05/02/2012 11:39 am ET Updated Mar 01, 2013

The 7 Worst Reasons To Get Married

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There's really only one good reason to get married: because you've found your soul mate, you know each other well enough and long enough to be positive you want to spend the rest of your lives together, and you're mature enough to work hard at keeping your relationship strong. But there are so many bad ones. Here are the seven worst.

Your ex is engaged.
I can't pretend to know how excruciatingly painful it is when you learn that someone you thought you might one day marry is marrying someone else. Still, his or her impending nuptials shouldn't accelerate the relationship you're in toward forever. Whenever celebrity exes get engaged to new loves around the same time, I can't help but think the first engagement is the main reason for the second betrothal.

Related: The scary new way brides are losing weight for their weddings.

You've been dating a while.
Longevity alone isn't enough to qualify your relationship for a successful marriage. It's certainly a nice foundation, but it takes much more, like shared dreams and mutual respect, to have a great shot at working out. Don't take the next step solely because it's the next step; be sure you're perfect together.

You are, or she is, pregnant.
Rush to the altar because you have a baby on the way and you'll probably trip. You don't need to be committed to someone to have sex that ends up creating a person. You should be committed to someone before you marry them. Sure, you two will share a link as long as you two and your child are alive, but plenty of well-adjusted children come from happy single-parent homes -- and they may be better off than those children who come from unhappy two-parent homes. If you were moving toward marriage anyway and, whoops!, there's now a baby on board, by all means, go full steam ahead with your wedding plans.

Your friends are married.
It's nice not to be a third, fifth, or seventh wheel when you go out with your coupled-off pals. It's not as nice when you wish you held out for someone besides the person who makes you a twosome. Besides, good married buddies will hook you up so you won't be single for long.

See more: The worst possible thing a bride could do to a bridesmaid

Your family wants you to.
Arranged marriages have worked for centuries in non-Western cultures (and probably some Western ones too). But if you don't see yourself being happy with whomever your relatives see as your match, don't get hitched. Or maybe Mom and Dad like the boyfriend you've chosen for yourself and are pressuring you to get engaged immediately because they're dying to throw you the wedding they've dreamed of planning. Nope, still not a good reason to head into matrimony. Only you and your guy can decide when you're ready.

He or she's loaded.
While it seems to work fine for the current Mrs. Trump, money only takes a marriage so far. Yes, there is a lot to be said about leading a comfortable life, yet if you're not living it with someone you love, what's the point?

You're worried you won't find anyone else.
You will.

Do you think any of the above are actually good reasons to exchange vows? Any other extraordinarily crappy ideas to get married?