Seventeen and Engaged

By Roe, age 17, Oman

We always talk about how 'people' are judgmental. How they 'just don't understand.' How they comment on things that are no business of theirs without even thinking of the consequences.

And yet ...

Sometimes, we forget that maybe, just maybe, we're not all that different from those 'people' after all.

For example, if I tell you I'm seventeen and engaged, what is your first reaction going to be?

Don't get me wrong. There might be people among you, and I believe there are, who will congratulate me, tell me they are happy for me, and ask me what the guy is like and how we met. But if we're honest, just how many people out of ten would that be?

The funny thing is, if you ask someone - anyone - what the right age is to get married, or engaged, or even go to college, they can't answer that. Because it depends. It always depends. And yet, the general opinion in the world is that whatever the right time is to get engaged, it's definitely not seventeen. Some of the varied reactions I'd get would be:

"Oh my God! Was it an arranged marriage?"

"How much older than you is he?"

"So you're just going to become one of those high school diploma wives now?"

"And here I thought you had such a bright future ahead of you!"

I hear all that, and I say: "What is with all these assumptions anyway?"

They say: "When a seventeen year old gets engaged to a nineteen year old, it is highly unlikely that everything is okay."

Firstly, if that's the kind of world we live in, then it is a very sad plight indeed.

Secondly, does it also mean that it is impossible?

I'll tell you what the problem is. It's this crazy race to compete and to control. It's people judging you and measuring you left, right and center. It's all about us trying to fit in. Why else would any sane person start smoking, do drugs, bully, or wear ridiculous things that make you look like you stepped out of a circus? It's about people who live for others, people too scared to change their drift because what if they're left all alone?

I ask: Is being left alone really the worst that can happen to you?

When you blindly follow celebrities, the 'popular' clique, and 'anybody who is somebody,' losing yourself somewhere along the way, hasn't something worse already happened to you?

Back to being seventeen and engaged. If I justify myself to you, I can hope that most, if not all of you, will not judge me anymore.

But the real question is: why should I?

Despite all the talk about respecting each other's opinions and quirks, being happy for someone when they're happy, and most importantly, omitting judgment when we hear 'a seventeen year old got engaged,' or 'a twenty year old had a baby,' we still judge, don't we?

And just so you know, it's true. I really am seventeen, and I got engaged recently - and I'm proud and happy about that.

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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