Monday, August 18, 2008

Good news.

I know I mentioned a few posts ago that I had good news to share with you all.
Andy and I are engaged.
As a feminist, marriage is a concept I’ve struggled with. On the one hand, something about weddings has always appealed to me. They are pretty, it’s nice to celebrate love, they bring together family and friends who don’t often see each other. On the other hand, marriage is an institution with a pretty tarnished history. It isn’t exactly a pillar of equality. Weddings themselves are imbued with patriarchal and religious symbolism, and the language of traditional weddings is really abhorrent (honour and obey? Fuck off). And contemporary weddings have become a huge profit-making industry—I read last week that the average Aussie wedding costs $40,000.
However, not all weddings and marriages have to fall into that model. There are a lot that don't. I think that if both individuals are aware of the problems, they can be overcome. And for that reason, I felt comfortable saying yes when Andy asked me to marry him (in a very non-traditional manner). He gets it. I’m not saying our relationship is perfect—if it were, we would probably both be pretty bored. But, over the past four years we have both been challenged, and we’ve worked together to achieve what I think is a pretty egalitarian relationship (of course, we’ll have to keep working together as the years progress!).
I’m over the moon about this new turn our relationship has taken. We’ve made no plans yet (and probably won’t for a while, given our schedules until December—he’s away for 6 weeks, then I’m away for a week, then his parents are here, then he’s away for a month, then I’m away for two weeks), but I’m looking forward to doing things our own way.

26 comments:

Andrea said...

Congratulations! :-) Here's to doing things your own way...

VeggieGirl said...

I've always enjoyed your posts that feature the time that you and Andy spend together, so this news is positively WONDERFUL - congratulations!!! :0)

Lauren said...

heyy, thanks for the comment..
and definitely a congrats on getting engaged. hope everything goes just how you want it to. :)

Vaala said...

Ooo, congratulations! That's awesome news! I know what you mean about the concept of marriage but I think it's up to the couple as to how you approach it ($40,000? Really?!! That's a mortgage on a house!). Looking forward to hearing updates :)

VeganCowGirl said...

hey yah! Congrats!
On a personal note - I too struggled with the concept of feminism and marriage, and decided that I didn't have to regig or compromise my feelings around women, equality and freedom by marrying K...I also didn't want a wedding that was silly and played into the wedding-machine. I am doing it my way, loving every minute of it and happy knowing that I found a man who supported my feminist-self!

Enjoy your engagement!!

Amy said...

Congrats! I always wanted to have a vegan wedding so I could have vegan cupcakes!!!

Nikki Douglas said...

How wonderful that you found someone that gets you - that is the most important thing of course. I am feminist and was married for 18 years to my husband who was completely supportive in every way. We had a very non-traditional marriage since he was 20 years older and he was essentially a house-husband while I went out and climbed the creative corporate ladder. Some people (including my family) looked askance at this but it was my choice and something I felt good about. I liked doing what I did and I liked the way our marriage worked in many ways.

We got married at the courthouse in Key West and had a small dinner together and then a small reception with family only. I don't believe in weddings, so I didn't have one.

The most important thing I learned was that your marriage is all about you and the person you are sharing your life with. That's it. So everyone else can just stuff it!

Best wishes and congratulations!

Anna said...

Wow! Theresa! That is so exciting! HUGE congratulations to you and Andy. I had similar problems with the "concept" of marriage before I got married too--for pretty much the same reasons as you--but it can be what you make it.

Kati said...

Hey, congratulations! I think your relationship or marriage is whatever you make of it, regardless of titles or technicalities. J and I have been together for six years (lived together for five) and haven't gotten married, which a lot of people find odd, but we like to do things our own way. From reading your blog for awhile now, that seems to be true for you as well. Here's to a lifetime of happiness and to not living according to others' standards!

Vegan_Noodle said...

That is awesome, congratulations! A someone who was also unconfortable with the "honor and obey" crap, it is totally possible to just make your wedding what you want. Sounds like you and Andy are a great, EQUAL match. Can't wait to hear more about it as yall figure out the details!

Amy said...

Massive congrats to you and Andy! I have a lot to say about feminism, weddings, and marriage, but as my own wedding is 19 days away, not much time to write now! You should check out kvetch.indiebride.com and offbeatbride.com. They've been great resources for me. We encountered some parental pressure when planning our (small, not very traditional and definitely not religious) wedding, but I am glad we insisted on doing things our way. I hope you enjoy the process of planning the wedding--it taught me quite a bit about myself and Scott.

Vegyogini said...

Congratulations to you both!

Alec said...

Congratulations! The way I look at it marriage should not change anything about people's relationships to each other, their roles in the relationship and household, how they view each other, etc. From what it sounds like, you aren't going to be expected to be the traditional little wifey. I know in our house I do the laundry, vacuuming, bathroom cleaning etc. (although my wife still INSISTS on doing most of the cooking even though I try to take over. She is a great cook though so I don't mind).

For the wedding itself, who says it has to be traditional? You could do 3 people on the beach if you wanted!

mad about udon said...

Congratulations!!

Bianca said...

Congrats! I feel the exact same way about marriage. I was super against it for years, but now that I'm older, it seems like it's not such a bad idea...just bad history.

If I do ever get married, I'm going to have male bridesmaids (cause my best buds are dudes) and someone will make a statement in the beginning about how it's not fair that gay people can't marry in America. And as much as I love my dad, he's not "giving me away" because I'm no one's property.

Just think though...now you get to start thinking about all that yummy vegan wedding food...and of course, egg-free wedding cake. Yea!

The Vegan Snorkeler said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!! That is great news. I'm so happy for you!

Groover said...

Congrats and fully understand your view point. I'm not into the whole wedding thing either and don't see a reason why we should get married. AMR and I are together for over eight years and we know that we belong together. We couldn't possibly be any more committed. No need for rings, white dresses and $40,000 wedding :-)

Vegetation said...

Awww Theresa, a HUGE Congratulations from me! (sorry I am WAY behind in my blog reading and only just read this!! I can't believe I missed it!).

And yes, marriages can be done any way you like. I had a very non traditional wedding (well I wore a white dress but that was about as traditional as it got) and yeah, honour and obey never crossed our lips :D

lengslog said...

congrats! wedding planning is going to be fun (eh..)

drossolalia said...

Congratulations, and well said!

Alice (in Veganland) said...

Aw, sorry it's taken my so long to comment on this, even though I read it when you wrote it because I couldn't resist the good news title ;-).

I'm really happy for you and Andy. Congratulations! I agree that not all weddings have to be expensive and cheesy. What matters is what it means to you!

Mandee said...

Congratulations! It's funny, over the last few days on a number fo vegan blogs there have been announcements of engagements or wedding plans and most say the same thing, they want to do it their way. I think it's fantastic :) xox

Sanja said...

Ah, that's great, congratulations!

David J said...

Hey congratulations!
I don't think you have to be too worried about falling into a traditional patriarchal stereotyped relationship. I doubt this is what your man would be interested in anyway.
I'm sure you'll be challenged in all sorts of other ways though. Marriage can be tough, to commit to someone is a great gift of love. Congratulations to you both.

Veggie said...

Congratulations! That's great news, don't worry about the so called 'traditional' your relationship is your own.

Liz² said...

congratulations!! 4 years together and you two must have an egalitarian dance going indeed. a toast to you guys! :D