Average dating age for women

By national standards, 27 is not particularly young to wed. I'm from London and like most of my friends who grew up here, I felt life was much too interesting to give it all up and get hitched.

At that point, marriage felt like a provincial concept, weighty and dull.

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Lady Diana Spencer, as she was then, had just turned 20 when she married Prince of Wales.

Catherine Middleton, in contrast is 29 years old, suggesting that the forthcoming Royal Wedding is – despite its pomp – more reflective of British social trends than some admit.

In his words, "the less seriously marriage is taken as an institution, the more sincere it becomes". Not with my husband-to-be, who had to buy a suit especially for our wedding, biting a considerable chunk from our £2,000-for-absolutely-everything budget in the process.

As I looked at the age my parents married and wondered why on Earth anyone would marry so young, so it's likely that my own kids will wonder what on Earth I was playing at getting married at 27. I was 27 when he proposed, while simultaneously changing our daughter's nappy as I swept the floor in a rented apartment in Brooklyn on a trip to visit friends.

It was marginally more romantic than it sounds, though it needn't have been.

Our first child had just turned three months and, ever since my mum's friend who is a lawyer and more sensible than I am insisted it would make dealing with bureaucracy, should anything terrible happen to either of us, much easier if we'd sign a wedding certificate, I'd started dropping hints, namely telling my boyfriend repeatedly, "We need to get married".

Alas, there's that old John Lennon adage about life and other plans. Although the average age at (first) marriage for men in England and Wales is just over 32, the most common age-group by frequency to get married is 25-29 for both men and women.

I met my now-wife on the first day of university, we started dating a couple of months later, and by the time we were 25, we'd been going out for six years. We were only the second among our group of friends to get married, but perhaps that reflected the demographics of our group.

"Your 20s have now became a decade for establishing yourself, education, degrees and a career.

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