Journal Relationships

“Yes, I married young. No, I’m not pregnant.”

“Yes, I married young. No, I’m not pregnant.”
Written by Emma Richardson

“Yes, I married young. No, I’m not pregnant.”

I have found myself rhyming off these words countless times over the past three years. When I ended up with a ring on my finger at nineteen years old and a march down the aisle at twenty, I had many people questioning my intentions.

“Don’t you want to travel? Have a career? Most people are waiting these days, you know.”

Yes, I know.


In a world where independence seems to be the coveted status to obtain, many people have been confused with my willingness to enter into a seemingly dependent situation so early on. When we first announced our engagement some even thought that we must have been expecting a baby. They simply could not rationalize why I might actually want to be married without ‘experiencing life’ first.

What these people fail to realize, or perhaps never had the pleasure of experiencing themselves, is that marriage at a young age can actually allow you to experience life in a broad, fulfilling capacity. I do not feel that I have sacrificed my independence, or have needed to grieve the loss of my freedom during these early years of marriage.

In reality, being married at a young age has actually required me to grow and flourish as an individual more than I may ever have had the opportunity to do while single. I have had the chance to make financial decisions, education choices and take moral stands alongside someone who challenges, questions, and celebrates me. I have learned patience in the midst of differing opinions, joy in the little triumphs (like actually staying on budget this month), and how to serve someone else even when everything in me wants to be selfish.

You see, what I have realized is that no matter what stage in life you are in, there is always a different place or opportunity that someone else may think best for you to pursue. If you are single you may find yourself in multiple conversations a week of you aunt/friend/sister/great-grandmother knowing someone who knows someone who would be just perfect for you. If you are early in your married days you may find yourself being reminded of that ticking clock. People might have an opinion about the number of children you have, when you buy a home, or any other number of things that seem to have an appropriate timeline in the mind of others.

I have learned that no matter what decisions you make in your life, the most important factor is not what someone else thinks, but what is actually best for you. Seek out positive relationships and be selective of who you let speak into your life. There will never be the perfect, ideal timeline for everything and that is okay.

Maybe you are backpacking through Iceland, pursuing a career in medicine or living under your parents’ roof. Maybe you are married with several kids, divorced and looking for a fresh start, single and loving life. I choose to look to you and cheer. Embrace the place you are in, whatever it looks like. And as you do, I ask that you cheer for me too.


About the author

Emma Richardson

Emma is a twenty-something girl from Southern Ontario. With an avid love of reading, learning, and anything sweet, Emma spends her days studying and working as a qualifying psychotherapist. She also pastors alongside her loving husband, Brandon.

With dreams of writing, photography and children in the future, Emma seeks to find joy in the ordinary, taking note of the small moments and deep breaths during the big ones. As a young wife, Emma continues to learn (daily!) how to love and care for others while balancing the need to love herself well. You can find her musings and newest adventures on her blog at


  • Emma: Kudos for your wise words. This year I will be celebrating 43 wonderful years of being married with the love of my life. We were married at 19 also. I laughed at the question posed 7 months later “What did you have?” 9 years later we gave birth to our first! Amazingly throughout the years we have walked through our vows holding hands – through sickness,through health, through richness and poor for better and for worse. We are both strong individuals who respect each other, “LIKE” each other and have great respect for each other. We continue to grow as individuals. Yes some days [even months]have been tough but we have survived and continue to love each other. I wish you and your husband as many happy wonderful years as we have had. I look forward to reading more about your adventures!

    • Thanks for the encouraging words! Such a great testament to thriving in whatever stage you are in! It is encouraging to hear from someone who has been there and doing so great years later. I am excited to share more!

  • Hey Emma,

    I admire your defiance! Good on you for not adhering to whatever everyone else thinks you should be doing. I particularly like how you said “…no matter what stage in life you are in, there is always a different place or opportunity that someone else may think best for you to pursue.”

    Too true!

  • Emma,
    Thanks for taking the time to address something that has been an issue for many others. My husband and I met when we were 19 and married soon after. We just celebrated our 18th anniversary on August 29th. We too have been through many challenges, but we met them together. My husband has been my supporter every day, through massive health challenges, the loss of my father and just life in general. I hope that I have been as good to him as he has been to me. It is my wish that you and your husband have an amazing future together, and enjoy every day that you have!

    • Thanks so much for sharing a piece of your story! It’s always encouraging to hear of others further down the road who have faced so much together. Your kind words and encouragement are definitely appreciated!