Teenage Marriage

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Teen Marriage

Teen marriage has been a growing phenomenon over recent decades, with marriage rates among teens soaring: in the 1990’s the teen marriage rate swelled 50%, reversing an adolescent marriage decline that had been on the fall for nearly 30 years (Chan). Marriage is still somewhat uncommon among teenagers, however nearly 4.5 out of every 100 teenagers between the ages of 14 and 19 are married (Chan). Teenage marriage is a large issue because of the intellectual, economic and mental toll it takes on its advocates. Married teens are more likely to drop out of high school and have lower incomes than those who get married at a mature age. Also, teens are more likely to be divorced from their wedlock partners within 15 years of being married at an adolescent age than those who get married older (Stritof). Teenage marriage is an unhealthy decision and should not be allowed for the safety of the juveniles’ future. Teenagers who get married typically drop out of high school within a year of getting hitched. This is mostly due to the stress that marriage causes a relationship when getting wedded as an adolescent, also because most teenage marriages are often forced due to the ever-growing problem of teen pregnancy. 31% of women who get married in their teens end up living at poverty level later in their life because of their decisions to get married and drop out of high school, thus not earning enough of an education to keep a decent, well-paying job (Dahl). Similarly, a woman who drops out of high school in general is 11% more likely to be considered “poor” than a woman who receives at least her high school diploma (Dahl). Education takes a major toll when an adolescent couple gets married, because of fiscal reasons. Typically, the married teens are fiscally independent from their parents if they are living on their own. Without a formal degree, their income does not leave money for a high school and especially a college education, particularly if the couple has a child (Dahl). Education, as many are aware, is one of the distinct most important investments a person can make in their life, and when marriage or babies happen, a bachelors degree, an associates degree and in many cases a high school diploma are not attainable. Not only do the teens who are married lack an education in general, but they also lack an education in fundamentals of being married, such as: maintaining a home and practicing safe intercourse. Of those teens who are married, many report tying the knot with their spouse because they would like to move out of their parents house for more freedom and less restrictions. However, those that move out, soon move back into their parents’ home after realizing that living on their own requires much more responsibility and work—this means that the married teens are now living separately or in a house with one of the teen’s parents—causing major stress on their relationship (Silvers). Sex education also is a major flaw in teenage marriages. Most teens who get pregnant attempt to marry, and thus have already started an unhealthy relationship, others do not stay monogamous and end up contracting sexually transmitted diseases or infections from their partners (Silvers). Teen marriage in relation to sexual education is a large issue when studying the intellectual effects that matrimony has on those who should not be married. With the lack of an education, the teen couple struggle financially. Most teenage couples live around the government recognized “poverty level”—which is defined as having a yearly income for one person under $11,161—and must survive off of minimum wage jobs and food stamps (“What Are Poverty Thresholds and Poverty Guidelines?”). This is mainly due to the lack of formal education that teens receive before and during their marriage. Teens who get married are typically in some kind of schooling, whether it be a high school or college education. The likelihood of continuing...
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