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Discussion Starter #1
Inspired by Thalia's comments on Tame's posting in the "Warning to all Men" thread:<br><br><br><br><i><b>'The female(male?) may even be shrewd enough to entrap the unsuspecting male(female) into a longer term form of servitude and punishment referred to as "marriage." '<br><br>
As you can tell, I have mixed feelings about marriage.</b></i><br><br><br><br><br><br>
I am SO the reluctant one in my relationship in terms of that kind of stuff.<br><br><br><br>
My boyfriend had dinner with the neighbour yesterday, and she couldn't believe that he'd had to talk me into moving in with him, and that I have said "no" repeatedly to his discussions of marriage. The only explanation she could come up with was "-?? ...Well, she must have been hurt in the past, like me."<br><br><br><br>
... What, are ALL women supposedly waiting around with the sole purpose of entrapping a man? Are we simply sitting around waiting for Prince Charming to come and sweep us away so we can wear the big white wedding dress at the big white wedding??<br><br><br><br>
Blech I say to that! BLECH!<br><br><br><br>
Hey, I'm 24. I've told Trevor he can ask me to marry him when we've been together for at least 3 years. He sees that as a grave injustice (though he's cool with my 'at which point let's run away by ourselves and get married on a beach in Hawaii' plan...).<br><br><br><br>
I just don't want to be anything less than completely SURE of my own decision making when I agree to something like that.<br><br>
I have NEVER been enthralled with the Big White Wedding Idea, so all that 'playing princess' crap just does not come into play with my decision making. I just wanna be damned sure that my belief in 'just knowing this is right' withstands the test of time... (3 years can throw a lot of crap at you, I figure.)<br><br><br><br>
Besides, cynical as I am, I have trouble seeing marriage as anything but the precursor to divorce. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":("><br><br><br><br><br><br>
But I'm always interested to know:<br><br><br><br>
For the unmarried: what are your thoughts on marriage, and/or wedding ideas/hopes/dreams, if you've ever had them?<br><br><br><br>
For the married: what were the circumstances under which you decided 'this is the one', how did you know? What was your wedding itself like, and what are your secrets to success in your relationship?<br><br><br><br>
For the divorced: Were there any clues along the way that should have tipped you off? Like: If only I'd known, or I hadn't caved on this or that, or I just wasn't conscious of ___, etc...<br><br><br><br><br><br>
Consider this an all things marriage/wedding related thread.
 

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First marriage- I was 18, he was 19, we'd been dating 3 months- only we lived 250 miles away from each other so that was about 5 dates and two hunded letters. I left school and moved in with him, we got married that summer and he started at university. We said "it's only a bit of paper- let's be different and get married..." It lasted 7 years, we grew up, changed a bit, split up amiably and are still in touch. Ceremony was civil, and supposed to be private, but in fact our closest family members came.<br><br><br><br>
Second marriage - [19 years later]. We knew each other from drinking in the same local pub. The barman committed suicide and after the funeral service we got together. He moved in with me 2 months later, we got married after 18 months. We eloped, and phoned our family etc from a hundred miles away to tell them that we were married.<br><br><br><br>
I couldn't bear the thought of a big white wedding, endless planning, wedding gifts and a cake and photos. But I love seeing other girls get married and doing the fairytale princess thing, it's not me though, I'm a tomboy.
 

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I go back and forth about the whole marriage deal. My extended family has made me feel like that's my only use, to get married and start churning out them babies, thus I am very reluctant to do what they wish. On the other hand, I think I'd really like to marry someone, and have a family.<br><br><br><br>
See, my parents have a really poor relationship. I've been told time and time again that the only reason my mother married my father was because he got her pregnant and she was afraid her family would freak out. Lovely. Just what I need to hear. Because of my father, I'm really frightened of getting myself into a situation similar to my mother's. He really has been a ****ty husband and a ****ty father.<br><br><br><br>
I'm also very bitter. Until recently, I told myself I hated love and I never wanted to be in a relationship.<br><br><br><br>
Maybe I'm too young to think about this. I don't <i>want</i> to think seriously about it yet...
 

