Summer is wedding season. The warm summer weather and long summer nights are the perfect breeding grounds for wedding fever. Why are weddings so important to women? And why is there so much pressure on couples to get married, especially when the divorce rate is over 40%. There are a lot of unanswered questions in the next few paragraphs. I am as confused by this phenomenon as many of you are, and with this article I am trying to raise the questions in your heads so we can all think about why we do what we do and maybe start a few conversations that can start to change the way we see and do things.
I am in a committed relationship, but does that mean that we have to get married to stay together? Relationships usually have a predictable pattern, like stairs, you are always moving towards the next step. It starts with casual dating and moves to exclusive dating then you move in together, then maybe you buy a house together, or maybe you get married and start thinking about kids. But why do relationships have to follow the norm? Why can you not just be together and be happy? Why do we all feel that we need that piece of paper to validate our relationships?
I was never one of those gurls who dreamed about weddings and had my entire wedding planned by the time high school was over. I actually never wanted to get married nor have kids, so why is it now that I am in a serious relationship, all I can think about is marriage?
Marriage started as a convenience for men. Women were sold off to the highest bidder or carried off in a raid. Wives were simply used for procreation and household labour. Sometimes marriages were arranged to prevent war and bring together two feuding households or countries. Women were used as bartering chips in the men’s pockets.
There is so much pressure on the women of today to get married and start a family. But with women being as independent and strong as they are today why do we always feel that we need to find a good man and get married? Why are we still depending on men to make us happy and protect us?
Personally now that I am in a serious relationship I find myself dreaming about getting married and my wedding, but I have never wanted to get married before. I feel that my relationship needs to move to that next step to succeed, but that is not true.
Why do we pay thousands of dollars to throw a party for everyone else to celebrate our wedding? Why are the bride and groom or their families forking out the money when it should be up to the invited guests to hold a party for the couple? Why do we feel the need for ancient traditions like having something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue? If the wedding is about the bride and groom, why are they the ones to do all the work?
I may have changed my mind about wanting to get married but I am not going to fall for most of the old traditions. I don’t need anything old or new, borrowed or blue. I am going to have a potluck so I am not forced to do all of the work, and I don’t need the huge wedding with the dress and the church. I want a simple intimate service with our families and then a big party afterwards for all our friends to congratulate us. If I am going to get married, I am not going to abandon all of my morals and get sucked into all of the traditions. It will be my wedding, my way.