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where there's smoke: A building under construction next to the Logan Police Station caught fire from a welder's spark. Damage was estimated at $50,000. / Photo by Gideon Oakes

Today's word on journalism

August 27, 2008

On protests at political conventions:

"The citizens of Denver and St. Paul, and Americans everywhere, should hope officials in those cities already have considered both the constitutional and monetary costs of silencing voices that have a right to be heard. . . . Well-expressed or wacky. Irritating or illuminating. Respectful or raucous. There's nothing in the 45 words of the First Amendment that sets out any such qualifications or limits on protests. Time and again in our history, from women's suffrage to civil rights to tax protests, to name just some, voices first raised in the streets -- to the disgust or disappointment of some -- have led to significant, positive changes in law and American life."

--Gene Policinski, executive director, First Amendment Center, 2008

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LDS couple, like many Utahns, make their early marriage work

By Jennifer Taylor

May 12, 2008 | Michelle and Keven Bailey were going out for a night on the town. Their agenda included dinner and a movie and whatever else might catch their eye. That was the plan until Keven asked his wife, "Are you ready?" Michelle responded "Do I look ready? I haven't even done my hair yet!" Then she locked herself in the bathroom for the remaining portion of the night. This is the biggest fight the Baileys have ever had.

Keven had just come home from a mission in Canada when the two met. He got home in April; they met in June, were engaged in September and married in December. This sounds pretty fast for some people, but not for the Baileys.

They met at the Cache Valley Fun Park on country western swing night. Michelle knew one of Keven's friends from an institute class they had together and from that connection their two groups merged. Keven asked her to dance a few times and sparks flew. At the end of the night Keven still had not asked for her number so she left him with, "You know where to find me." He called her the next day and they began dating.

"It was never a factor of if we should get married; it was more of a when should it happen," said Keven.

He also said it was really comfortable from day one for them to talk about marriage. "It was a natural thing," he said, "as natural as that issue could be."

Michelle concurred whole-heartedly with Keven about this matter. "I knew after the first date he was the right one. Marriage never felt weird or uncomfortable to talk about with him."

A few months later, on Sept. 16, Keven proposed on the Mount Timpanogos Temple grounds. This was the temple Michelle had always wanted to get married in. Her and her father even had her parking space picked out and on her wedding day her father went a few hours early to save it for her.

According to the Census Bureau, the average age for men to get married was 27 in 2005, and the average age for women to get married was 25. According to BYU NewsNet, the average age LDS males get married is 22 and the average age LDS females get married is 21.

Some people think that getting married young will ruin a marriage. Not with these two. They got married when Michelle was 19 and Keven was 21. They've been married six and a half years and are still going strong. They have two children: Kaitlyn, 2, and Brycen who just turned 1.

One of the most memorable times Keven has had with his wife was when their daughter was born.

"It was then that we felt like we were a family," he said, "When you're just a couple, you don't feel like a family."

He said he remembers when the hospital allowed just the three of them to be together for an hour. He said this feeling washed over me and it was "pretty cool."

Looking back Keven said he didn't think he would marry young. He said, "I wanted to get two to three years of school in before I married someone."

He said he wouldn't trade where his life is right now, but it would have been a little easier if they would have waited.

"I'm still trying to get school done six and a half years later," he said.

Keven is a regional manager at Feature Films for Families. He said he worked his way up from a telemarketing position. He also said his full-time job is the reason it has taken him so long to finish school. Upon completion of school his degree will be in Sociology.

Michelle said she didn't think it would be any easier if they waited to get married. She said she already knew where her life was going and what she wanted to do. When they got married she had already been accepted into Nursing School. Currently, Michelle is a registered nurse and works graveyards at Logan Regional Hospital in the emergency room.

They both agreed their first month of marriage was a little rocky. They said it was a huge adjustment having a 24-hour companion. They also agreed they didn't think marriage was going to be as hard as it was.

"After about two weeks I was like, ‘What did I just do?' I liked my free time and it was weird having to account to someone where you were going and when you'd be back," said Keven.

They both agreed marriage took some time to get use to, "But once you get the hang of it, it's not that bad, it's actually kind of nice," said Keven.

They do have arguments every now and again. They said most of their arguments these days are about time and money. They also said none of their fights top the fight mentioned earlier. Michelle said she's never been so mad in her life, but said they worked through it together and now, upon reflection, laugh about it.

The Baileys didn't get married because of religious reasons. They said they met and it just felt right. Keven said, "Even if I wasn't LDS I still would have married Michelle, because I met who I met when I met her."

They agree that sometimes the LDS church pushes young people to get married. The church puts a strong emphasis on the family, and in turn, it encourages young adults to get married and start a family.

According to True to the Faith, an LDS publication, "Life's greatest joys are found in the family. Strong family relationships require effort, but such effort brings great happiness in this life and throughout eternity."

Sometimes LDS young adults get married so fast that they get married for the wrong reasons. LDS people are not supposed to engage in premarital sex, and sometimes couples want to have sex so desperately they get married to each other just so they can engage in sex without any consequences. These marriages usually do not last.

The Baileys got married at the same time as some of their friends. There were four couples getting married around the same time and three of the couples, including the Baileys, knew the fourth couple was getting married for the wrong reasons. They ended up getting divorced one and a half years later.

"It's sad when this happens. I can't imagine living life knowing that's why I married my spouse," Michelle said, "Love is based on friendship and you can't have a relationship without love. If you rush into things and don't think about them it can really mess up your life. It's important to not only love your spouse or significant other, but be friends too."

According to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary friendship is, "one attached to another by affection or esteem." Love is defined as, "unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another." Sometimes young people get confused about love. They think they're in love, but they're really in lust. Lust is, "a personal inclination." The difference between the two is that love is thoroughly unselfish and lust is completely selfish. When young adults get married for the wrong reasons, they're not in love, they're in complete lust.

Michelle had good, solid reasons for marrying Keven. She said as she sat on Keven's lap, "We had so much fun together; he treated me right and always kept me laughing. He was everything I wanted in a guy and more."

When Keven was asked why he chose to marry Michelle, a sly and mischievous look washed over his face and said, "I'm still trying to figure that out."

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