When people hear that Damien and I have been together for 8+ years, the first questions they ask are:
“Getting Married Soon?”
“Marriage on the cards?”
“Why aren’t you married?”
My insides get filled with internal eye-rolls and deep disappointment.
But why should it be? Isn’t that a normal question?
Sure it is.
But the whole concept of marriage to me is bewildering.
Maybe it’s because growing up, I never saw a happy marriage I wanted to emulate.
Or maybe because the idea of making a commitment that’s a delusional lie irritates the hell out of me. How can someone in their right mind commit to someone when they have no idea whom they’ll become as they grow older? Or whom their partner will become? Or how circumstance will make them realise they’re not right for each other?
Makes no sense to me…
I know what you’re thinking.
It’s more about the sentiment than the practicality or getting married.
It’s about a show of commitment.
Fair enough but that ‘show’ of commitment can have lasting legal obligations that can screw up your future. If you don’t want to be practical about your future, at least think about not f#&king it up right?
But that’s not the whole story..
It would be great it it was just aboutt me and my thought on marriage but there is another person with thoughts and feeling (dang nammit)
The next thing I get asked often is:
“So your partner also doesn’t want to get married?”
He actually wants to be married but it’s not massively important to him to get married.
After lengthy conversations we’ve had together, what IS important to him that marriage does provide is:
1.Public acknowledgement that we are together (that I’m not trying to hide him)
2.Public acknowledgement of our commitment (that he feels stable and that there’s trust)
3.That we don’t create confusion and trauma for our future children by not getting married (getting bullied in school for having unmarried parents)
Ok, fair enough.
So what we talked about is trying to fulfil these aspects of marriage without signing a legally binding contract that screws us in the long run.
Here has been my response so far:
1.We are publicly in a relationship on Facebook (so that all friends and family know we are together) I’m sure that accounts for a marriage in modern times right?
2.I agreed to potentially be forever engaged as an acknowledgement of our commitment. He gets to put a ring on it. This was a big move for me to make after realising I have made no public acknowledgement of my commitment to this relationship. Damien really appreciated the sentiment but acknowledged we probably won’t because we’d forever be getting questioned about a wedding that’s never going to happen. But if he changes his mind, it’s always there.
3.As for our future children, I assured him that it’s very common to have unmarried parents and if it was really an issue when we have kids, I would certainly look into it.
Don’t get me wrong.
I would definitely get married if there was a practical reason for it. Getting a visa, for example. Damien is a dual citizen so if we needed to, I would get married so I didn’t have to screw around with visas.
And most people respond sarcastically with, ‘Wow, so romantic’.
If marriage enriched my life in a practical way, I would do it.
I’m okay with that. I’m also okay with changing my mind and realising it is something I want.
But i figure if I need marriage to give my relationship commitment and stability, I would suggest this relationships is not working.
And don’t even get me started about the cost of the whole things and the kind of money some people pay.