huh. it's my partner's birthday. now you've got me worried.
how do you all feel about marriage? i've been with my partner for ages (soon 7 years), we have been living together for ca. 3 years (with an interruption), and we are definitely making plans as "we", including stuff like kids, coordinating careers, etc. BUT although this is def. a long term thing, i don't know if i'd want to get married. a) it's complicated - what do you do about names and stuff? b) i'd feel like i'm going back on my feminist principles c) i don't really see the point. BUT i know that he feels that it would be convenient, at the latest when the kids thing becomes concrete. which could be soon (biological clock is ticking). i am confused and think i would just prefer he never asked. how do you all feel about these things?
I can understand your feelings, Shani. That is why my now-ex and I were living together for four years before getting married--a lot of ambivalence about the whole thing. Several years of marriage later, we parted ways, and now have a distant but completely amicable relationship.
I think that marriage changes people's expectations. I have heard the saying, You may not be traditional but marriage is. I think that marriage is a loaded concept, people have unconscious ideas about how it all ought to work--ideas that they might not even know they have, and those weigh towards very traditional roles, which is hard if you are not in that sort of relationship.
Plus, people who live together before marriage divorce at a rate much higher than people who did not...
The name thing is easy. Keep whatever name you want. Use whatever you want to socially or at work. Lots of people don't change their name now, so it should be whatever suits you.
I would say--if you feel ambivalent, don't do it. but if you think you might want to marry, go into some kind of premarital counselling with your partner to air out your ambivalence and issues BEFORE you decide to get married.
Hi shani. I have no desire whatsoever to get married. I have always kept an open mind as regards changing my mind about things, but that is one thing that I'm certain about. I don't want to have kids either. You know how they say that every girl dreams of their wedding day? Well, that doesn't apply to me. In fact, when I think of marriage, I get a sinking feeling in my stomach and feel terrified and depressed! Some people view you as a biological anomaly if you say you don't want marriage and kids, but that's something I've felt strongly about for some time, and I've already passed the supposed age when your 'biological clock' is meant to kick in full gear. I don't feel depressed at the thought of not having those things. I just want different things which make me just as happy.
I've been with my partner for 6 plus years, lived together for 4.5... and we have no intention of getting married. I respect people who do, it's their choice.. but as we have no intention of ever having kids (all maternal feelings are projected towards the cat), don't ever want the Mrs title or my partners surname and can be faithful without a ring and a peice of paper.. well, it's just not 'for us'....
I feel it's a shame some people look down on long term couples as somehow 'less committed' than those who are married... However that's their opinion, it doesn's bother us so we won't be pressured in to anything.. we're happy
PLUS.. if I wanted to get married, I would propose.. regardless of the date
The same sorts of pressures you feel before you are married re: kids/marriage, etc. only intensify in some ways after you are married--then the pressure to have kids, behave in a "married" way, etc. really take off! ( at least in my experience). Although I made the decision to keep my name ( I hate the phrase "maiden name", its just (£&$_("£ name!) I was annoyed by the number of people who insisted that I was Mrs. Joe Bloggs, as if both my first and last name were erased upon being married. I thought ( for myself) how horrible if your entire identity as a person is changed by marriage, divorce, re-marriage--why not just have the same name through out? I had decided about the age of 18 to never change my name--the first time I had a conscious thought that it MIGHT change upon marriage.
Having been married, I don't know if I would get married again. I had some of the happiest years of my life being married, I will say--despite how it ended--but I don't know if I would do it again. Long term partnership, yes. Marriage??! Who wants to invite a court and a judge into your private life? That is what a divorce is. My ex and I were able to resolve our differences legally and present a settlement agreement to the court, but it still needed to be approved by a judge who did not know us, etc..if the two of us were fine with the settlement, both being well-educated, lawyers, grown-ups, why should a court have the power to nay say the agreement?
So those who say that they are ambivalent about marriage--I share that view. There IS ( or can be) something different about a marriage than just living together ( it had some positives as well as negatives for me...) but the overall package is not an attractive idea. Marriage was an institution designed before women were not dying off in droves in childbirth, did not always work outside the home ( I realize some did!), were barred from many trades and professions, and could not vote, and were not educated. The ideas of marriage have not really changed, though society has. I think the rate at which marriages end in divorce indicate that marriage is not fit for today's society, and needs a radical overhaul.
One of my friends is currently going through a divorce whilst also just starting his PhD. However, because his wife has objected to the divorce, it looks like it's going to drag out for at least two years. He's so dispirited right now. Even though they're living apart, he told me he doesn't feel he can truly move on with his life until the divorce goes through. He's worried that his PhD is going to suffer immensely because of the emotional turmoil of the divorce.
Olivia, do you know what's odd? I post on a child-free forum (and no, it's not all bitter spinsters who hate kids or men.. most are married and there's a lot of guys who post as well) A lot of women share the same view about not changing their surname, more than I have ever countered in 'real' life and it seems that the more educated they are academically, the more passionate they feel about keeping it.
The BBC printed an article a year or so ago stating that 40% of women graduates won't have kids by the time they are 35 and 1 in 3 will never have kids...
I've been married for 10 years and we lived together for over a year before that. It's my first marriage but not my husband's. I think if one person really wants to get married it is ahrd for a relationship to continue once the other has said that's not what they want. Like most things - it's agreement that's important.
I didn't hink I was interested in being married and got very agitated leading up to the event - but really settled into it afterwards and I think it suits me. We are different nationalities and were living overseas so it made our lives a lot simpler to be married.
Masters DegreesSearch For Masters Degrees
An active and supportive community.
Support and advice from your peers.
Your postgraduate questions answered.
Use your experience to help others.
Enter your email address below to get started with your forum account
Enter your username below to login to your account
An email has been sent to your email account along with instructions on how to reset your password. If you do not recieve your email, or have any futher problems accessing your account, then please contact our customer support.
or continue as guest