[Note: The following text was taken verbatim from the “M Men-Gleaner Manual, Love, Marriage, and You” used in 1956-1957. Previous entries in this series can be found here.]
Why Prepare for Marriage?
In an American city in 1948 two girls, age seventeen, went roller skating one evening. Their parents were of the upper middle group and were well respected in the community. One of the fathers was a professional man and the other was in business. The parents had not approved of their daughters going skating by themselves, but the girls had gone anyway. During the course of the evening the girls met two handsome men who were about twenty one years of age. They skated together, they chatted, they joked with each other, and within a couple of hours the young men had proposed marriage to the girls. Each of the girls accepted the proposal believing that here was real romance and a life of thrills and happiness. The four of them got into an automobile, which had been stolen unknown to the girls, crossed the state line and awakened a justice of the peace. He married each of the two couples by candlelight at three o’clock in the morning. Within a few days the fellows robbed a service station attendant and the girls held guns on the victim while their husbands rifled his pockets and the till. What supposedly started out as romantic, thrilling marriages ended with heartbreaks and disaster. The girls soon discovered that the boys they had married were dangerous criminals who were wanted by the police in several parts of the country for robbery, rape and murder. The girls left the fellows and returned home, disillusioned and with deep emotional scars. Although this account is an unusual one, it typifies some of the results of thousands of marriages entered into in haste or without proper planning.
1. How many of you would like to get married in a similar manner? Why or why not?
2. What suggestions would you make to young people in order to prevent hasty marriages?