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I Got Engaged at 19 to a Guy I Knew For a Month, and it Was the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me

Cosmopolitan logo Cosmopolitan 12/7/2018 As told to Hannah Smothers

Like a certain other couple who recently got engaged, Jenna and Ben Maxwell knew at a very young age they were meant to be together-and so they didn't waste any time. What started as a normal, late September afternoon at Jenna's hair salon job in Provo, Utah turned into a whirlwind romance. The two quickly became inseparable, and less than a month after meeting, Ben and Jenna were engaged.

Now, almost two years after they met, the couple is expecting their first child. Jenna spoke to Cosmopolitan.com about getting engaged young and fast and why she's so glad she did.

The day we met, September 25, I was working at a Supercuts in Provo, Utah, and Ben just came in one Tuesday afternoon. It was my turn to cut the next customer's hair, and I saw him and thought, Oh, he's cute! We talked throughout the whole appointment. He still claims he asked for my number at the end of it, but I promise you, he did not.

a man and a woman smiling and posing for the camera: The first photo Ben and Jenna took together. © Courtesy of Jenna Maxwell The first photo Ben and Jenna took together.

As soon as he left, I had a feeling that I needed to look him up and get ahold of him. I just had that feeling that, if I didn't seek him out, I would lose out on something. A few days after the haircut, I found Ben on Facebook. And then, shortly after that, my friend and I actually matched with him and his friend on Tinder. He messaged me and said, "You're the girl who cut my hair," and we started talking.

Our first date, less than a week after his haircut and matching on Tinder, was that Sunday. He took me to his brother's restaurant for dinner. When we first started going out, I actually was talking to two other guys-you know, being single, just dating around. But after my first date with Ben, I quickly realized I didn't want to be with either of them or anyone else-I wanted to be with Ben. We went on a second date a few days after the first, and that's when we had our first kiss. He kissed me, and it was like sparks.

We still weren't official, but my parents were coming into town the following week. I decided to have them meet Ben, and they loved him. They told me later they thought, "This is the guy Jenna's going to marry." It was actually a really big deal for me-I would have dropped Ben if my dad said he didn't like him. But both my parents did, and I told them, "You know, we're not official yet, but I like this guy and he likes me, so let's just see what happens."

After that, about two weeks after our first date, we were at a bonfire with friends. We were sitting there, just cuddling and getting ready to leave, when he asked what my plans were for the next day. I told him, and before he left, he said, "Love ya, see you next week!"

I called my mom the next day and was like, "Mom, he told me he loved me!" I was crying, and she said, "I know you love him, too." I told her I'd never felt that way before and I didn't know what to do about it. I had such strong feelings for him. You know when you like someone, and it's that one person, and you never want them to go away? With every other guy I'd dated, I'd found a reason not to be with them. But with Ben, the more we talked and hung out in those first few weeks, the more I liked him. We did everything together, no matter what we were doing, we were always together.

a man and a woman standing in a dark room: The night Ben proposed to Jenna. © Mackrif Photography/Courtesy of Jenna Maxwell The night Ben proposed to Jenna.

About two weeks after the bonfire, on October 25, Ben proposed to me in the middle of the night. He'd set up this whole scheme to surprise me. I remember that around 10 or 11 at night, a friend of Ben's texted to say he'd had a rough day and wanted to know if I'd hang out with him while he took pictures of the clouds at night in a nearby canyon. I was so confused-it was dark out, and I didn't know what he was talking about. I texted Ben, who was at work, about it, and he suggested I go.

Ben's friend and I drove out to Provo Canyon together in the middle of the night, and Ben was there when we got there. Usually when he gets off work, he's just wearing a black T-shirt, but I noticed he looked really nice. We were standing near a small waterfall that we could hear but couldn't see, since it was after midnight, when Ben's friend started taking pictures of the two of us.

Ben's really tall, so when we hug, my head hits his chest. We were hugging for a photo, and I asked him why his heart was beating so fast. He said, "I have something to ask you," and then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I was so surprised, the first thing I said was, "When did you get the ring!?" And then, of course, I said yes.

My parents were all for it-they were like, "If you're going to get married, you're going to get married now." Some of my friends thought I was too young or moving too fast. I just said, "That's your opinion-if I'm supposed to marry this guy, I'm going to marry him." I don't think age matters. When you find that one person you're going to spend the rest of your life with, you go for it. If that's the one, why hesitate?

We got married in early January after a three-month engagement. And a year and a half later, Ben and I are still married and have our first baby on the way, due this November. I'm so happy I didn't really have to try and find the one person I was going to be with. It's like I told my family-when you know, you know.

Interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity. Lead photo by Ashley Fox Photography.

Follow Hannah on Twitter.

How one young couple knew they were right for each other after only one month of dating.: I Got Engaged in Less Than a Month © Ashley Fox Photography/Courtesy of Jenna Maxwell I Got Engaged in Less Than a Month

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