By Hannah Brzozowski
It has become the norm to move in with your partner before getting married. The reasoning seems to be that you need to "try it before you buy it." It's the big step before getting engaged and it's portrayed all over TV and movies that this is how you "adult" correctly.
How else would you know that you actually want to spend the rest of your life with this person, unless you live together first and find out all of their quirks and messy habits. At first glance, this can make sense. But I think, it then starts to beg the question: What's the point of marriage to begin with? If you can live with the love of your life, have kids and live happily ever after, then why would anyone get married? Especially if 50% of marriages end in divorce anyways.
Let's explore this for a second! Here are the 6 reasons why you should get married.
Talk is Cheap.
I've heard so many stories of people who said they would be together "forever." They tell each other that on their second date and then are heartbroken a couple of months later when that doesn't come true. Words seem to be empty these days. People make plans and break them constantly.
We grow our integrity by making and keeping commitments. That is the first way for people to trust you. So, when you are wanting to be with someone forever, then why not sign the papers and make it official.
The Sex is Better.
Study after study shows that sex in marriage is better than outside of it! Men and women both are more satisfied with their sex lives if they are married. On top of that, they have sex more often. The reason? I think it's because it's a safe place to be completely intimate - not only physically but emotionally too. You're not wondering - is this person going to leave me? Or am I better than the girl they slept with last week?
Think about the freedom you can have from insecurities to know that you are not being compared to with anyone else.
Marriage Expresses a Great Mystery.
In Ephesians 5, Paul talks about how marriage represents Jesus and the church. He says: "In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church." In a strong marriage, you are able to show the world how Jesus' relationship to the church acts. The love that Jesus has for his bride, the church, is similar to the way a husband loves his wife. Paul even calls this a mystery that he can't quite explain.
The Odds of Infidelity go Down.
According to "Why Marriage is Good For You", men and women who live together before marriage are much more likely to cheat than married men and women. Of course, this is far more than a statistic. These are real stories of real people dealing with serious pain. But why do the odds go down? I think it goes back to the first point - your words mean something. When you stand up in front of your family and friends and committing to this person for the rest of your life, it helps you keep that promise. Of course, adultery still happens in marriage. But, don't you want to at least decrease the odds of experiencing that pain?
You'll be Happier, Richer and Healthier.
On every article I read in preparation to write this, it mentioned that married people are richer overall, happier, and actually live longer. It's truly incredible the blessings that God gives to those who get married.
You Have Someone to Depend on No Matter What.
I can't speak for all marriages but I know mine pretty well. One rule we abide by is to never say the "d" word. By that, I mean divorce. We don't say it in anger or joking. We never mention it. It is not an option for us. When Nick asked my dad before we got married, he said "Do you want to be stuck with her?" This means in the times with butterflies and the times where you scream into a pillow. We're stuck with each other. Some might see this as "unromantic" but in reality it means that we aren't giving up. We will fight for and prioritize our relationship above all others. So, practically, this means when we get in a big fight - I don't wonder - "Is Nick going to leave me?" He doesn't wonder - "Is Hannah thinking about divorce?" In this chaotic and ever changing world, there is such comfort in that (See Matthew 19).
Now, just because I think you should get married, it doesn't mean that you should get married to just anyone or because all your friends are getting married. This is a huge decision that you should pray about, ask for advice from friends, family, and your pastor. Anchor even offers premarital counseling with a world class curriculum to help you walk through this very important step. Please reach out to us if you're interested in this. We'd love to help however we can.
With all of these reasons, I'm mainly speaking to those who are living together before marriage. To those who are single and wanting to get married, I realize that this post could be like a dagger and I hope it doesn't cause you more heartache. I'd love for you to check out this Anchor blog post about singleness.