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College Students: 25 Is Perfect Age for Marriage

TUESDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- A national survey finds that American college students believe that 25 is the right age to get married, but most of their parents believe that's a bit too young.

"The assumption has been that the younger generation wants to delay marriage and parents are hassling them about when they would get married," study lead author Brian Willoughby, a professor at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, said in a university news release. "We actually found the opposite -- that the parental generation is showing the 'slow-down' mindset more than the young adults."

The survey included more than 500 college students from five campuses around the country, and the students' parents. The concern about their children getting married too young was shared by both mothers and fathers.

"Initially we thought that this might be dads wanting their daughters to delay marriage," Willoughby said. "Moms and dads trended together -- gender wasn't a factor."

In general, the parents believed the right age to get married was a year older than what their children said, according to the study, which was published in the November print issue of The Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

One of the main reasons for parents' wanting their children to get married at a later age was that they believed their children should get an education first, according to the survey.

"I think parents have a lot of fear for their kids that makes them want to delay the transitions to adulthood," Willoughby said.

The median age for first marriages in the United States is 27, according to 2010 Census data.

More information

The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy offers advice about marriage preparation.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Brigham Young University, news release

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