Tuesday, October 23, 2007

For Better or Worse?

The other day, during a friendly get together, one of my friends said out loud to the group: “When you’re our age you SHOULD get married.” She justified it somehow by saying that we want babies and such, and that’s why we should get married, and nobody else seemed to be bothered by her comment, but I’ve found myself sitting here thinking about it over and over for the past few days and each time I do I get a little more bothered by it.

I SHOULD get married? Why?

Last I checked I was perfectly capable of being in a committed loving relationship without needing a piece of paper from the state claiming that we were. And also while I’m at it, I never realized that a marriage is what determined my ability to have a child or not. I’d sure hate to be in the same room when all my committed lesbian friends find that out.

I’m not religious, so I don’t believe that I need the church’s permission to join my life with someone, but it seems as though now I need to justify my relationship with society by walking down the isle and saying “I Do”. Like suddenly because I’ve been with someone for four years and haven’t yet taken that leap that somehow makes our relationship or our future together irrelevant? Can we not start a family and begin a life together without me signing my last name away? I’m not sure how I feel about that.

I’m not against marriage, and I definitely would like to get married some day and start a family and do all that traditional stuff, but I didn’t realize it was something I HAD to do, or that I SHOULD do. Aside from the religious aspects of a marriage, why does one feel as though I SHOULD be married? What does a marriage provide to my relationship besides a binding contract? Isn’t the commitment to each other the most important thing? And unless we’re making a commitment to God in front of the church (which I would never do), isn’t the rest just a tradition, not a necessity?

Do you feel as though young women should get married? If so, why?


Sara said...

Ugh! Sorry, your friends comments really bother me.

I firmly believe that is part of the reason there is such a high divorce rate. People are getting married because they feel like that is what they are "supposed" to do.

Individuals need to be individuals and make decisions for what works in their OWN PERSONAL relationships - not everyone else's.

You're thinking of things the right way, in my opinion.

Anonymous said...

What bothers me about that comment is that it actually seems so old fashioned to me. Not everyone SHOULD or NEEDS to get married "at your age" or by any certain age any more. I think it is becoming more common for folks to get married later in life. I try to think of blanket statments like that as lifes little reminders to question life in general and what happens around us.

Accidentally Me said...

Your friend is an idiot...lol.


What, at 25, you are of no value to anyone unless you can pop out children? That's total bullshit. Do the things you want to do, work and play-wise, and if you happen to come across someone that you really want to settle down with, then you should do it.

Your friend sounds like someone who is desperate to prove her worth by getting some guy to say she is worthwhile, and that is a recipe for a miserable life.

Christi said...

In her defense, she's great, and doesn't need a guy to feel worthwhile. I'm even really sure where she was going with the statement because she's normally not one to pass such judgement. I just found it slightly bothersome and was wondering if my thinking was a little "too modern" =)

Christi said...

** not even really sure. Correction.

Jill Ferrel said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Christi said...

woops, that delete was an accident...honestly!

As for your comments Jill, who are you? And how do you know so much about me?

As for my post, I was speaking in generics...not specifically my love life.

OC said...

I agree with AM - you should get married when you have found someone you love and you have both agreed that you want to commit to spending the rest of your lives together. That's the only time you SHOULD make that commitment.

If marriage is something that is forced, what does that say about our society?

Sarah said...

UH. I hate the "should" attitude.

I think it's really insensitive to make a comment like that, especially when some people can't legally get married due to extremely unjust laws. I also don't like that if I want to be considered "next of kin" for legal and medical purposes, I have to marry my significant other.

Also, age and children have nothing to do with it. There are so many things wrong with that comment from your friend. What about adoption? Can't children be raised by non-married parents? Can't people be married and choose NOT to have kids? Isn't it true that you can get married at ANY age over 18, and that you don't just turn to dust at 29?

I could go on, but I won't ;-)

Erin Nevicosi said...

That's completely ridiculous.

OBVIOUSLY no one *should* get married for any other reason than they want to get married and have found someone that they're very sure they could spend their whole lives with.

I'm with Sara - that's why the divorce rate is so high. People are dumb enough to feel pressured by society to do something that they're not really sure they're ready to do.

Um, who made this comment? Was it at the get-together I was at? If so, then I probably know who it was. I didn't hear it, though.

Seriously, though, how ridiculous.