Monday, 8 March 2010

It is all my fault

This marriage malarkey is all my fault. When O and I had been going out for a little while the concept of marriage raised it’s head. At the time O told me he didn’t understand the point of marriage and didn't want to get married. Meh! we hadn’t really been together that long so I didn’t really think about it too much. I didn’t know my own thoughts about marriage so why make an issue out of a non-issue.

As the years ticked by the inevitable jokes started about how long we’d been together and when the marriage bells were going to chime. O was still in the “not a chance” camp and I was starting to be in the “really? not a chance? that’s kind of a shame I think I’d kind of like to get married, but its not a big deal” camp. O was very reassuring that he wanted to be with me forever he just didn’t need a bit of paper to confirm that. He listened to my concerns and conceded that if I wanted to get married (to the point of I reeeaaaallllly wanted to get married) then we could consider it more. It never felt like too much of an issue as I knew I wanted to be with him and I couldn’t put my finger on why I wanted a certificate to confirm that. I wasn’t going to end the relationship because it, I’d got this far with my eyes open and really, I love this boy why end a relationship because of that.

In the middle of all of this it started……………….

All of our friends started getting engaged – it started with my female friends (I’m sure there is something funny in there about pushy females). There was a point when all of my female friends (to be fair I don’t actually have that many friends) were engaged except one who had just got divorced and me! At that point I reeeeaaaaalllllyyy didn’t want to be engaged, I didn’t want to feel like we were jumping on the bandwagon, just because everyone else we knew was getting married didn’t mean we needed to. Lots of engagement announcements are inevitably followed by a lots of weddings – 6 in the one year and I was bridesmaid at 2. They sort of sickened me to the whole experience, plus seeing friends turn from normal sane individuals to raving lunatics on beta-blockers was not an appealing option. (seriously I kid you not)

O and I kept talking about marriage, what it might mean and why we might do it. I had by this time come to the conclusion that I reeeaaaaalllly wanted to get married, and for some reason I wanted to get married before we had children*.

To fit in with our 5 year plan** we had to get married fairly soon so I kind of knew the proposal was coming soon (still it was a lovely amazing surprise).

So you see it is all my fault, although O now insists that he very much wants to get married and believe me there have been many times when I have begged to call the whole thing off. If I’d just listened to O in the first place we wouldn’t be having this wedding and our relationship would be carrying on as always.

*I really can not explain this, it is just a deep rooted belief, I think deeply rooted in my own insecurity.
**are we the only ones that have one of these? Does anyone else’s seem to continue to be 5 year plans even though time passes – the 5 years never comes to an end or get any shorter


  1. You and I have a very similar experience! And yes, we have a 5 year plan (that changes often)...

  2. Ok, so now I want a five year plan (very Stalin!). I agree with you about the wedding before children. I do agree about the idea of insecurity without vows.

  3. Perhaps you and Anna ought to truly examine your beliefs and judgements before passing them onto others? I do believe that vows have meaning and importance, to us and for William, otherwise I wouldn't be getting married, but is my 2 year old worried that we are unmarried? No. He is given plenty of love and attention, and proper behavioural boundaries for his age, and he's a very secure child, thanks. Those are the really and truly important things. Likewise his 6 year old cousin of engaged parents is an extremely happy, secure and well-behaved child. And Hugh, our mate Vicki's nephew (they had an anti-wedding). And Meg, 2, a friend. Conversely I also know children of married people with real troubles with emotional security.

    Look at it another way, do you honestly believe that vows are a panacea for happiness and security? That married people will not ever row, be abusive to one another or their kids, or split up?

    Is it a fear that a child of unmarried parents will be different, bullied at school? Probably 20 years ago, when you and I were at school, but today more children are born out of wedlock than within. And I refuse to believe that marriage per se will make anyone a better parent.

    Your personal feeling about how you wish to organise your life is absolutely your decision, but when it comes to the suggestion that children of unmarried parents will be insecure, that it it "right" to be married before children, and therefore "wrong" not to, I really do take offence, sorry guys.

  4. Dear Catherine,

    But the whole point of my statement was that I feel insecure. I am scared I am not good enough for my fiance to stay with me whether or not I have children. I just do not believe I am good enough for him.

