Here’s a bit of my personal truth. I don’t want to get married. I never have. I didn’t daydream about what it would be like as a little girl. I didn’t plot and plan to acquire that elusive diamond ring as a young adult. I was busy thinking about other things. I still am but every so often I’ll turn on the news to some politician saying stupid things or I’ll have a conversation with a friend that gets me thinking. Marriage. Is it a friend or foe to modern-day women?
The Economic Factor
Think back to the 2012 Presidential Election Season. Do you remember when the conversation turned towards poverty and Republican sentiments about the poor? Remember the 47% comment Mitt Romney made? Well, Rick Santorum said something that has stuck with me to this day. According to him, to get single mothers out of poverty what we have to do (and I’m paraphrasing here) is get them married. Married people are more well off so ibso-facto, marriage is like birth control for poverty!
Contrary to what Rick Santorum may think, marriage doesn’t prevent poverty. Household income has more to do with the number of working inhabitants than it does their marital status. If you put two people (or three or four) in the same home and they each have a full-time job that pays benefits, then of course they’ll make more money than one working person! It’s simple math.
Following the more bodies more money logic, then polygamous households have even more money. So….all you people only married to one person are really not making good choices. Think of how much more you’d be able to contribute in taxes. You wouldn’t need all those tax breaks and welfare if only you married a few more people.
The Respectability Quotient
A good friend of mine asked me once if I would ever marry a man who’d been divorced 5 times. Without really thinking I said, “Sure! He’s got tons of experience having done it wrong so many times!” I don’t have to tell you that she looked at me like I was crazy.
Marriage is the only thing that the old adage “practice makes perfect” doesn’t apply to because people who have a lot of “practice” are generally thought of as flawed.
The Respectability Quotient is also related to the procreation objective. If you want to have kids then you must want to get married. Because obviously no one wants to raise children in a “broken home.” Another term I absolutely hate. WTF is a broken home? Who determines it doesn’t work and how the you-kn0w-what would they know unless they were in the home?
The Sexual Health Argument
Get married fast and stay married because there’s a ton of diseases going around. That’s right because married people ONLY EVER have sex with each other. Adultery is just a myth! Yup, mmhmm.
A friend of mine (actually an ex-boyfriend) brought this up when we were chatting about how his current girlfriend was dropping hints about getting married. He didn’t really want to be a married person but he didn’t want to date other people either because he was afraid he’d catch something.
If you ask me, this still isn’t a good enough reason. This is when you take advantage of protection, STD tests, and mandatory waiting periods.
The Dream of Happily Ever After
Here it is, the solitary reason that little girls everywhere dream of walking down the aisle. I’m going to quote an unusual source now. Prepare yourself.
I spent last weekend binge-watching the 3rd season of Braxton Family Values and Tamar Braxton single-handedly revived the dream of marriage all by herself. Bear with me, I’ll explain.
The Braxton sisters were various levels of irritated and pissed off that everywhere Tamar went her husband Vince went as well. A fact that we, viewers weren’t really aware of because most of the time Vince stayed out of view of the camera. Anyway, they confronted Tamar. Her response? “I actually like my husband.”
How wonderful it must be to spend every day with a person that you love AND like! To share all of life’s big and little moments with that person. To be completely accepted and adored by them. Who wouldn’t want that?
I’m inclined to disbelieve that marriage is the answer to anything. It doesn’t drive people insane. It doesn’t turn frogs into princes. It doesn’t guarantee a predictable or happy life. It won’t make your children respectable members of society. Marriage like any other choice can have good or bad outcomes. And that depends entirely on the situation and the people involved.