Why is it that it is so difficult for people to comprehend that there are options and alternatives out there to the way that they can live their lives?
Why do you have to get married? How is it that society has created this expectation that you are not complete unless you are married? That word holds so much more meaning to people than what it actually represents. I would bet that is one of the reasons why this whole gay marriage thing is such an issue.
Why is it not acceptable to be in a long-term relationship of commitment without that word?
Let’s see, what does the word represent in reality? It represents a piece of paper on file at the local courthouse. This paper says that you are joined in matrimony and that the laws of matrimony (obviously those laws that are on the book in your State of residence) apply to your union.
Where does it say anything about Love? Commitment? Acceptance? Tolerance? Patience? Compromise? Companionship? Sharing? Equality? All of those qualities that are the actual result of that long term commitment. Nowhere. These are the fruits of long-term commitment relationships whether or (hold on to your seats, ladies) not, you are married.
So why do people look at me in horror when I tell them that I am not married and I have no intensions of being married?
I’m serious. It’s a look of HORROR! Like I am no self-respecting woman if I am not spending my every waking and sleeping moments in search of that holy grail.
Some people have the courage to confront me on this abhorrence right on meeting, others wait until they know me a little longer, like they are afraid to offend me by asking the question right off the bat.
Here are the responses I store in my bag (refresher, the question is Why don’t you get married?):
1. Why DO you get married?
2. Why did YOU get married?
3. Why SHOULD I get married?
4. What does marriage give me that I don’t have? (there is absolutely nothing with which that question can be answered – go on, I dare you… try! Not you, Mom – don’t you dare say anything about the South Dakota retirement system!)
Here are some of the things I have that you don’t:
1. we define the terms of our relationship, they are not defined by the State of Arizona
2. my Partner comes home to me every day because he wants to
3. when we hit a bump, and select to work through it and renew our commitment to each other, its because we want to
I could go on, but I think I made my point.
Sometimes people find out that my mother is not married either; and I get this all-knowing “Oh!” like “oh, this runs in the family”, “oh, you weren’t taught good family values”, “oh, you come from one of those hippy bohemian families.
Blagh! I just hate that people can’t accept difference.