A lot has been made recently of millennials saddled by student loan debt, delaying marriage, and putting off their first home purchase.

In a piece for MarketWatch, staffer Jillian Berman explores why student loan debt delays marriage for many millennials. With student loans now the norm among college graduates — and increasingly even for those who don’t graduate — does it make sense for something so common to still be a barrier to one of our major cultural milestones?

Shannon McClay, the founder of the Financial Gym, a New York City-based financial coaching company, says it’s a psychological thing. McClay likens the notion of waiting to marry until debt is paid off to timing your wedding to when you lose enough weight to fit in your dress. You may be embarrassed about your weight or your debt, but there’s nothing about it that actually prevents you from getting married. In fact, McClay counsels her couple clients to work together to tackle the debt if they anticipate a long-term future together, even if it only belongs to one partner.

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