I can relate to the couple in the interview - everybody's reaction to finding out that we are getting married and our age is always the same, "Oh my god!! But you guys are so young!" People have this general idea that getting married at a young age restricts your freedom, you'll never be able to travel, you won't be able to have a chance to get the career you want to have and you won't get to 'experience' life (whatever that means, I think how you choose to experience life is a highly personal thing!)
It's true, we are young compared to the national average and there are certain disadvantages to getting married young - life experience is at a minimum, Zac will still be studying full time for 6 months so only one us will be working full time. We haven't got established careers and we'll be moving out, getting married and living with someone new for the first time in our lives.
Not to mention babies. They just absolutely freak me out. How many methods of contraception can you use at any given point in time? I'll let you know.
That being said, we have been very careful about this decision, we knew we wanted to get married about 2.5 seconds into our first conversation but we waited 3 years because we knew that we wanted to be sure about this person, about how we worked together. We wanted to share a lot of views about all sorts of topics and we wanted to get past that 'honeymoon' phase in dating and have some real doozies of arguments so we could see how we would act under pressure.
We started working on our relationship, talking about topics we would never thought to have talked on before** expectations about what role we would take in a marriage/household management situation, discovering what we bring to our relationship and celebrating our differences rather than trying to make a copy of ourselves.
We have had pre-marital counseling, we discovered some things that we are very strong on, some things that aren't so strongly developed** and why. Talking with an complete stranger with whom we could be comfortable sharing everything, was so refreshing and hearing a different perspective (while it wasn't always right for us) was challenging and fun.
I think there are some very definite advantages to getting married young. I think it's great to move out together into a new house and develop patterns of living that involve another person - it helps that we aren't so independent and stuck in our preferred method of running a household, we get to make those sort of decisions together. Another thing is that we will have a combined income while we are still young. Sure, we might not make the wisest of financial decision but we'll save a heap too. Travelling together is something we're both looking forward to - I prefer to be with someone I know when I experience new things - no matter whether it's NYC or camping at Margaret River. I'm sure there are other benefits, but this is already a long post!
You can watch the interview here, don't worry - it's not very long and the psychologist makes such a funny face when she thinks the camera isn't recording ;)
**Obviously, we're talking about babies and parenting here. ugh.