Why I Want A Wedding Not A Marriage

I love a good party. And a wedding is a grand excuse for a party.  Coral bridesmaid dresses, white wedding gown, Reggae Music, the Electric Slide, the Wobble and the Cupid Shuffle; family and friends; honeymooning in an exotic island; riding around in stretch White Cadillac Escalade with my favorite girls. All eyes on Yours Truly? (Sigh) I’ve gone to Heaven.

I believe in the institution of marriage but understand that social union involves a lot of work that I am not willing to invest. Each time I log onto Facebook, my newsfeed greets me with stories of friends tying the knot. I’m happy for them and anxiously click on their page, view all of their engagement and wedding photos, actively searching for a hints about how they met. I notice each and every detail in their pictures: wedding color scheme, the ring’s cut, the groom’s cumber bond. Everything. The couple appears ecstatic, grinning from ear to ear. But in a matter of weeks, after the couple has returned from their honeymoon. They update their status “No one told me that a marriage would be so much work!” A conversation that I initiate, “How’s married life?” ends with, a wide-mouthed response and he utters, “A lot of work. I wasn’t prepared for this.”

Marriage? A lot of Work? Oh, okay then, “no thank you.” I’m lazy and would rather be a ball with no chain, an independent woman, a free spirt. Here are my reasons why:

Marriages take years of preparation. Weddings don’t.

Marriage is the coming together of two people with personality flaws, expectations, bad experiences, hang-ups, regrets, and bad habits. Each person enters marital bliss with baggage, baggage that took a lifetime to create.  Both parties thrust their baggage upon their spouse, as if it were her spouse’s fault that she shops too much. She was a shopaholic long before their wedding day, but yet he is the scapegoat for her enormous credit card debt. Baggage was the result of bad experiences as a child and former relationships; no one acquires baggage overnight. It is the result of habits you developed as a child, as a teenager and it followed you into adulthood.

Weddings require one year of planning. That’s it. And if you’re like my highly organized friend, it could only take you one week. For a wedding, all that’s required is the dress, floral arrangements and some logistics, wedding invites and you’re done.

Marriage lasts one lifetime. Weddings last one day.

Well, let me take that back. Some weddings last a couple days, like the wedding I attended in India. But traditional American weddings  usually last one day. Marriages are usually intended to last a lifetime.  I can sense a lot of you offering the option of divorce. I acknowledge that, but I don’t really consider divorce an option when I think about marriage. Considering divorce is like planning to fail, and I’m too busy focused on success that really, I don’t contemplate failure.

Weddings are quick. You’re in. Dress up. See long lost friends. Drink and be merry. Dance til you can’t anymore and you’re done.

Chemistry fades. But marital commitments don’t.

One of my favorite things in this world are love stories. Any type. Romantic movies, romance novels, romantic songs, real life love stories, videographies – anything that conveys a story about how a couple met and fell in love. I am always amused about the life circumstances that bring a couple together: a car accident, a friend’s introduction, a random encounter at a bar. One thing that all these stories have in common is that they all start the same way. They met, felt butterflies, and had a gut feeling she/he was “The One.”  The chemistry was off the charts and it just felt “so right.” So why deny something that feels so good? The couple gets married. Weeks, months, or years into the marriage, the once happily married bride and groom begin to bicker. She used to love the fact that he was talkative, but now, after a few months of marriage, he talks too much. He used to love to wine and dine her, but now all he wants is a homecooked meal and she can’t cook. The chemistry deteriorates but those vows that the bride and groom uttered at the altar, they are still in effect.

Marriage destroys the agenda of the independent woman. Wedding doesn’t.

“Miss Independent” by Ne-yo was my mantra during the time of its release in 2008. Man, if any song could have describe me at that time, it was definitely that song. The song presented me with a bit of a conflict, however. On one hand, I wanted to be married one day, but on the other hand, I enjoyed being independent too much to be tied down. I asked my mom if you could be married and independent. She says, “it’s impossible.” She was right.

The foundation for marriage is the commitment each party has to one another. You depend on him; he depends on you. You can’t have a successful marriage and do things your way while he does things his way. If that was the case, then there would be no need for marriage. We can all stay unmarried forever. I don’t wanna give up my Miss Independent card. I want to pay my own bills, make my own decisions, and not have to consider how my decisions are going to affect someone else.

When marriages end, there is bitterness and regret. Weddings end in happiness.

Ever left a wedding angry? (Well, I have but the reason had nothing to do with the wedding itself and everything to do with a personal conflict I was dealing with at the time.) Weddings usually don’t make people angry. Weddings are joyous events; they lighten one’s spirits. They inspire people to continue searching for the love of their life. Marriages, on the other hand, end with people falling into depression; some contemplate suicide. The children are hurt, harboring resentments to parents and may experience trust issues afterwards. Just ugly. When weddings end, the situation is beautiful.

I don’t want to be married and given the fact that 50% of marriages end in divorce, I’m sure a lot of you would agree with me too. Weddings are a lot more fun; a lot less work; and a lot more appealing than a lifetime of marriage. No?

Author’s Note:

For those of you take this post to heart, know that I am only being sarcastic; I am poking fun of those that spend more time preparing for a brief event rather than a lifetime commitment. Yes, I realize that you cannot have a wedding without a marriage. Yes, I do want to get married one day. Like what you’ve read? Listen to the inspiration for this post: Love, Sex, & Dating Series by Adam Stanley of Buckhead Church.

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4 thoughts on “Why I Want A Wedding Not A Marriage

  1. Very nice/well put together Jess! I never separated wedding/marriage before. I always thought wedding/marriage went together- if I got married, I would have a nice wedding. After reading your post, I can see how just a wedding without the extra work (marriage) would be more appealing. Marriage is a lifelong commitment/investment that takes a lot of work. While I still dream of getting married to that special “one” in the future, I am not ready for marriage today, not at all. Just a wedding, just a 1 day investment-music, drinks, nice dress sounds like so much fun! !

  2. As someone who is currently engaged and planning a wedding, best believe, I’ve put in work in preparation for my marriage. Marriage is a HUGE step that shouldn’t be taken lightly, but at the same time, you have to have fun with it because it’s a lifetime (well, it’s supposed to be…Kim K. doesn’t agree). Additionally, I also love a party so to me, my wedding isn’t just a wedding…it’s a production 🙂

  3. Thanks for your comment! And yes I agree – marriage is serious business but there is no reason why you can’t have fun! Lol. at your Production! I can’t wait to see photos.

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