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I think I'd like to get married someday. To me - marriage is just symbolic of ultimate commitment. If I'm ever going to get married, we would have to be absolutely perfect for each other in most every way - so chances are, I'm never going to get married. I just don't want to make the same mistakes my mom has (she's currently on marriage #6, and I think she should divorce the idiot she's with now). If I ever do get married - I absolutely do not want a huge fancy wedding! If I'll have a wedding at all. If I ever meet Mr. Perfect and he wants to go for one, then maybe I will.<br><br><br><br>
I personally feel too many people these days jump into marriage too quickly; some people either don't recognize the difference between true love & compatibility and infatuation & temporary tolerance, or they just want to drag a relationship out longer than it truely should last. Perhaps both.
 

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I think marriage is a wonderful thing. I agree that its definitely something people shouldn't rush into. Unlike many I dont see it as being a step on the path toward divorce...however I think these perspectives change depending on your personal situation (I went through a phase when I didnt think very positively of marriage). Although I don't want to get married right away, I definitely look forward to it & view it as something that will be very happy.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">For the married: what were the circumstances under which you decided 'this is the one', how did you know?</div>
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i didn't "know". i took an educated guess. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">What was your wedding itself like...</div>
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<br><br><br>
we had a completely private ceremony in september of 1996, exactly three years after we'd started seeing one another. when i say "completely private", i mean, just him and me. we performed our own ritual in a paganish way.<br><br><br><br>
due to financial circumstances, we ended up tying the knot in a civil ceremony about 6 months later. believe it or not, it was better for our taxes (that year); but has been a detriment to us, tax-wise, ever since. if we hadn't been in such dire financial circumstances that year, we probably would have skipped out on the civil ceremony altogether. we don't even wear rings!<br><br><br><br>
we wanted to have a ceremony to really solidify our deep commitment to one another, that had nothing to do with anything else...familial or cultural expectations. we didn't even tell anyone about our private ceremony for two years! we still celebrate that day as our wedding anniversary, though the civil ceremony warrants a dinner out and some flowers, too.<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">...and what are your secrets to success in your relationship?</div>
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i don't think we have any secrets to success. we are just stubborn, tenacious people who refuse to let the minor things that come up in day-to-day life ruin the long history we have as best friends (and we were, for two years before we ever started dating), lovers, and war buddies. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"> i think that a lot of people are mighty disappointed when they discover that love and marriage aren't all sweetness and light, and when the time comes to do some hard work to keep a relationship together and strong, they'd rather give up and give in, rather than put in the effort. this is, of course, barring those relationships that are out-and-out abusive, either physically, mentally, or spiritually.<br><br><br><br>
i think that huge, "fairy tale" weddings often serve to reinforce the stereotype that marriage and lifelong partnership are "easy". with the huge amount of import put into early courtship, the build-up to a proposal, and then the massive planning and expense of a big wedding, i think people subconciously think of the wedding day as the peak or <i>culmination</i> of all the hard work of the relationship. the day comes, and passes, and suddenly they are exhausted and feel like they have nothing left to look forward to. if people could get their priorities straight, and remember that a wedding isn't the the <i>prize</i> they get after working hard at finding, wooing, and securing a partner, and see it instead as only the <i>very beginning</i> of a very long and likely bumpy road, the divorce rate would probably go down. a happy, lifelong, committed relationship, filled with compromise, communication, trust, and love, is it's own reward.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yep. I agree, Kreeli.<br><br><br><br>
I see too many people who are obsessed with 'the Wedding' rather than 'the marriage'. I know people who I think have honestly never contemplated beyond the honeymoon.<br><br><br><br>
As for ceremonies, etc, I can't see myself in front of a gazillion people in some froufy overpriced frock. I'd feel SO uncomfortable.<br><br><br><br>
In fact, I used to tell my last boyfriend frequently that we could never marry (despite being together for 2 years at that point) because of some of that: his mother was a strong Catholic, and despite his buddhist leanings he still had lots of that good old fashioned guilt- thus, it would have been the family scandal of the century for them if I had not walked down the aisle of their catholic church, in front of all his father's political friends... *shudder*<br><br><br><br>
Then, of course, it would have been War #2 when I refused to put my kids in Sunday school... She kind of thought my paganism was a 'passing faze' I'd eventually get over. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":rolleyes:">
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'd prefer informal dress, but formal enough to feel fancied up a bit, close friends and relatives, and a good party. But as my family on one side alone consists of 40 people, I'm thinkin' it may not happen that way.<br><br><br><br>
Besides, to me, the exchanging of vows is a very private thing. It's not between you and your mother-in-law and her date, it's between you and your spouse-to-be, and that's it.<br><br><br><br>
I'd like thus to get married on a beach afar, as I said, in bare feet, then after a good happy private relaxing time together, come home, and be greeted as a married couple by the friends and family with a nice simple pot-luck shindig.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
The other option that's been suggested recently however, providing Trevor's the man, is to do it all at his Grandfather's estate. Veal Princess knows the place I'm talking about (Cuddy's in Strathroy). We could hang out, play in the gardens and the pool, and I'm sure the Step-Grandmother would be thrilled out of her tree to run about and have things catered, etc etc...
 