    I do not think my soon to be sister is a poor mother because she had her wonderful son out of wedlock. She is a wonderful mother and her boys will be great men.

    It has nothing to do with the child. All about me.

    I did not mean any offence.


  5. Hey Anna,

    I can see that I read you - and probably spare thoughts - the wrong way, I apologise :D I suppose it's my own insecurities about being judged as an unmarried mother... figure that tangled web out!

    Well off to wipe the egg off my face I guess. Have just taken a look at your blog & it's lovely btw, I'm sure Bean feels very lucky to have such a talented wife-to-be.


  6. Catherine,

    Oh shit I knew that this would happen one day. I'd write something and not think it through properly and someone would read it from their perspective which of course is different from mine and take offence. That was not my intention.
    That asterix did have a much longer explanation about how I feel that people should make their own decisions about when they have children and whether or not they marry. I can only be in my own relationship and can only make the decisions that are right for us and me (my insecurities are mine alone. O thinks I'm a weirdo for STILL feeling insecure). But as is clear I couldn't put it into words all that well so I took it out.
    As you rightly point out the marital status of parents does not a happy/unhappy child make. I look at pictures of your little family and it gives me a warm glow inside and I hope that one day I can have that too. That glow doesn't come from the ring on your finger or a certificate you may or may not have in a draw. It comes from the cheeky smile on your son's face and the love in his parent's eyes.
    But now I'm rambling, I've just seen your other comment whilst I've been frantically searching for the correct words. Can we call a truce? I have absolutely no judgement on you as an unwed mother - you are a hero - I think all mothers are heros! x

  7. Truce!

    Bar the first sentence which was I can see now was totally unfair, I do largely stand by my comment. BUT I can see what you actually *meant* now, and I took you and Anna the wrong way, sorry dude. I actually think wedding stress is putting me a little on edge at the moment and prone to doing this - last night Richard asked me to do something before I got caught up with my "imaginary friends" online (he meant it lightly) as I was trying to find out some stuff for the invitations and I flipped. my. lid. (in a stomping off to bed sort of way). Poor man. Then I declared that no-one liked me, which is mental and deeply unattractive, and took several hours to calm down. Like, eh?

    Anyway everything is fine, I'm sorry I've upset, oh, three people in the last few days, but glad it's all clear if that makes sense. *I* feel better anyway...

  8. I just want to say that I love your spare thoughts..

    because most of the time they're mine..

  9. I'm too impatient for a 5 year plan, so we have a saving for the wedding/house/babies plan. It's fluid, so I can't have a tantrum when nothing happens as quickly as I would like.

    I don't know exactly why I want to get married, I think it's also for the security.

  10. my friend had a 5 year plan,or at least a plan, and it worked out for her. but entirely accidentally! I thinkthe best things in life happen when you arent expecting them, so waiting for them to happen is just wasting time. that doesnt mean I dont, but its what I say to convince myself that better things are around the corner when I'm having a bad day.
    I.m glad you three called a truce, I was quite scared for a while there!

  11. I def used to have a 5 year plan, all my friends used to laugh about me and my plan - altho most of it went out of the window when I decided to embark on my career choice which meant more than 8 years of studying!

    They always say things happen for a reason so I always think things happen at the right time for everyone. I guess my 5 year plan is still around but just stretched a few years!

    I also wanted to be married before we have kids but I would not have been worried if we werent, as my lovely sis and best friend have shown.

    Now the no job thing may change things again etc but who knows.

    p.s thanks for your kind thoughts too, im doing ok, shame you cant get paid to be a lady of leisure! Lots of wedding stuff going on and meeting my sis, nephew, friend and her baby for lunch on thurs! I could def get used to it - not feeling too guilty yet since im still getting paid till the end of the month!

  12. Interesting... I'm actually not that sure why the OH asked me to marry him. He says he always knew he wanted to, then when we went away to Norway on a holiday, he decided that he was going to do it (though it was months after that...)

    He just smiles whenever I try and ask for more info. He thinks 'because' is an adequate answer ;)

    I guess my amazement at it a little is that I'd always been the 'boy one' out of the two of us, going we don't need to get married etc, so perhaps he must have picked up on when I stopped saying that!

    Also no 5 year plan here... though I'm pretty sure the OH has theories on when he'd like to have kids by!!


Your Spare Thoughts