Venting ahoy

I’m about to graduate from college with a bachelor’s, and I’ll be 30 in a few months. I’ve made friends with a couple of girls that I do extracurricular activities with, and we have a little group that hangs out occasionally, of women varying ages. Some are close to my age, others are 20-21. I look at the younger girls like they’re my younger siblings, and we’ve had a good relationship.

Anyway. I have to keep it in my mind and perspective that they’re still super young and have a lot to learn, and a lot of life changes that will come their way. Two of them in particular are really, really fixated on getting married. I knew of lots of people who were in that same mindset when I was 20-21. The ones that did get married, for the most part, got divorced. The ones that didn’t are, from what I understand, pretty unhappy.

I know there are some people (a very, very few people maybe) who get married young and make it work. It’s just hard for me to imagine tying things up with somebody in a permanent way when you’re that age. For me, 21 was one of the worst years of my life- I had so much shit I was still trying to wrap my head around and understand about myself and the way the world worked.

I don’t know if it’s a raised-in-the-South thing specifically or not... or just something that some young girls get wrapped up in before they get the full gravity of what long term commitment really means, especially with the legal trappings of marriage that make it harder to get out of. I just worry. One in particular reminds me a lot of myself at her age- a lot of anxiety and super self conscious. Had a bad abusive relationship in high school, and she talks a lot about how her current boyfriend “saved” her. Her whole world, outside of school stuff, seems to center on this guy, making wedding plans, naming their babies. He hasn’t even proposed to her yet. I think he’s a nice guy. But, he’s 21, and so many things can happen. It scares me for her. I want her to have some kind of back up plan if or when things don’t pan out. Speaking from experience being both people in this situation (both the clinger and the one clung to)- it’s also way too much pressure to put on one person to have them fill your cup constantly.

I know it’s not my decision, or my life, or anything I have any control over. I have to let it go and let them make their own choices. I just care about them and want them to avoid bad choices I made. :/

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I’m an only child so maybe this is what being an older sibling feels like? Halp.