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I liked spuds, "Two weddings and a funeral" post. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
My thing with marraige is that I dont' have any positive role models. As far as women in marraiges with children, I know few who are happy. I don't mean to diss the guys, I think men and women are both responsible to a point, but especially once children come, I see women taking on much more work. That is what frightens me. I was one of those kids in school that if there was a group project and I wanted to do well, I'd pick up all the slack for the others. I want to learn to refuse to do more than my fair share before I get married. I want clear expectations. I want serious discussions before I get pregnant.<br><br><br><br>
I see my dad asking my mom if he has clean socks or where is his this or that, like my mom is his mother taking care of a little kid. I don't want that.<br><br><br><br>
But honestly, I think I can have a good marriage, not only bc I have hope of finding a man who is can take care of his own mess, but also bc I don't have any fairy tale illusions about marriage.<br><br><br><br>
I mentioned my friend is getting married. It makes me worried for so many reasons, but it is mostly my own inner issues that make me worry, there's no reason it won't turn out well. I admit, I like looking at the wedding sites and the dresses and stuff. I want to conserve money if I get married. The only thing I'll splurge on is good food for the guests. Indian food. And I know what kind of dress I want. (a cheap one - <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"> )<br><br><br><br>
My friend told me that her fiance promised he'd never cheat on her... unless.... they wern't having sex for three months and she refused therapy. I found this to be a little disturbing, to threaten the possiblity of cheating if she doesn't supply him with sex often enough. I know I'm reading into it. But aren't there tons of letters in advice columns about couples going through dry spells bc they are going through rocky times? If someone thought the dry spell was bad enough to cheat, I'd rather they warn me by discussing a divorce. I don't know.
 

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I definitely agree with Kreeli's two long paragraphs on her secrets to success. As much fun as I hope the events leading up to me eventually becoming married are, I intend to scrutinize as much as I can the seriousness and durability of the relationship. If I find myself saying, "Well, if it gets too hard, we can always get divorced," then I don't think I'd be going into it with the right attitude.<br><br><br><br>
That's not to take the fun out of it, of course. I don't think my ex-boyfriend wanted to think about the long term realities. We just thought way too differently from each other to begin with to make it in real life.<br><br><br><br>
I want to have some form of a church wedding, but I don't think I want a huge ceremony in front of hundreds of people. 100 in attendence or less would be best, and I want to see what the resale shops have in the way of dresses. I could totally see myself in some funky, offbeat white dress that doesn't look much like a wedding dress other than it's white, long, and perhaps not practical for every day attire.<br><br><br><br>
Remember the hippie wedding that didn't happen in Runaway Bride? I like the trampoline and flower garland in the hair idea, but I know my family would pass out if I put the words "trampoline" and "wedding" in the same sentence. I'm not opposed to shocking my family, but at the same time, I don't want to have to fight tooth-and-nail over my wedding. It's not my parents so much as my grandparents who I know would try to control everything. I really hope my grandparents are still alive to see me get married, but I also hope they keep their hands out of the preparations.<br><br><br><br>
What about the whole marriage and surname issue? Right now, I'm expecting to become a hyphenated person, and I would be thrilled if my husband would also hyphenate. Kreeli, I'm really curious about what you chose from the surname options. I should go reread the feminism and abortion threads because you probably said in one of those, but right now I'm way too tired to go and look for it.
 

