Oh no. Another woman just went and married herself.
Haven’t we gone over this? Oh wait, we have. I blogged about it and even went on Anderson Cooper a few years back to tell the “bride” she was full of it.
I get it: You want to empower yourself and commit to your wellbeing, to evolve as a woman, as a human. I am 1000% cheering you on.
But. Using marriage to proclaim your independence and self-empowerment is so insane and contradictory that the veins in my neck are bulging as we speak.
Now. Before you get your veil in a bunch, let me be clear: I don’t think all women who are married are slaves or less worthy or less feminist or any of those things. Your marriage is what you make it, and so on (insert open-minded discussion here).
But facts are facts: Marriage as an institution wasn’t ever intended to “free” or “empower” women—quite the opposite. At its best, it gave women an attempt to improve their lifestyle and social standing, which was possible because of their association with men, not because the world saw them as superheroes.
And so in attempting to use marriage to make this point is inane, backwards and, well, kind of silly. The blushing bride, Grace Gelder, told Cosmo that she “looks at the ceremony as a testament to her self-discovery.”
That’s like deciding to celebrate Easter as a tribute to a woman’s right to dye her hair. Sure, you can do that, but…that’s not what it’s about. Unless it’s “make up your own meaning for things” day. (Is it? Someone check the calendar.)
Oh, and by the way, when you decide to full-on “get married to yourself” in a white dress and tongue kiss yourself in a mirror (which I did at a sleepover once in 6th grade, but for other reasons), you say to the world that “Hey, I’m married now!” and all other suitors move on to the next gal.
And yet in this case, as Cosmo reports, Gelder’s ceremony “was never intended to be a legally binding marriage (and Gelder is certainly open to actual marriage if the right person comes along).”
Ah! Isn’t that convenient. So, it’s just married for now, til I get a chance to get married for real. Aha.
My head is one second away from exploding.
Far too many people (though fewer and fewer thank God) put up a big stink about same-sex marriage (a whole other ridiculous and maddening discussion). When really, it’s people like this who undermine marriage—using it as a glorified birthday party (just, on another day that’s not your birthday), and something to do while you wait to get “real” married. If you’re all pro-traditional marriage, this is the type of person you should be furious with, not some lovely gay couple from Cleveland who have been in love for 10 years and want to make a legit go at it and live their lives in peace.
Best part? Gelder says, “Some female acquaintances have told me that I’m an example to women, but I say: ‘Why not an example to men too?’ I really don’t see it as any kind of feminist statement, but creating a wedding of this kind on my own terms felt incredibly empowering.’ ”
Yes, Gracie dear, you’re right about one thing: It’s not a feminist statement. It’s the opposite. It’s saying that living life as a fully-realized, empowered woman with goals of her own wasn’t enough, that in fact the only way you could think to define your independence and self-love was to mimic the ceremony for an institution that for most of recorded history defined a woman in terms of the man who chose her. Gotcha.
The only thing I can even think of is that you were simply dying for the china. Then again, an empowered woman like yourself should be able to just march in and buy some.