Image by Daquella Manera

I usually don’t put much about events from my life on my blog. As the title of the book on blogging says, ‘No one cares what you had for breakfast’! So I keep personal events mostly off the blog and try to focus on delivering what is important for my readers’ health.

However, blogs are a personal medium and even someone as content-focussed as me likes to have a sense of who the blogger is. So here is a little of my personal reflections on my wedding yesterday.

1. We had a great time. It is my second marriage and my partner’s first. It was very casual and small. Immediate family and a few friends. This meant we could talk to everyone, photos didn’t take too long (no straining of the smiliing muscles) and not a major organisational operation. We are both of the non-romantic persuasion so it really was very much our way of doing things.

2. It is surprising how many there are expectations still about marriage. The divorce rate (and it has been quite high for decades now) does not seem to have dented the desire of people to get married.

3. Most people are quite conventional in their expectations of marriage. My immediate friends tend to be quite strong individualists. I was a bit shocked at how strongly people feel about what I think of as small departures from the usual – my partner wearing pants not a dress for instance.

We had also forgotten about flowers. (My partner has fairly strong environmental views and would rather see flowers growing than cut.) The celebrant’s reaction to this was little short of shocked. [My partner said that she prefers trees – and prevented a heart attack by assuring the Celebrant that I was only joking when I said that maybe she could carry a pot plant.)

4. The focus on one day and one ritual on that day is extraordinary. People will travel great distances to be at an event where they don’t get much time with the people they are there to be with. And may spend almost no time with these people for years on end. The excessive focus on the day is matched by neglect for the rest of the time.

5. Perhaps weddings exist for the sake of photographers. Much of the ceremony is set up with the needs of cameras in mind.

6. I’ve realised that I don’t take seriously the idea that God cares about documentation. I hadn’t realised this until I was reflecting on my reactions to our wedding. I was never much of a believer in ritual or officialdom; over the years I’ve gradually arrived, without my realising it, at my current position: God/spirit isn’t bothered by paper credentials – God/spirit is concerned with values and how people treat each other.

7. In the current legal climate in Australia: if you are the parent who stays home with the kids while your partner goes out to earn the money, you would be crazy not to be married. The legal situation of a defacto partner is far more precarious than a married one. I don’t know the situation in other countries.

8. Marriage seems to mean that people are treated differently and taken more seriously. It confers a status.

9. We need some way of recognising the seriousness of the commitment we have to other kinds of relationships. “Prendship” is one possibility.

10. We still long for companionship, acceptance and love. We still hope for a relationship that will be life long and enriching. And most of us put in a fair deal of work to make this a reality. While some of the reality of marriage may be problematic, some of the motives speak to our highest ideals.

What do you make of the current state of marriage? And what has been your experience of marriage? Do you think we need to recognise the seriousness of other kinds of relationships. I’d love to hear what you think and feel about this in the comments.

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19 Comments to “Wedding Reflections”

  1. Daphne says:

    Hi Evan,

    Congratulations to you and your partner! For all the modern day cynicism people may have about marriage, it is still a beautiful thing when two people decide to go for it, as you have done. And I did enjoy this personal post.

    I’m not married, and the thought of remaining committed to one person for the rest of my life scares me. I would feel better if a marriage contract was for a five-year term, subject to renewal if both parties agree. Divorce would then be unnecessary and far less painful if it did happen. This is my own contrarian view to the current system, I guess.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on marriage. It helps me prepare myself for the day I take that step!

  2. Evan says:

    Thanks Daphne. I really like the idea of the time limited contract. Thanks for your comment.

  3. Ching Ya says:

    Again, Evan, congrats! Doesn’t matter how big or small it is, as long you have all the blessings, wishes and love you need to get through the day. =) I’m sure the ceremony was just as sweet.

    I’ve been married for 2 years now, to me, it’s a reality show! ha.. a pastor warned me that before I walked down the aisle, I guess a little too late to run huh? *jokingly*

    I learnt a lot from my marriage. It’s an experience of my adulthood, and greater responsibility. Mutual trust, understanding & selflessness are essential; It’s a huge lesson for we’re living for 2 now instead of 1. I’m thankful that God blessed me with a good listener. It’s important for man, at times, to stop arguing, instead listening to the wife’s true feeling. Sometimes, that’s all she needs.

    I could go on, and on, but I better stop babbling now. Sorry, Evan. =) But I’m sincerely happy for you!

  4. Evan says:

    Thanks Ching Ya. It’s wonderful that you are married to a good listener, this makes a huge difference in my experience. Wishing you blessings in your marriage too.

  5. I’ve been married for a gazillion years now and love it. I’ll take mature love over young love any day.

    Thanks for sharing part of your life. I prefer posts like this one.

  6. Evan says:

    Thanks Jean. I too prefer mature love.

    Could you say more about preferring posts like this one? I’d be interested to hear.

  7. Diane says:

    Hi Evan,

    Congatulations Again!

    Your post made me think about how many people say its just a piece of paper and I don’t think it is. It represents a life time committment at least it was suppose to be that when it was created and along with that many responsibilities and laws protecting the persons who engage in it. So to me just piece of paper is more of a reflection of a flippant and careless assumption or lack of a real desire to be that which a lifetime committment represents. I think if you live out authenticity and that is your desire to marry you inherit duties and responsibility and this piece of paper is the weight and measure of your authentic action of love and devotion to this significant other. I think God cares deeply about you and your choices to engage in this life time act. I think people often put more weight in the anti-conformit and the that is actually more in allignment to carrying out true authentic dedicated commitmment to their family be it two or more.

