Dear Auntie Seraphic,
Do men change? My mother says that they never do, but she's always been pessimistic about men. My boyfriend has made changes when he found out something he said or did really bothered me. And anyway, what about men who are striving for holiness? Don't they change?
Dear Changing Men,
It was my mother's opinion that men do not change after the age of 30, so if you expect a man to change, you must snaffle him before then.
However, I think she must have meant major tendencies of character, like zeal versus laziness, intellectual vigour versus dullness, and kindness versus malice. It is certainly possible and likely for a kind man to change how he behaves around a woman if he knows certain things he does or says make her upset. It is less likely that a malicious man will do so.
The good thing about marrying older is that one and one's husband know exactly what they're getting by way of a spouse. A twenty year old man is not going to be the same man at thirty. However, a thirty year old man will probably be the same man at forty. Technically a twenty year old bride and groom are expected to "grow up together" although the notion makes me shudder. What a risk.
The important thing is that you marry only a man that you really love and who really loves you. If you are thinking the man you are with needs a major overhaul, don't marry him. Yes, a man who loves Christ will strive for holiness, but my guess is that one should see some of the fruits of this already in a man of 30-odd. A man who goes to confession for staring too long at a bare-chested woman who popped up in an ordinary film is rather a different man from the one who has a deep-seated porn addiction.
I hope this is helpful. To summarize: major changes after 30, probably not (although one must leave mental room for the workings of the Holy Spirit); little changes in keeping with his overall character, yes.
Grace and peace,