A recent Department of Defense studya hre found a dramatic difference between the age at which military personnel marry, as opposed to the general population. Social scientists have observed a long-term trend upward in the age of both men and women nationally, with the average age at a first marriage at 27 for women and 29 for men. That’s not the case with active duty military personnel, though.
According to the study, nearly half of all soldiers (male and female) have tied the knot before the age of 25 and two out of three before they hit 30. Officials have long witnessed the trend for young couples to wed when one of the parties is about to embark on a permanent duty assignment in another part of the world. They say, though, that such a phenomenon simply does not account for the high percentage of young newlyweds in the military. Here are some of the other reasons cited:
- Many soldiers, especially those who have been in combat zones, have experienced deep loss and marriage provides a sense of stability. They also understand the fragility of life and are more inclined to be proactive about the things they want to do
- Soldiers don’t have to wait to establish a career
- Male soldiers may want to ensure that they create a legacy, in the event they don’t return from an active combat zone
- Married soldiers receive extra pay for having a family and can avoid living in the barracks
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