I’m not sure why, but marriage and weddings are something that society absolutely loves. We are all about eating that shit right up. There are countless TV shows, movies, and publications devoted to the idea of marriage and, well, weddings. What I am failing to understand is why these things have become so commercialized and materialized, primarily weddings.
From the time a woman enters into a relationship, mass media and society has her planning everything out. When the right time to say “I love you” is. When it’s okay to move in with each other. And when to start expecting a ring. And lately, it seems like everybody has been speeding that process up much faster than they should be. I can’t wrap my head around why marriage has become more of a finish line and everyone is sprinting.
In a time where social media is dominant, it’s easy to see where everybody else is in life. It’s even easier to compare your wedding and your marriage to others’. It has turned weddings into competitions and marriages into one-upping each other. When in reality, your wedding should be a special day to celebrate the love you and your significant other have for each other and your marriage should be about the bond and love you share.
It’s not about the flowers. Or the seating arrangement. It’s not about how well your bridesmaids are matching. It’s not even about the cake or the centerpieces. It’s about spending a day surrounded by people you love. No one cares that Cousin Jackie wore a too tight, too short dress, or that your “friend” Jessica wore a white dress and “stole your thunder.” No one will even notice enough to care that the floral arrangements didn’t turn out exactly as you had pictured them.
It’s not a bad thing to want to look stunning on your wedding day or to want things to go relatively according to plan. After all, you are paying a lot of money for it. But what I am saying is that it’s a huge problem if you’re going to turn into a total Bridezilla over someone not sitting at their assigned table or if the florist used a shade of blue that was just a tad too light for the accents on the arrangements. If you honestly believe that the future of your marriage is legitimately affected by any of these things, then perhaps you need to rethink the idea of even getting married. If you’re willing to pitch a fit or even get mildly upset about small details that no one will likely even notice, let alone remember, then maybe you’re taking the wedding too seriously and your marriage not seriously enough.
These are all material things. Your love isn’t defined by how well you can throw a party. The future of your marriage isn’t determined on how well things go off without a hitch, but your behavior and reaction to it definitely could. Maybe we shouldn’t be spending so much money on these things. If we get back to the root of what’s really important, maybe we won’t be so concerned with having the trendiest wedding of the year, or the most bitching wedding dance. If we can strip those things down, we can be completely focused on each other and the road ahead of us. You’ll also save yourself the headache of months upon months of relentless planning. And for what? One night. But what about the rest of your lives together? Maybe starting to plan and save for that instead of the one night that’s starting to become more for the rest of the world than it is for you, isn’t a bad idea.
The point is, do what’s right for you and not because the entire world is telling you to or pressuring you to do it. If you want to hand over cash like an ATM for the perfect fairytale wedding, then good for you. And if you want to elope? Then good for you, too. But it’s time we consider why exactly we’re doing these things: do I want this? Is society telling me I should want it? Or do I want it because I care about what people think?
Feature image via WeHeartIt