Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A Regression of Marriage against Time

*This post is testament to what happens when you attempt to process your musings on the bus ride home with half-hearted regression analysis. Both Econometrics and Storytelling were harmed in the making of this post.

There are some girls who have their wedding dresses picked out at age nine. Age and body mass changes may make some alterations to this design, but the final wedding dress will be a beautiful princess cut ivory dress with a sweetheart neckline and delicate sleeves, just like she drew at Kowah’s 9th birthday sleepover.

There are others who have to be cajoled and prodded by nature and society to contemplate their wedding days. Even then, they (brandishing a risk aversion fashioned by experience and/or inherent nature) reluctantly enter the pool and readily grasp on to any mishap as reason to head back to shore and stay there.

Time and tide doth happen to both groups, and it’s interesting to note a convergence in attitude towards marriage with time.

Your college years are purported to be prime partner-finding time. You will never again have as big a pool of eligible, relatively untouched suitors within ready reach. The ‘relatively untouched’ is crucial because as you grow, you realize that people’s college and post-college experiences changes them. And if the liaisons before you did not end at the altar, they invariably carry some baggage which adds another level of difficulty to being with them.

It follows then that the years right after college are the years you see the most nuptials. Those who sustained their campus (and sometimes high school) relationships make it official, and those whose progress was impeded by perceived immaturity quickly grow up once thrown into the jungle that is today’s workplace and if so inclined, find mates thereafter.

Receiving wedding invitation after invitation takes its toll on a soul, and this is the time where the desire to one day (sooner or later) get married is strongest. This lasts one to four years after which the invitations become infrequent, and controlling for the fact that you lose touch with old friends, it is at this stage that those who got married have gotten over the honeymoon phase and the cracks if any start to show.

Thus, amidst the tales of infidelity and divorce, the marriage stock falls, making you more likely to invest your time, energy or emotions elsewhere, or at the very least, make some reallocations in your investment portfolio. Of course, there is a mixed effect here due to invitations to offspring events potentially pulling at your maternal and paternal strings to be accounted for.

It is easy to see why the propensity to get married sees a steady decline once you reach thirty. At this stage, you know exactly what you do and don’t want. Worse, you’ve probably figured out (rightly or falsely so) that you let someone who was exactly what you needed go and so tend to measure everyone by them, requiring that they be at least as good as. I know. Life…

After thirty, the decline slows down and your curve approaches the axis as time approaches infinity, never quite touching it.