Post # 1
A little history: We have been dating for over 3 years, 2 of those years have been spent 2,000 miles apart. My FH is in the USAF and lives in Montana while I chose to stay in Alabama to finish school.
I graduate in Aug. 2013, we have already booked a venue, bought a dress, etc for our March 2013 wedding (during my spring break). We decided we’d rather spend 4 months married but apart rather than wait another year to have a spring wedding. Well now we’re leaning more towards going to the courthouse this summer just so we can finally be married. We will still have the wedding in March for our family and friends. We’ve only told a few people (my sister and one of my bridesmaids, and a set of married friends in Montana who will witness for us) and we have no plans of telling our parents. Ever. We’re not telling my parents because we are afraid they will make me get a loan for my car (which is in their name) and pay for what little they still cover for me. We cannot afford this. :/
Our reasons for the decision of a courthouse wedding are not just that we want to be married (and if there weren’t thousands of miles separating us, we would’ve already had an actual wedding anyway) but I’m also a broke college student as cliche as that is. I’ve also recently found out I have some health issues that need to be taken care of. I’m on my dad’s health insurance which is great in that I do not have a bill to pay for insurance, but his insurance seriously sucks. They won’t pay for the tests I need to have done because I’m “too young” to have these issues (as a nursing student I know this is bull). Tricare will pay if we’re married. I’ll also qualify for more financial aid which would mean fewer private loans.
While all of these are valid reasons, I keep having serious second thoughts about doing this. For one I don’t want 2 different wedding anniversaries. I also don’t want my parents to flip out when they do find out (because eventually they will). And what if we get to March and I head down the aisle in the dress (which I love) and it all just feels cheap? I’m terrified we’re going to ruin the magic.
I don’t know what to do. B has pretty much left it up to me by saying “I want to be married, I don’t care if we do it now or we wait”.
Post # 3
The problem with this is that you are going to have to tell your parents in a way because you can’t be on their insurance anymore and they won’t be able to claim you as a dependant on their taxes.
I’m sorry you are going through health problems and hope you figure out what is best! Are you sure that Tricare will cover it? I’ve heard that some people have trouble seeing doctors with Tricare, especially dependants or spouses.
Post # 4
I don’t know what the insurance would do in this situation, but perhaps you could get a civil union? Maybe that way you could get on his insurance? Also, telling that to your parents would be more “here’s this logical thing we’re doing for financial reasons” than “we got married in secret 10 years ago hahahah!”
Post # 5
I think that getting married is a very grown-up, adult thing. If you want to hide it from your parents because they are still supporting you to some extent, then you might not be ready to be married. I’m not saying that you cannot accept support from your parents once you’re married; if they choose to help you make your way in life, that’s fantastic and very generous of them. What I am saying, though, is that hiding a marriage from your parents specifically to keep that support coming is not a very adult or grown-up thing to do.
Post # 6
You have to tell your parents, because they WILL find out eventually.
And as a PP mentioned, if you get married, don’t tell them, and they claim you as a dependent on their taxes, they will end up getting audited.
Starting off your lives together by being dishonest to both of your parents is inevitable drama.
Tell them whats going on and that this is the decision you’ve made.
Post # 7
If you don’t feel you can tell your parents – don’t do it. It’s as simple as that. The fall out of a secret marriage would be worse than them just not being understanding from the get-go. That being said, we did a courthouse thing in February and will have the big wedding in September. It doesn’t feel like it cheapened anything at all. If anything, I can tolerate the stress of the big wedding better because we had our own private moment. And surprisingly my parents were very supportive. They are ultra-conservative, religious, and intolerant of things that are “different” and they were shockingly supportive after we basically told them this is why we’re doing it, it was going to happen anyways, we’re adults and there is nothing you can say about it.
But the key is if you can tell them. If you can’t, don’t do it. You’re adults making adult decisions. If you can’t stand by those choices…well, maybe you should wait.
Post # 8
I wouldn’t do this. Either get married at the courthouse and tell everyone then later have a wedding celebration, not another wedding and reception. If I were a guest at what I thought was your wedding and found out that you were already married, I would be really pissed. I would imagine that it would be 100 times worse if you didn’t tell your family who I am assuming is helping to pay for what they think is your actual wedding.
Post # 9
Don’t start out your marriage with a lie….
Post # 10
You have so many legitimate reservations about getting married. Listen to your voice of reason.
My advice is don’t do it if you’re going to lie about it. As adults we make our own decisions and accept the consequences. If you forsee consequences of getting married as your parents pulling financial support and you deoend on that money the solution is to wait to get married, not get married and lie about it.
It will feel much better once you can be open with everyone about your decisions (courthouse or original date) and you won’t risk your family losing respect for you. There’s nothing wrong with a courthouse first for insurance reasons, just be open about it so no one feels decieved at your vow renewal in March.
Post # 11
@fishbone: This. If you want to do it, do it, but be honest about it and don’t expect or ask others to keep lies for you. Given your dependence on them, they will have to be told or they can run into trouble, especially with IRS or their insurer (it can void their insurance in some cases if there is misrepresentations)! And if they ARE paying for your big wedding, I think it is really selfish to not let them know and let them decide if they want to still pay for the big wedding.
Also, depending on the laws where you are and where you are married, there may be things that legally cannot be said or done at the second ceremony as you are already married and it would have to be a vow renewal. Here, I notice when the required declarations are not made (especially as I have been through the “these are legally required” parts, and the marriage certificate is not signed!
Post # 12
usually i am in support of sealing the deal for logistical reasons. trust me i’ve been there and insurance was a main factor in pushing up my nuptials too. *but* as long as you still have all these financial ties to your parents you really can’t do it without telling them.
Post # 13
I think you have more good reasons for getting married now at the courthouse, than you do for waiting.
I think based on everything you’ve said, you should get married now — no, it will not ruin your big day later on — and you should tell your parents. If they try to make you get that loan for the car, then let the chips fall. Beg, plead with them if you have to — I hope they won’t be hard-nosed about it.
Post # 14
@RayKay: Right. OP – no matter what state, the officiant would need to know you were already married. Putting the officiant in the position of having to hide something or lie to your parents is NOT cool.
Post # 15
My best friend married her husband in September 2010, about 4 months after they got engaged. Her husband is a Captain in the Army and was being deployed to Afghanistan. He’s also a pilot – which posed more risk for him due to the terrain.
If they married he would make an extra $30k a year for spousal support and she would have the privelages of being “in the loop” if he were injured, and if severely injured, she would be flown to him at no cost to her.
She briefly brought up the subject to her parents about how many military couples marry without telling anyone and her parents agreed it was a smart thing to do…she never told them she would be doing it, but rather wanted to make sure they weren’t dead-set against the idea.
They married. She has never told them, or anyone else other than myself and one other friend and they are “really” getting married this Summer.
They made sure to do their OWN taxes for this very reason.
I don’t think it’s starting your marriage off on the wrong foot or anything like that, she doesn’t feel that her wedding this summer is “cheap” because they haven’t officially considered themselves married these past couple years and they will celebrate their wedding anniversary on the day that they married (in a church!) in front of all of their freinds and family, not the date on paper (although they will have to use that date for legal documents, etc.)
I say go for it, it’s a really common thing to do in the military.