion. All sorts of circumstances might make this necessary. Others may simply find the idea of marrying someone they've just met alluring, since it fits into a narrative of true love.
Many others, however, have more complicated motivations for getting married. These individuals don't necessarily share outside pressures to get married (like financial or familial ones), but rather have put the pressure on themselves. "Sometimes, we believe that relationship problems will resolve themselves with marriage, but the opposite is usually true," Dr. Jess O’Reilly, host of the @SexWithDrJess Podcast, tells Bustle. "[...] It’s important to address issues as they arise — regardless of whether you’re dating, living together or married." While many relationships that start as whirlwind romances last, it's more likely to be because they follow the proven predictors that a marriage will last, rather than because they got married.
Not all qualities that drive people to marry too soon are negative, but they do provide some insight into how a romance can become so serious, so quickly.
Here are seven surprising things couples who marry too early might have in common, according to therapists.
1. Seeing A Narrow Window For Having Kids
One common thread among couples who get married quickly is a feeling that there is a "window" for having kids, and that marriage will help them avoid any future time pressure. These couples may also feel that they are only comfortable having children inside marriage.
"Many couples who are just meeting and getting together [...might start] to feel the pressure to get married and have kids," David Bennett, counselor and relationship expert at Double Trust Dating, tells Bustle. Many fast-tracked couples may feel this way, and opt for the security of marriage early on to then have children.
Getting married too quickly is not always as a result of outside pressures. For many who marry early, hopeless romanticism is at play.
"A lot of people who get married quickly are idealistic and believe love can conquer everything, even if the evidence strongly suggests otherwise," Bennett says. A common tendency to believe a gut feeling exists among a lot of these idealistic couples.
Another common thread among those who marry too quickly may be a form of resilience — a knowledge that they will have the strength to bounce back if the relationship crumbles.
Another way to describe this resilience is these individuals having the ability to recover. "[People who marry too quickly] don't fear failure the same way most do," Kimberly Friedmutter, CHt, tells Bustle. "Recovery is always an option [for them] if a mistake is made. This person sees recovery as a part of life, not a threat or downside to a mistake. They act and recover time and time again." While not all couples who marry quickly share this trait, a lot of them may share an ability to bounce back unlike others who wait a bit longer.
4. Low Self-Esteem
Not all couples who marry early have low self-esteem, but being unsure of yourself, and, in turn, insecure in your relationship, may be a common trait among those who marry too quickly.
"Low self-esteem is huge risk factor for individuals rushing into a relationship," therapist Brie Shelly of Activate Wellness Solutions, tells Bustle. People with this common risk factor may be more likely to marry people who aren't perfect for them.
5. Susceptibility To Peer-Pressure
Those who get married early may be more likely to be those who are influenced by peer-pressure, or feel the need to follow the same life paths as their friends.
"My experience is that many people get married too quickly because their friends are doing it," Bennett says. "There is a lot of pressure to not be the 'only unmarried friend' or not be the friend who isn't planning a wedding while everyone else's lives seem to be consumed with wedding planning." While some may dive into marriage while their friends stay single, many of the couples who rush to the altar are those who feel the need to lead lives similar to their friends'.
Another common thread among couples who marry too quickly — perhaps with the wrong person, or perhaps before things have really developed — is loneliness, and a desire to mend it through a relationship.
"Loneliness is another risk factor," Shelly says. Shelly adds that she personally had a client who lost family members and then ended up getting married to someone they'd known for three weeks. While not all cases are this extreme (and not all individuals getting married quickly are lonely), this tendency may reflect a need to fill the gap in a person's life that they are currently feeling.
Impulsivity is a relatively common personality trait. And for those who marry too quickly, their fast marriage often is not the first major impulsive decision they've made.
"Impulsivity is a big [common thread]," Shelly says. "I've seen countless clients rush into relationships without significant thought on whether or not the individual is a good match." For those who are used to relying largely on gut feeling, a fast marriage may seem perfectly natural.
While there are almost endless reasons why couples may marry before they're ready, therapists have discovered a handful of common traits among these couples. From idealism to insecurity, these traits affect way more than these individuals' relationships, and may explain how they feel ready to get married so soon after meeting someone.