Thursday, September 22, 2011

When You Know It's Wrong...

A friend of mine posted this article yesterday. It's called Why So Many of Us Marry The Wrong Guy. She claims 30% of the women she talked to knew they were making a mistake on their wedding day. I can easily believe this. She talks about how we can rationalize anything siting the wrong job, a ridiculous car payment and dating the wrong guy for a few. I can identify with that, for sure. It's the most common reasons the author gives for women talking themselves into a doomed marriage where I differ in opinion, slightly.

Here are the top five reason according to her research:

  1. We've dated for so long I don't want to waste all the time we have invested in the relationship.
  2. I don't want to be alone.
  3. He'll change after we get married.
  4. It is too late, too embarrassing and/or too expensive to call off the wedding
  5. He is a really nice guy; I don't want to hurt his feelings.
I think these are all in the rankings, but she doesn't mention babies! In my group of friends there were a few of us who started to hear the biological clock ticking (advance maternal age is 35) and thought this relationship's working let's get married so we can have babies. I know for me my window of opportunity was super short on making a new little human. I was acutely aware of my short window, the state of my relationship and wanting to do things the "right way".

This is why I did not want a quickie marriage when SURPRISE there'll be a new life in a little over 8mos. I wanted the baby and I wanted to raise it with Michael, but that was not mutually exclusive with marriage. Don't get me wrong here, I was fairly certain he was the one I'd marry, but I wanted to make sure I would marry him for my reasons, not because of societal pressure. Once Riley came there was a horrific surgery to survive and then when it seemed like we really had a handle on "for worse" we were both ready for marriage.

I don't think everyone is as strong as I am, though. I think most woman (regardless of their wishes) think pregnancy makes marriage a requirement. I find that sad and frustrating because I have witnessed what divorce does to those kids. Like the author points out, there will always be doubts but if you have more doubt than certainty reconsider.

I've talked about the third reason the author gives before: First Thing's First. I think we are all manipulated by the fact that the fairy tales always end with a wedding. We expect the pumpkin carriage to drive off into an ideal existence after "I do". I also believe people don't change until they are ready to and no marriage certificate or baby is going to "make them". It's not just women, Mike's first marriage was a combination of pressure to marry because of the baby and "she'll change" mentality. It has nothing to do with intelligence. We want to believe in love.

There really isn't anything wrong with believing in love it's just that we are an impatient bunch who would rather marry Mr. Right Now (since we have all the time invested, etc) than wait until it really feels like the right decision. I remember thinking in my teen years "If I'm not married by 30 I'm not going to do it." I think we're impatient society (hello instant streaming videos, etc), but beyond that woman especially want to be young brides and mothers.

Anyway, use your heads and your hearts ladies. That's my two cents on the subject. I'm 110% confident that I've made the right choice (& that it will not be easy).


  1. Are you implying that women who have the ideals and faith to believe in marriage for kids' sake are not as strong as those shacking up with their "baby daddies?" I disagree strongly. I am certain, though I don't know the specific statistics, that serial "shack-up" daddies, who are often in and out of kids' lives more than married daddies cause way more harm to children. I've seen (in my personal, life and in the news) the harm that comes when women play "family" without a strong FAMILY commitment. Stability, family and marriage are ideals that I believe in. I think the fact that some people LIVE by those ideals is a good thing, not weak.

  2. Absolutely not. I am merely saying if the child is the only reason you're marrying it is often a doomed marriage from what I've seen. I was only expressing my hope that woman commit to their partner and their child with their whole heart rather than rushing into something that haven't considered because they feel they "have to". Ideally everyone should be ready to make a life long commitment before they conceive.
    I agree being a good wife and mother takes unending strength. I just hate to see people go in to with blinders on and regret their choices.

  3. In the end whatever the reason if you and your spouse are both in it "until death do you part" there's no right and wrong. I'm sorry if I made it sound that way. I only meant it's always ok to reflect on a decision this big so you can make it with your whole heart.


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