Tuesday, February 07, 2012


We're a week away from Valentine's Day and a question from the past popped into my mind. Why do people get married?

I had this topic as a college writing assignment, and to be honest, I'm still not sure of the answer. Which is different than why do we strive for the Happily Ever After. That I could have written about. And, hey, I do! lol

But the ceremony itself? I think it's because of tradition and societal expectations. For sure, a piece of paper doesn't hold all marriages together, but the trouble of ending one can be an obstacle to just walking away.

Matthew McConaughey is marrying the mother of his children after being together for several years. Wouldn't one think they already established a solid relationship? (No, mentioning Matthew wasn't just an excuse to put up this amazingly sexy picture of him.) Don't Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell have a successful long-term relationship without the official document that sanctions it?

Sanctions. Hmmm. That takes us back to societal expectations, religious beliefs, parental pressure, etc.

I loved my wedding. I used to watch the tape of it every year on my anniversary until the kids became bored to tears with me pointing out their relatives...and they were only toddlers at the time. I had the whole shebang and don't regret it. But then, I'm a traditional girl.

The ceremony must be important because people are fighting about same sex marriage rights across the country. Those that want laws approved must value marriage (and want their lifestyle validated). Those that oppose such laws must have feelings about what marriage means that surpasses a couple being together forever.

So, why do you think people choose marriage or don't choose marriage? It's a highly personal choice, but Matthew's proposal made me curious. What did he feel was missing from his relationship that being married would add?

I'd appreciate your thoughts on this.

Megan Kelly


Savannah Rose said...

Maybe it was that "completed" family unit idea from society? After 20 + years why did Shannon Tweed and Gene Simmons finally tie the knot? Completion. It's society's way of thinking of the family unit and some give into the pressure of pleasing society instead of our own beliefs. I personally believe in marriage but some are against the idea that a piece of paper "completes" us. I have a cousin that married the mother of his children twice. Legally...not renewals. As long as they were not legally married, they didn't fight, but as soon as the paper was signed and stamped, WWIII. Could it have been the pressure of the paper?

Great topic.

Megan Kelly said...

Interesting reaction of your cousins, Savannah. Perhaps paper equaled pressure for them.
I'm a believer too. I looked half decent in my wedding pix--that bridal glow, ya know. :)
Thanks for sharing.

Jean O'B said...

It's a public binding committment. Most of us want a formal "beginning" to anything important. We also seem to need recognition of endings, thus funerals, divorce parties, etc. Heck, we even celebrate our pets' birthdays and often give them funerals. I think it's a human nature way of publicly signifying importance and change.

linda s said...

For my family, its easy. Baptism, first communion, marriage, funeral rights. Sacraments.

Now pregant unwed women are no longer being fired and removed from professional registers for moral turpitude and children of unwed mothers no longer have the big B word stamped in red across their birth certificates. Now, it becomes a question of personal choice.

As over half of my nieces and nephews have chosen living together over marriage, I'm a firm believer that a HEA doesn't have to include a marriage proposal.

Megan Kelly said...

Jean, thanks for stopping by. Public validation to signify importance is a great insight. I really like that. :)

Megan Kelly said...

Linda S, religious beliefs have a lot of influence on us. But I also agree a couple can be committed w/o the ceremony or official document. I'm just big into HEA, no matter the form. Thanks for you comment.