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heh.<br><br><br><br>
actually, my maiden name was of course taken from my bio-dad, who was a wife-beating, small time drug dealer and pedophile who abandoned us when i was three. i carried his name throughout my life, but when the opportunity presented itself to easily and quickly adopt a new last name, i jumped at it. so yes, i have my husband's last name. and i'm proud to have it.
 

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Kreeli,<br><br>
That's awesome... well, sort of. I'm sorry your bio-dad was like that, but I'm glad you have made a surname choice you're happy with. I've been researching the effects of various surname choices, and so far what I've gathered in these academic reports is as long as you follow the reasons that make sense to you, the surname you pick will be irrelevant for how happy your marriage is or what level of intimacy is acheived.
 

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the divorce rate for christian couples who pray together every day is 1/100 compared to 40-50/100 in the general pop. Just an intresting fact you might want to know.
 

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I've heard that before, magates. If correlation means causation in this case, then it looks good for couples like my parents. (They're going strong after 23 years.)<br><br><br><br>
Being somewhat of a skeptic, I have to ask what the stats are on say, devout Buddhist couples, or anyone else who takes seriously their faith commitment. I've never to my knowlege heard any stats on Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim divorces.
 

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I would imagine some of the beleifs that cause a couple to pray together are also the same beliefs that would discourage them from getting divorced. They didn't say anything about happiness, did they?<br><br><br><br>
However, I would think that any couple that had a souce of common inspiration in life, whatever it may be- religion, a political cause, love of nature, whatever, would have some benefit in their marriage, that they are sharing what is most important with each other.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I agree that those who pray together are probably more like to see divorce as out of the question, regardless of the happiness of their marriage. And agree that common spirituality may indeed provide solace for many... as per above.<br><br><br><br>
Trevor hates his last name. He associates it with family members he has less than positive feelings towards (much like Kreeli above) so we have discussed that if we were to marry, he would probably take my name, rather than vice versa.<br><br><br><br>
I always though I never wanted to change my name to that of a husbands. I felt that was a very chauvinist approach in the modern day, as my own family ought to be as valid and respected as his. I would feel somehow odd not being "me" anymore, especially since I identify so much with being a member of my Dad's family. Especially in our little town, my name was like a badge: Oh you must be one of those ____ kids! You've all got the same sense of humour!!<br><br><br><br>
The other alternative we've discussed is mutually taking on a new name. For example, we could both become Cuddys (can you say, nose up the bum of the rich relatives?) as Cuddy is Trevor's mother's maiden name.<br><br><br><br>
But I do like the idea of the our new potential family getting my name. It's very celtic in tradition. Cause, I mean, think about it:<br><br><br><br>
Prior to DNA anyway, it wasn't always so easy to be 100% certain who the father of a child was- but you could generally be quite sure who your mom was, judging by who you popped out of!<br><br><br><br>
It made for a fairly error free way to trace bloodlines, which the judeo-christian system couldn't always do.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by Avalon</i><br><br><b>Inspired by Thalia's comments on Tame's posting in the "Warning to all Men" thread:<br><br><br><br><i><b>'The female(male?) may even be shrewd enough to entrap the unsuspecting male(female) into a longer term form of servitude and punishment referred to as "marriage." '<br><br>
As you can tell, I have mixed feelings about marriage.</b></i><br><br><br><br><br><br>
... What, are ALL women supposedly waiting around with the sole purpose of entrapping a man? Are we simply sitting around waiting for Prince Charming to come and sweep us away so we can wear the big white wedding dress at the big white wedding??<br><br><br><br><br><br>
