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Back in the early 90s, when I was in my early 20s, a friend’s wife, who was from England, surprised me by saying that in England marriage was out of fashion.

She went on to explain in a largely agnostic culture, marriage was viewed as, “just a piece of paper.”

Couples preferred to shack up and just declare themselves together versus getting married. When it didn’t work out, the couple simply split without the need for lawyers and a messy divorce.

At the time I could not imagine how that would work, maybe if there weren’t children involved, but the whole thing seemed very noncommittal to me.

Now 20 years later and I am seeing a similar trend in the United States. I am not sure the reasoning is the same, although living together without marriage is now common and even encouraged.  Here I think it is more driven by girls being told, “Don’t settle down too soon.”

Ironically, the couples I do see marrying are often each other’s only significant partner, high school sweethearts, if you will. They are usually in their early to mid 20s, many report being together nine years or longer.

As I spoke to one such couple a few weeks ago, both exceptionally attractive and he clearly a natural alpha,  I found myself wondering if these would be the only couples of their generation to marry? (Her dad was beaming at the future son-in-law, obviously very happy with his 9+ Supermodel-pretty daughter’s pick.)

First love is strong, especially so for a male. I think the advice to young girls to, “explore” may not be good advice. She may never again find such absolute devotion. Do they tell her that, too?

I suppose we will only truly know in many decades what becomes of these young lovers versus those who wait.

What do you think? Please share in the comments!