Are you chasing the Wedding or the Marriage?

Ring? Check. Dress? Check. Wedding details, invites and registry? Check. Long-term goals for how you will coexist with one person until death do you part? Ehhhhh. This begs the question of, ‘Are we only chasing the wedding and not the marriage?’. After a few thumb-scrolls down Facebook, I encountered a minimum of 3 relationship status changes, 7 wedding pictures and 4 proposals on average. However, I never see the posts to explain the challenges or hard work of marriage.

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For most women, by the time we’re 7 years old, we already know that we want to be married. Well, maybe not something we “know”, but maybe something we’ve been indoctrinated into. As little girls, we are given the responsibilities or “duties” of a housewife through colorful, pretty toys and television. Anywhere from the baby doll that defecates to the kitchen set equipped with pots, pans and food. From the wedding edition Barbie and Ken to an Easy Bake Oven. Already we are being coerced to be domesticated and catering. Although these are essential tools we need to assist to run a home, it has also altered our attention as young women. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED my Easy Bake Oven, Baby Alive doll and kitchen set with the plastic food and pots. However, as young girls become young women, we replace the baby doll with children and Ken with boyfriends but no full idea of what a relationship truly is or needs. A large majority of cartoons or children movies centered around women either being docile, weak, a victim or a damsel in distress needing to be saved by a man affectionately called “Prince Charming”. In turn, we spend the rest of our lives searching for our Prince Charming. Even forcing an unfit candidate to be your Prince in shining armor at times, just to have someone to belong to. Just to have a Ken.

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“I said Yes!” *Proceeds to posts hand and ring and awaits the flood of likes and congrats comments*. Is this the end goal? Are we more interested in showing that we “got chose” than investing in our future with our partner? Marriage has become so diluted and shallow that its more for show than it is a life long journey with someone. I know a few amazing married couples who are never short of words on how difficult the consummation of marriage can be. They also never miss an opportunity to express the joy and love for each other. It’s the balance. But if social media ONLY displays the beauty of the wedding day or the gossip of adultery, deceit and bickering, many young women are virtually deprived of that balance and harmony. And this is particularly disheartening considering that we are more prone to scroll a timeline than to make a list for yourself and partner of what you both will need to have a harmonious relationship or marriage.

I don’t believe we can be fully prepared for “forever” with someone. Things change and so do people. We grow and learn ourselves and partners as time dissipates. But we should never be satisfied with only getting the ring and the wedding without equally preparing for adversity and challenges of marriage. One day I will say “I do” to a man I couldn’t fathom myself living without. And after those two words, I will spend the rest of my time learning how to give and take, compromise and listen so that when you scroll Facebook, I won’t be there. I’ll be too busy chasing my marriage.

Tonya D.

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