I was just remembering today an experience I had before I was married, when I was dating my husband. Admittedly, our experience wasn't the expected way to do things, but it worked for us. But I had one nay-sayer that I've never forgotten
My husband and I met at the "Chinese house" at BYU. I was sitting on the front lawn showing pictures of my mission in Taiwan to a roommate, when Paul came walking up. He had lent his television to my Taiwanese roommate for the summer, and had come to retrieve it. I had already scoped out the other guys living in the men's Chinese house, but hadn't met Paul yet. My Taiwanese roommate insisted that one of the adapter cords for the television was hers. Paul very kindly argued that it was his. She wouldn't back down, so he did. I was so embarrassed that she had used his television all summer, and couldn't give in on this little cord. But I was impressed that he let it go. Our first date was to a "fireside" (church meeting with a guest speaker). Then we just started hanging out. We took walks, studied together, and just hung out. I began cooking lunch for him every day. This might sound weird, but our only other official date was when I invited him to go with me to see the Beijing Acrobats, and we took along one of my roommates. So we didn't do the official dating thing much, but we did spend a lot of time together.
Sometimes Paul would come meet me after a child development class I had. One day before my teacher started the class, he turned to me and said, "Since you are my favorite student..." (That caught my attention because I think the opposite was true.. lol) "I have a gift for you." Instantly I knew what had happened. Paul had gone to him before class and given him a flower and candy bar and asked him to give it to me when I came in. I don't think he realized the teacher would do it IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE CLASS! I know my face turned a thousand shades of red!
After two months of dating, Paul and I got engaged. Yes, two months. We were both 25 years old. We have often said that since we were older, and we knew it was the right thing, why wait? We could have done the socially appropriate thing and wait a year or something, but we are very pragmatic and decided to get married during our winter break. I have never regretted it.
I went to my child development class after I got engaged, and some of my friends, before class started, noticed I was wearing an engagement ring. The teacher over heard us and asked how long we had been dating. When I told him two months, he was shocked and started talking about girls who let themselves get swept off their feet without really knowing the person. Once again I was very embarrassed. Marriage is a very personal thing, and I didn't feel comfortable sharing my feelings in front of a huge class of students, so I didn't answer his comments. But on days like today, I really wish I could look him up and tell him that I have been married 27 years, and have never regretted my decision. Yes, there are some young dumb girls out there, but don't lump us all in the same category. This is one girl who was smart enough to know when she had a good thing!