    Some birds live their life with one mate. They do not have a piece of paper between them. But birds don’t have money to deal with a world of finacial and social frameworks to engage in and in the action of marriage is supposed to be a myriad of small things done to honor this commitment. It protects both people and also says many other things depending on your own belifef system.

    I think the marriage in the world today represents the confusion and displays also the cheaters, the abusers, and just plain un-committed folks, imcompatability too.

    Any person can write a will or a living trust if they want to make more serious a relationship if they are not into the committment to marriage. Why should anything be needed except people being more responsible to their own life.

  8. Evan says:

    Hi Diane,

    Yes it was supposed to. But it doesn’t seem to. When I see the way people treat each other just a year after their wedding (or the day after come to that) they don’t seem to have any desire or commitment. Their attitude seems both careless of what they say and uncaring about their partner. This inauthenticity is taken as quite normal (and probably is). I think God cares about values and behaviour (as I said in the post). Our commitment to each other is real – as has been shown by us working through very deep difficulties together. We take making a lifetime commitment very seriously, and we had done this before the ceremony.

    I do think marriage involves financial, social and legal consequences. It says much about our belief system. One part of my belief system is that friendship is valuable and should be honoured also. Many friendships outlast many a marriage. My partner was abused by her family, her friends are far more important to her than her (birth) family but this is not recognised legally. I see this as a problem.

    As you say: I don’t think anything more should be needed than people’s responsibility to each other.

    Thanks for your comment. I hope you feel from my response that I have listened to you. I am happy to keep talking about this with you. It seems that it is important to both of us.

  9. Diane says:

    Hii Evan,

    I just read everyone elses comments.

    Funny just a five year contract system. Then you are not up to marriage. Like I said you could take personal responsibility and make a contract which represents five years but that isn’t a marriage not its essential essence. That’s a trial arrangement. Great idea for some people I am sure.

    It’s not mature love to me that five year trial committment.
    Different strokes for different folks.

    Some people just are not “real marriage” material I think.
    And that is OK…they don’t have to be.It may not be in their nature.

  10. Evan says:

    I guess it is about if the lifelong commitment is essential to marriage. I too think that some people are not really marriage material. Thanks for your comment.

  11. Diane says:

    Hi Evan,

    Many people do have friendships that out last their marriages but usually this friend isn’t living with you day and night. Its just such a different dynamic. But truly a blessing to have life long friends often times they are more like your intimate family in some ways then a dysfunctional family can be if that is your circumstance and even if you don’t have that. I am sorry to hear your wife was abused in her life. She’s so blessed to have a caring and kind man to support her through life.

    You are very understanding Evan know that I do feel that when you respond to any comment. Thanks for being you!

    I think sensitive people often see others un-kind nesses because we can feel what it’s like or might be like so when we see this its upsetting to us.

    One of my best friends daughter got married about 4 years ago. I’ll never forget this he smashed the cake in her face a real practical joker.Ya reckon? I remember her crying the whole beautiful evening was now a wreck. She finally composed herself and went on with the evening. Ya know when you just feel its not going to work out from the get go. well that’s what I felt that night. In their third year they divorced. It wasn’t the cake or was it? He really did not care how it would make her feel he was careless and never considered her feelings. .

    I so agree with you that friendships are to be honored.
    I so understand that there are laws that often do not work for each individuals circumstances.

    My sister-in-law was taken out of her home even though she was married by her family that abused her too. I won’t go into the particulars but it was so against the law and it still happened. It took a couple of months to get it cleared up. He wasn’t even allowed to visit her…Can you believe that. Abusive people can manipulate any system when they want to at least for some amount of time.So protecting yourself from abusers is really important.Getting documents and so forth because thesee people are so devious.

    Jeese sorry for ramblin’ on! Hope you don’t mind!

    And yes it is an important to me.

  12. Evan says:

    I don’t mind you rambling at all Diane. I’m glad your sister-in-law got it sorted out. Legal processes can be very clumsy when it comes to human relationships I think.

    Thanks for the compliment, I do try to understand (but don’t claim to always succeed by any means).

    Thanks for your very personal comment.

  13. Mark says:


    I like when you get personal on your site. It opens up a window where one can peek in and see some of the meat and potatoes that make you unique.

    I believe in the institution of Marriage. It’s just so much warmer then saying My girlfriend or my partner.

    Congratulations on your Marriage. And I also agree that Mature love is comfortable love to be in. Now I bet Momma would just like it if I got the “Mature” part down.

  14. Evan says:

    Yeah, mature is the hard bit. I’m always in a dilemma about being personal. How do I be personal and focus on the reader at the same time. Maybe just by inserting a post like this now and then. Sometimes there are personal issues I’m working on or have worked on and so can add this to the topic. I don’t work through my stuff quickly enough to do this for every post. Any guidance on this (from you or anyone else) is most welcome.

    Thanks for your comment Mark.

  15. sarah luczaj says:

    no energy to go into the marriage issue right now(!), but I must say I like the odd personal post too (and am a little curious about what you had for breakfast!)

  16. Evan says:

    Hi Sarah,
    Glad you like the personal post. I have coffee (black) the muesli for breakfast.

    Actually, now that you raise it I wonder what you have for breakfast too. Is there a typical Polish breakfast? Thanks for your comment.

  17. sarah luczaj says:

    oh my answer will probably be far too revealing – I have a different breakfast every day 🙂 porridge, eggs, chinese stir fry, toast, museli, left-overs, cornflakes, whatever! it is certainly never typical Polish though, which would involve a lot of ham and cheese. (I’m a vegetarian).

    The coffee remains the same.

  18. Evan says:

    Not sure that it is revealing enough. Interesting about the Polish breakfast. Thanks for your comment.

  19. Evan says:

    There is a British genius for understatement isn’t there?

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