Only one person chose to share their thoughts on my royal wedding blog, but many of you sent me a message.
Thank you, feedback is always welcome, and my only wish is that more of you would post publicly.
The common theme in my messages is that I am not a romantic. I smile because there is just no truth to that. Romance of course is subjective, but I have the romance gene, and most times it is in overdrive.
Another common theme is that I do not believe in love. I absolutely believe in love, happily ever after, and the concept that two people can commit to a lifetime together.
What I do not believe is that we should be furthering a fantasy that virtually none of us can obtain.
My opinion on marriage was founded in what I saw as examples of marriage. As a little girl I too bought into the concept that there was one true love out there for me, who would ride up on his white horse, sweep me off my feet, and we would roam the countryside together in love’s bliss. As an adult, I believe in love, and it is a very different concept than the ideals we drill into the heads of our daughters.
We spend far too much time teaching our daughters that what is important for them is to have the fantasy wedding and the husband, rather than teaching our daughters their worth, and their value. We are teaching our daughters that to be someone they must be the wife of someone rather than to be someone in their own right. That is a problem for me. I am not upset that these two people chose to marry, I am upset at the values we impose on our children and how that will impact them at a later date.
I get the impression that people see me like this:
(the meltdown occurs at 4:30)
In reality I am more like this:
I freely admit that my examples to look up to have been less than stellar. I have spoken about the women who raised me. A household full of women tells a story in and of itself. There were few male examples around me, and in my immediate family there are zero examples of a ‘successful’ marriage. That did not affect my ability to believe in love and marriage it simply got me to a point where I could be practical about it.
It opened my eyes to the concept that what is most important is the commitment between the couple. If the appreciation, dedication, affection, respect, lust, and all the components of companionship are present in a relationship, the marriage license is not that important.
My mother, my father, my brothers, my friends even (with two exceptions) have had failed marriages. The white dress, the reception, and the chicken or beef choices did not keep those couples together. Just like the horse drawn carriage to Buckingham Palace will not keep William and Kate together. What will keep them, or any other couple together has absolutely zero to do with the pageantry of the wedding ceremony.
I have watched people that I care about, people who thought they were in love, go through the stress of planning a traditional wedding to be ready for divorce court in 6 months. It is not cute.
Do all marriages end badly? OF COURSE NOT! Enough of them do though, that we should ask ourselves what is truly important.
The wedding ceremony when done in the way it was done by the royals today is not for the couple, it is for the public. Unless you plan on inviting the public into your marriage, I ask why bother?
Are you any less married if you have a 10 minute ceremony in front of a justice?
I get that people want to celebrate their love, love SHOULD be celebrated. I question why do we go to such extremes to show the world how much we ‘love’ one another.
The fantasy is not that people fall in love and want to spend the rest of their lives together. That happens every day. Hell it even happened to ME.
The fantasy is that women should want to have the wedding they saw today, and that it somehow matters more if it occurs in that manner, than it would any other way.
We teach our daughters that they get one day in their lives to be a ‘princess’ rather than teaching our daughters that they are a princess every day of their lives.
We teach our daughters that an $8,000 dress, a $6,000 reception for 300 people, and a $5,000 honeymoon on Grand Cayman is what should be valued.
Are we spending the same amount of time teaching our daughters that happiness can not be found outside of themselves?
Are we spending the same amount of time teaching our daughters that their education is more valuable than an emerald cut diamond?
Are we teaching our daughters that relationships are work? That after the rice is thrown, and the music of the last dance has faded that there is real work to be done in a relationship to keep it growing over time?
Are we teaching our daughters that to love is a beautiful thing, but that love doesn’t keep the lights on so let’s pick a partner in life who has a plan of action?
That is what I mean when I denounce the fantasy and say embrace the reality.
Happily ever after doesn’t mean you will live a life full of unicorns and glitter. Happily ever after is not guaranteed by the length of the train on your dress.
To have to and to hold from this day forward. In sickness and in health. For better or worse. For richer for poorer. To love honor and cherish. Until death do us part.
Those are some deep words if you pay attention, and having the royal air force fly overhead as you kiss has nothing to do with the work that it takes to live up to those words.
I could still care less about the royal wedding, or any wedding for that matter.
I care more about what happens when the reception hall is empty and the Visa bill comes in 30 days.