Post # 31
Married men live longer and are typically happier than unmarried men, women don’t gain as much as men do in these areas. Men seem to get so used to being married, and enjoying it, that if their spouse dies they will marry again within 12 months or their mortality rates go up.
Post # 32
bctoquebec : “But for me, it’s the largest committment one can make, it is a validation.”
- Wedding: June 2019 - Tacoma, WA
All legal reasons aside, this is/was the big one for me. Marriage validates a relationship in a way other types of relationships (dating, boyfriend/girlfriend, even living together) don’t enjoy.
Whether people like to admit it or not, saying “this is my girlfriend” does not hold anywhere near the same weight as “this is my wife,” and it doesn’t really matter how long you’ve been together. (In fact, I’d say people who are together for a very long time and not married illicit more questions about the seriousness of the commitment in general).
In just four words, “this is my wife,” people immediately understand the level of commitment and seriousness of the relationship. No explanation necessary. Not so with “this is my girlfriend.” That could mean a lot of different things to different people and gives no real indication of the seriousness of the relationship beyond maybe “we’re together and not dating anyone else.”
I actually had this conversation with my fiance before we were engaged, explaining why marriage is so important to me. For me, it’s walking the walk instead of just talking the talk. You can tell people you’re serious and “basically married” until you’re blue in the face, but without the validation of actual marraige, that relationship looks less serious to many people, if not most in our society, than it would if the couple were married.
That validation of our relationship is very important to me if I’m going to commit my life to someone and do all the things a wife would do. I can’t see myself doing that long-term without that commitment/validation from the other person. You want me to act like your wife and do all the wife-type things? Then make me your wife. No way am I going to act like one indefinitely while someone enjoys the benefits without the commitment of marraige and the validation that brings to our relationship.
Post # 33
- Wedding: April 2017 - City, State
I got married for the legal protections, the financial incentives, and because I won’t have children outside of marriage and we decided we wanted to have a family. But those are solely my reasons and I recognize that marriage holds different meaning for different people.
I don’t tie marriage to commitment because there are no shortage of married cheaters and terrible spouses, and there are equally as many unmarried loving, fully committed couples.
Post # 34
or the guys who say “I’m scared of the commitment” as they live happily in a household with their 4 kids and fiance of 10yrs 🙄 like you understand the ultimate commitment is a CHILD right? But you’re afraid of the legal commitment 🤔
Post # 36
The main things that made me want marriage are the commitment and legal aspects, particularly that unless you’re married you’re not your partner’s next of kin, meaning you do not have an legal rights in the event of them falling ill or dying. In the UK there is no such thing as common law. I have heard stories of unmarried couples with children where one partner has died and the other wasn’t entitled to any widows allowance for the children or their partner’s pension etc.
Post # 39
Personally, I was never a person that wanted marriage but with my other half, it felt like being married would solidify our relationship of us against the world, if that makes sense? It really is one of the biggest proclamations of love.
Also, benefits are medical, taxes, future kids, real estate etc.
Post # 40
The importance to us is the legal side of it (we are in the UK). And I come from a big Jewish family that likes parties haha
Post # 41
One thing I haven’t seen mentioned is the social status. When someone mentions their boyfriend, I have no idea if it’s someone they’ve been dating a week or 10 years. When someone mentions their husband, I assume this is someone they’ve been with a long time and have made a commitment to be with forever.
Now of course, people can and do get married after only knowing each other a few months so it’s not like being married means you necessarily have a stronger relationship than an unmarried couple, but there is a social status attached to it whether we like it or not.
Post # 42
For me, I view marriage as a deeper commitment then dating somebody and it was important that my husband and I make that commitment to each other.
Post # 42
Just to clarify we are going to get married! He bought a ring for me (without me knowing) and has a proposal date and plan in place for before April. We were just having a discussion about it and he is scared of “marriage” he said he’s not scared to commit to me or marry me but the thought that marriage might change our relationship scares him. We already live together and spend 24/7 with each other, we have combined finances, 3 pets, and are commited to each other 100%. His fears come from growing up with very disfunctional parents, both hated each other, cheated on each other, and eventually got divorced. This is why he doesn’t believe marriage necessarily adds any extra commitment.
Commitment was what I mentioned I liked about the idea of marriage but he said commitment doesn’t have to do with marriage it has to do with what we chose. My level of commitment is not changing if I’m married to you or not. Which is true, I could get married and cheat still, it’s about the relationship not about marriage.
He still wants to get married because he knows societally it’s important, it’s important to me and my family, but because his primary example of married life was terrible it scares him a little bit.
Thanks everyone for your comments, we’ll go through them together tonight 🙂
Post # 42
Even if you’re not religious, there can be important symbolic meaning behind getting married. It’s a formal, public commitment to one another. It says to the world and to each other that you’re in it for the long haul and you’re willing to invest in that legally, financially, socially and symbolically.
But symbolic meaning is subjective as well as cultural so it can mean different things to different people. People that have grown up with a negative experience of marriage don’t always attach the same meaning to it, so it makes sense your bf may not feel the same way about it. To him in symbolically represents something painful from his past.
I’d just talk to him about it regularly. Remind him that your marriage is not his parents marriage. It’s what you two choose to make of it. (And honestly it’s not likely to change much at all in your day to day relationship if your lives are already totally entwined)
Post # 43
thank you for posting this! I am loving seeing everyone’s answers because I was in the same boat as your Significant other. I have always seen marriage as just something you’re supposed todo.. and it’s expected. No real rhyme or reason. It just is …and it’s always kind of annoyed me that it’s the only way people will take your relationship seriously. To me it seems like it’s become more of a societal rule more than anything. When I say “my boyfriend and I are looking for a place” it doesn’t get the same response and reaction as when I’ve said “my fiancé and I are looking for a place.” I know this because I’ve tried it to test out this exact societal response
I do want to get married and I find it beautiful to have a ceremony that revolves around the love you have for eachother and a promise you’re making for the rest of your life. For this reason, I want a religious ceremony because to me, a simple legal ceremony doesn’t portray the love and commitment I want to be expressed that day. I want something more spiritual backing my marriage versus just the government lol. And for both of us, we agree that our commitment to eachother isn’t any less right now than what it will be after we are married. We love that we can have this full ceremony revolved around our love and celebrate it with our families.
Post # 44
and this is where it can get very annoying to me… I’ve been with my boyfriend for 4 years (as of this weekend woo!!) and still as soon as I say boyfriend, we aren’t taken seriously.
Theres this couple on my Facebook that got engaged over Christmas and then 2 weeks later posted they are celebrating their 6 month anniversary. But no one out in the world is going to know they only knew eachother for maybe 9 months at the time of the ceremony and they will be taken much more seriously than my boyfriend and I. I’m sure they love eachother and there’s nothing wrong with getting married that soon after meeting (when ya know ya know!) but why doesn’t my relationship not get taken seriously JUST because we aren’t married yet. Societal rules..I’m tellin ya! Lol
Post # 45
the legal aspect was important but I also wanted children. Children are a much bigger commitment than marriage so if you’re not willing to marry me I’m not willing to make your babies.
And while it’s possible to set up some of the legal aspects separately certain things (primarily survivor benefits such as social security or government pensions) are not afforded to non-spouses. If my husband dies before me I still get his pension, but if I were just a girlfriend I wouldn’t.