Friday, June 3, 2011

I May Crochet This On a Pillow...

I recently attended the wedding of a good friend in small town Louisiana.  It was a very traditional, very Southern affair - except her wedding reading.  She used a quote from the movie Frida, which shocked the older crowd (most people thought the reader was drunk), but that I found absolutely perfect.

"I don’t believe in marriage. No, I really don’t. Let me be clear about that.

I think at worst it’s a hostile political act, a way for small-minded men to keep women in the house and out of the way, wrapped up in the guise of tradition and conservative religious nonsense.

At best, it’s a happy delusion. These two people, who truly love each other and have no idea how truly miserable they are about to make each other.

But, when two people know that, and they decide with eyes wide open to face each other and get married anyway, then I don’t think it’s conservative or delusional. I think it’s radical and courageous…and very romantic."

This sums up my feelings on marriage better than any traditional wedding reading (First Corinthians, anyone?).  I don't particularly believe in marriage.  In my opinion, too many people get married for the wrong reasons. Personally, I got married the first time because that was the next step - we'd dated all through college, and getting married was just what you did.  Breaking up would have been messy and difficult, and inertia is a powerful force.  I swore I would never get married again.  When you think about it, marriage really doesn't make a lot of sense anymore.  You can live together, open joint accounts, have kids, all without a formal paper. It's old-fashioned and frankly impractical in our society today.

But then I fell in love. And got married. I don't believe in marriage in general, but I do believe in my  marriage.  It's illogical and I can't explain this lapse in rationality on my part, other than to say that it feels vaguely radical to jump in with both feet. To throw away my cynicism. To be optimistic, even in the face of odds.  And to believe in my husband.


  1. I can't tell you how much I love this post! I haven't seen the movie and hadn't heard this quote before, but really like that your friend used it as a wedding reading! I also think that you can toss aside the traditional institution & definitions of marriage as a couple. But more importantly, we need to reconceptualize the institution in society as a whole.

  2. Inertia is a great word to describe so many marriages (mine included, sans present). Unless its a partnership, blessed officially or not, its a disaster. I recognize that I failed in the full partnership side of the process in the past but am working on it now. Being on the other side of marriage, house-husband, it remarkable how much it has opened my mind to my weaknesses in the past. Its the little things that become the big things. Is the institution of marriage a disaster, most likely. But sometimes the disaster is what makes life interesting and fun. At least I stepped foot on the Titanic instead of sitting on the shore.