Washington, Nov 29 College students think 25 is the “right age” to wed, while parents feel it is a little too soon, says a new national study.
“The assumption has been that the younger generation wants to delay marriage and parents are hassling them about when they would get married,” said Brian Willoughby, professor at Brigham Young University, who led the study.
“We actually found the opposite, that the parental generation is showing the ‘slow down’ mind-set more than the young adults,” Willoughby was quoted in The Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.
Willoughby and his co-authors in Brigham School of Family Life gathered data from 536 college students and their parents from five college campuses around the country. They found that hesitation is consistent across the gender divide, according to a Brigham statement.
One of the driving forces behind parents’ restraint is the feeling that their children should get an education first.
While they generally feel marriage is important, parents think the “right age” is one year older than what their children say.
“I think parents have a lot of fear for their kids that makes them want to delay the transitions to adulthood,” Willoughby said.
According to census data, the median age for first marriages is 27.
Willoughby says that what people say is the “right age” generally comes a few years before the actual marriage age.
Though Brigham students weren’t in Willoughby’s sample, the university’s own records show about 25 percent of its students are married.
Willoughby said that young adults typically marry about two years younger than their peers nationally and have risen in sync with trends.