But I'm always interested to know:<br><br><br><br>
For the unmarried: what are your thoughts on marriage, and/or wedding ideas/hopes/dreams, if you've ever had them?<br><br><br><br>
Consider this an all things marriage/wedding related thread.</b></div>
</div>
<br><br><br>
A couple of thoughts from someone who has never been married:<br><br><br><br>
1) I used to belong to a "couples" e-mail list. The most frequently recommended books on the list were books by John M. Gottman, Ph.D., <b>Why Marriages Succeed or Fail ... And How You Can Make Yours Last</b> and <b>The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work</b> , among his other books.<br><br><br><br>
Gottman has studied over 2000 married couples for over 20 years. He has become known for, among other things, his "Love Lab" where he videotapes how people in couples relate to one another. He claims he can predict whether couples will divorce after watching and listening to them for just five minutes.<br><br><br><br>
I think it would be useful for both you and Trevor to read his books before you get married.<br><br><br><br>
2) I don't believe in "perfect" mates or "Prince Charming" or "Princess Charming." I think probably most marriages can be made to work if both partners are willing to work at it. I think the "Mr. Right/Miss Right" myth is destructive of marriages, because as soon as they encounter problems they will think they married the wrong person, and will have to go back out and find the <b>real</b> Mr. Right or Ms. Right.<br><br><br><br>
3) I believe divorce is a very financially and personally destructive process. I think most couples who get divorced underestimate the destructiveness of this process.<br><br><br><br>
4) Although Tame's post was a joke, I was brought up with the "entrapment" message. I am not entirely sure why.<br><br><br><br>
I do know that my father's older brother met the woman who was to become his wife in Connecticut. At the time of their marriage, she was visibly pregnant. So, my cousin was born "legitimate" but was conceived out of wedlock. Now, flash forward about 50 years. My grandmother was still angrily calling my aunt "the Connecticut whore" because my cousin was conceived out of wedlock.<br><br><br><br>
I got innumerable lectures from my father about women trying to "trap" men into marriage, about not fathering a child out of wedlock and "disgracing" the family, etc. And everytime some guy in our neighborhood did get his girlfriend pregnant and they "had to" get married, <b>I</b> would hear an angry tirade and get another lecture on the subject.<br><br><br><br>
This has always been something of a mystery to me as to why my father was so intent on giving me this message. (My father married my mother after he graduated from college, and I was not born until about three years after they were married, so none of this "entrapment" related to my parents' relationship.) This is just a mystery to me that I have been unable to figure out.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">2) I don't believe in "perfect" mates or "Prince Charming" or "Princess Charming." I think probably most marriages can be made to work if both partners are willing to work at it. I think the "Mr. Right/Miss Right" myth is destructive of marriages, because as soon as they encounter problems they will think they married the wrong person, and will have to go back out and find the real Mr. Right or Ms. Right.<br></div>
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I couldn't agree more - my idea of a perfect relationship is where we're both willing to work out any problem that comes up, not that the relationship is 100% problem-free - in fact, I would be worried about such a relationship, seems to me that things would stagnate after a while. I think anyone who would quit a relationship everytime they hit a lil bump in the road needs a serious reality check.
 

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Joe, I don't see a mystery. Your father did not want his son to embarrass your family the way that his brother had.<br><br><br><br>
No one should have put up with the grandmother calling the woman a whore. I really dislike anti-women women.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by mushroom</i><br><br><b>Joe, I don't see a mystery. Your father did not want his son to embarrass your family the way that his brother had.<br><br></b></div>
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It's a question of degree. This subject was harped on to the point where it became almost an obsession.
 
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