Why do people get married? Why do couples tie the knot? Why does the natural course of a relationship lead towards a marriage? What are some of the top reasons why people get married? Love, age, location, commitment, social norm, security, family, legal status, peer pressure and more - this post probes some of the most common reasons why partners in a relationship decide to get married.
1) People get married when they are in love
Why do people get married? Love is one of the most straightforward answers. Dating, being in a committed relationship and loving each other till no end may naturally result in marriage. Even partners who have not been in a relationship for a long time may decide to get married just because of the overpowering feeling of love.
2) People get married to seek lifelong commitment
Debates about the redundancy of the institution of marriage have surfaced in many nations. The social fabric of the society may change from time to time however there is little denying that marriage symbolizes everlasting commitment in a relationship.
Whether partners are in a long distance relationship or they live together, they are driven towards marriage as they seek lifelong commitment from each other.
3) Marriage is a commonly accepted social norm
Societal rituals or laws of marriage may vary across cultures and nations but the social ideology of marriage tends to be on a similar plane universally. Across the globe, men and women are expected to find companions and settle down with them once they become adults.
Marriage may be on the cards for some couples just because it may seem like the right thing to do and not because both partners have a driving urge to get married. The social fabric may knowingly or unknowingly play a crucial role in a couple's decision to tie the knot.
4) Fulfilling the wish to have children
Many are known to fancy the idea of having children and a thriving household. Even if one of the partners in a relationship wants kids, that may be reason enough to start the whole discussion about marriage and family which may eventually lead to the couple tying the knot.
Marriage is seen as the founding stone for family life. Getting married is commonly accepted as a gateway to having children and sharing the joys of having a family with a lifetime companion.
5) People get married to gain the legal status of marriage
Besides being a social norm, marriage is also a legal contract between the partners. Within the legal framework, marriage gives rise to responsibilities and liabilities. It also gives relationships a legal status and that is often a core reason why people get married.
6) Age and biological clock make people tie the knot
People are known to start worrying about getting married especially after they cross their mid-thirties. Women tend to think that their biological clocks are ticking away and they must get married soon. Men may tend to think that all the good women may get taken if they don't tie the knot in time.
Age can be a pressing factor for many couples to enter wedlock. Whether it is the worry of difficulty in having kids or not spotting gray hairs too soon, people may choose to get married because they think they are wasting time and growing old.
7) People get married to access the support system of a marriage
Love, admiration, fondness or commitment may not be the only core reasons why people get married. There may be couples who have known each other for a long time and decide to get married because they feel the need to secure a lifelong support system.
Support in this context can be emotional, financial or psychological among others. Sometimes partners trust their gut feeling about each other and promise to be life partners so that they have a shoulder to lean on, a partner to cry with and a friend for life.
8) Peer pressure to get married
Peer pressure can exist in all steps of life and not just in schools, colleges and workplaces. When friends, acquaintances, colleagues or cousins start sending invites to their weddings, couples may feel an increased pressure of getting married.
There can be two kinds of peer pressure that even single people may face from their married friends. Either they are subjected to taunts and feel singled out because they don't have a partner by their side. Or they may start feeling lonely and left out because they can't take part in things that all married people do.
9) Nagging by parents
Ask an attractive single 30 year old woman how many times her father throws up annoying questions about settling down. Ask any eligible bachelor above the age of 30 how many times his mother probes his love life and nags him about getting married.
The nagging of parents may superficially be brushed off but it can passively make someone give marriage another thought, especially if a person is in a relationship already.
10) Marriage can lead to financial security
A passive reason why people get married is to achieve increased overall financial security. It may sound a little strange at the outset but a deeper perspective may reveal marriage as a way of achieving financial security when partners join hands to build their lives together.
When both the partners in a couple are working, monetary advantages may be manifold after marriage. Shouldering added responsibility is likely to passively coax both partners to save more money and treat their finances with foresight.
From increased savings, doubling salaries, perks, tax benefits, allowances and much more, the financial benefits of being in a married relationship are many.
11) Furthering lineage
The importance of lineage or having an heir may differ everywhere but it could be one of the reasons why people to get married, especially in aristocratic and wealthy families in certain cultures. Families may want a child or grandchild to pass on their generational wealth or heirlooms to.
While this context may appear to have little logic from a modern 21st century perspective, lineage and keeping the family name alive may be a plausible reason for millionaires, royal families or other rich and famous people to get married.
12) People may get married to gain residency or citizenship
Couples separated by international borders may see the need to get married quickly to be able to live together in one country.
Immigration and citizenship may not even vaguely cross the mind of an average joe. However getting a partner to move to another country may be extremely difficult without showing legal proof of marriage.
13) Growing old together and the fear of living alone
How will you feel at the thought of living alone all by yourself for the rest of your life? How will you feel if you never have anyone to share your happiness with?
How do you feel about the thought of living the remaining years of your life in solitary? Would you be able to cope up with illness in old age all by yourself?
It is only human to have these questions plague your mind at one stage of your life or another. The fear of living and dying alone could be the reason why marriage is a given in the minds of many people. No matter how debate and discussed the relevance of marriage is, it hasn't ceased to be a means of a sense of security.
14) Arranged marriage
The custom of arranged marriage is known to be still prevalent in many cultures across the globe. An arranged marriage organized by the families of a bride and a groom may be the reason why they tie the knot.
15) Marriage is often a desire and childhood dream
Print and electronic media have immortalized the dreamy image of marriage in romantic movies, TV soaps and other forms that reach out to young girls and boys. Marriage can often be the ultimate dream of a little girl who pictures herself walking down the aisle.
This notion of marriage being the penultimate symbol of eternal love may give rise to dreams and a desire that is unmatched. This desire can drive the urge to get married.
dashingscorpio from Chicago on September 24, 2020:
Some people get married to live out their "romantic fairytale"!
They may have been dreaming about their wedding day since early childhood. This is especially true of little girls and young women. They've been decorating Ken & Barbie's dollhouse and pushing around baby dolls in strollers since they learned to walk.
Some of them later in life have given ultimatums to their boyfriends with regard to either getting married or breaking up. For these women it's not about the commitment or having children because you can have those things without a marriage license.
They want to experience wearing the diamond ring, wedding gown, walking down the aisle to music, being the toast of the ball at their wedding reception among their family, friends, and co-workers. It will be the closest thing for her to feel like a princess!
For some people marriage is just the arbitrary "next step" after having dated or lived together for so long. (Might as well..)
There are others who clearly have their eye on security and by that they mean having access to "legal assets" in the event their mate dies or they split up. As one woman on HP once stated:
"Marriage means a man can't just up and walk away after 10 years without leaving me something to show for it."
While that may be the least romantic thing I've ever heard with regard to marriage we also cannot ignore issues which have arisen when someone is very ill or dies and there are no legal rights.
Your partner's children might ban you from visiting him/her in the hospital since you're not "legally family". The home he bought and shared with you for 20 years or longer reverts back to his children if there were never any legal papers drawn up to say otherwise.
Without having any spousal privileges one may feel powerless in certain scenarios especially if your mate's children dislike you.
Marriage thus becomes a legally binding contract with benefits.
Pham Thi Quy from vietnam on September 21, 2016:
Great hub, thanks pro. Please follow me
MPanta from Lisbon on January 18, 2013:
Great hub, I am married and I completely agree with some of your points.