While getting ready for bed today, I came to realize two things. First, I haven't posted in months; and second, I should have written about today's topic when I first started this blog. I don't necessarily want to call this post a rant (that's much too harsh of a word) so instead I'm simply saying its my opinions for everyone to see.
When it first was publically announced that my fiancé and I were getting married, we were met with two reactions. The first was your typical: "Congratulations! So happy for you two!" but the second, and only slightly less reoccurring reaction was somewhere along the lines of: "You're pretty young to be getting married." While I realize that the standards of most American people today typically suggest marriage in the early to mid-twenties, I was still surprised to get that second reaction so often.
So yes, to most, my fiancé and I are a bit young to be getting married. But, I'd like to shed some light on this situation. When you're in a long and serious relationship with someone who takes the military as their career, especially those in the front lines, you tend to value your time with them a whole lot more. The infantry's job is to be on the front lines of the action, and usually their jobs tend to have the highest mortality rate. I hate to say it, but its true. My fiancé's job is extremely dangerous and when he gets deployed, there will not be a day that I do not worry about his safety.
For many of the men in the military who fight on or close to the front lines, their age of marriage tends to be quite a bit younger than everyone else's'. For instance, where you may consider getting married at 24 or 25, a soldier or marine who is neck deep in the action would probably chose to get married at 19 or 20 instead. When your job could cost you your life, your love for someone tends to be very deep. Speaking from experience, my fiancé and I value every chance we get to see one another. After all, we only see one another every six months.
Now, here is where my opinions are going to get a little heavier. I hate having people react negatively to my upcoming nuptials. While I realize that they're allowed to have their own opinions, I still don't enjoy hearing it. The marriage of young military personnel to their significant others is a choice they more than earned to make. I understand if some do not understand because they're not close to or in the situation, but for those who are, its extremely difficult. After all, they give up everything for the country, they damn well deserve to be with the one person in the world who makes them happy.
Now, let me set something straight. Yes, you have the right to say I'm wrong. I'm fully aware that everyone has the right to freedom of speech. But guess what? Take a second to think about who it is that makes that right to freedom possible for you. That's right. It's those same soldiers who are making adult choices at 19. If they're old enough to fight and die for their country and the freedom that it treasures so heavily, then they're old enough to get married at whatever age they choose.
I will admit that before I met my fiancé, I too thought it was crazy to get married before the age of 21. But, being with a man in the military has taught me a lot and in many ways, has nearly forced me to grow up more quickly. I actually didn't mind this since I've always a sort of old soul. But, this lifestyle isn't for everyone. Admittedly, I do not think that everyone could handle the amount of commitment, effort, time and worry that a military spouse has to endure.
I once read somewhere online that military girlfriends are just wives in the waiting; after all, no one would go through this kind of distance and struggle if they weren't in it for the long haul. Honestly, I totally agree with that. It's been hard to go from seeing my fiancé everyday to only once every six months for a couple of weeks at most, but we make it work because in the end, we won't have to be apart nearly as much one day.
So again, I realize that some of you may think that what I'm saying here is stupid and you may think I'm just a young girl about to make the biggest mistake of her life. And you know what? That's okay. Go ahead and have your opinions. Hell, voice them if you wish. But, remember that the soldier who I'm marrying is one of the thousands that fights for that freedom of speech that you simply throw around.