I am overshadowed by a generation who refuses to get married because they claim they do not have to prove to the world their eternal love for each other. They privately promise though, to be eternally faithful to the other-the very thing they would during a marriage ceremony. However, they refuse to buy into some social construction just to throw a big party for their families.
This group I am talking about is about 30-35 years old currently, they were born in the late 1970s. Mostly Czech couples. Couples. Not just feminist women who refuse to be enslaved as domestic beings or men who want their bachelor pads and freedom to drink straight from milk cartons. These are couples who have been together for long periods of time, 7 to 12 years, which is actually quite impressive. Yet they wholeheartedly refuse to get married. They do not need the world. They are fine on their own.
Back to the excuses:
Who says there has to be a feast? Traditionally, across all cultures, it has been a big deal, but so what? Make it your own. Throw a tea party, backyard bash. The wedding should be a chance to acknowledge, recognize, support and just be darn happy for the couple.
Ironically, these people are both of ages who have been able to be in the professional world enjoying perks for quite a while, no longer youngsters who need help getting started on their own. They actually have the means to treat a small gathering.
Although I am all for emancipation and not following tradition just for the sake of it, I may be too conservative to understand these folks.
The most unfortunate part is, that many of them end up getting married yet in the most unfortunate of circumstances.
1. Some get pregnant and suddenly feel like they have to hurry to catch up, or they start to realize the value of marriage and in a rush, try to make it before the baby arrives.
Heavy, puffy and bloated makes for sexy wedding pictures.
2. The others, who cave in, do so privately. They still get dressed up, but just recite their vows in the presence on 1, 2, maybe 3 people. They fight against an institution for so long until they start to feel they are missing out. The first step is that they exchange rings, but swear to go no further than that. Then they write each other vows. They stubbornly claim they are individuals who will define their relationship on their own terms. Pretty soon, they go through the whole affair without really realizing it and without anyone present to celebrate with them.
They go so far they come full circle.
Committed, by Liz Gibson is a perfect example. She spent a whole year stressing the situation, eventually getting married several times-to the same person. Since she had such a strong aversion towards marriage, she could have gotten the whole thing over with silently, just to have the legal paperwork, to allow her partner, lover, boyfriend, man whor…what ever they purport to be, be together in the US. Yet she devotes an entire year to solve this bizarre aversion until she comes to conclusion with it.
Even if we agree that marriage is an institution, it would not be so long lived if there were no truth to it and it were just a suffocating-freedom-suppressing mechanism to keep order and reproduction going.
Is it a disillusioned generation who grew up on the tail end of communism, constantly hearing the pessimistic complaining of those who were exhausted by a lifetime of communist oppression, that they are indefinitely preoccupied with material possessions and a constant need to prove themselves?
This song tipifies this group. They sit on the sidelines and watch life from a distance, ceaselessly complaining how it is better elsewhere, wallowing in self pity. They then turn these emotions into stubborn refusal to participate in any communal activities or take on responsibilities.
Why not be proud of the person you fell in love with? Have the courage to proclaim it. Hiding behind the ideas of being free from bondage, open minded, is just cowardly. Altogether is seems they are avoiding responsibility and keeping a back door open.
Sure it takes guts, I get that. Humbling yourself and being willing to give up yourself for the other, publically accepting all their faults. Fainting at the altar is allowed! (…makes for a good story anyway, and you can replay the recorded ceremony)
Even in the book, Liz Gilbert tortures her mind trying to logically argue that marriage is a hoax. She too separates herself so far from the institution that she falls right back into it. Only this time, she realizes that it is what she actually wants. Recognition.
Ultimately, the marriage is not for the couples. It is for the community. You decide, we’re in this together, but it is the community that should make your relationship legitimate by recognizing it.
Give them the opportunity to call your relationship by its real name.
Loving the other person means you want people to know about them. Show them off then!
Man up, women!