June 12, 2011 - kenshinjeff
Marriage and beyond
So now that I’m officially married I can write about marriage topics. LOL!
Here’s how the general line of questioning goes:
When you’re single, questions that people ask may sound like this:
- At high school or family reunions or even worst, at weddings, people will ask where your partner is, it’s about time you found a life partner, oh you changed a partner, again? Etc. etc. You know the drill.
When you do have a partner,
- Concerned friends will ask are you sure? Isn’t it too fast/too slow?
- At events, generally people will ask so when’s the big day? Where is your BTO located?
Just before you get married,
- WHEN IS THE STAG PARTYYYYYYYYYY!?!!!??1111
On the actual day,
- Where is the after party, am I invited? I noticed, some people will ask this regardless of their actual interest to attend.
- Where is the banquet?
- Where is my food, why does it taste so bad?
When you are married,
- So when do we get to eat red eggs? How many children are you having?
- So how’s marriage life for you going?
When you have a child, I assume people would start asking
- So where is your kid studying? How are their grades?
- Will he/she/it have a sibling?
And hopefully, after your children are settled down to their own families,
- Oh it’s about time you can finally retire eh?
Don’t get me wrong, some of these questions are from genuinely concerned people in my own social circle. People who are my good friends, who care about my well being, and my future. It’s just very irritating for me to hear the same questions over and over and over again. For one, I could be very defensive about my would-be, unhatched plans, that’s why I don’t like these questions but I hope I’m not. LOL.
Anyway, the point is I’m trying make is the current state of social perception with relationships relating to these questions.
Point A: Most people feel that everyone should have a life partner, and you shouldn’t have to try too hard to find the one.
I totally get the first part, because I am guilty of feeling that way too, till today, I have yet to meet anyone who has had a reasonably better life than without a life partner. So I can reasonably assume that it is always to find someone who can complete you in one way or another.
What I don’t get is the second part. Everybody who has a partner should know it’s not that easy to find a suitable partner, so why it that people is are always giving the looks when you change a partner. Come on man, not everyone is fortunate enough to hit the target on their first attempt. There is nothing wrong with being in multiple relationships over a reasonable period of time. Of course, I’m not saying that multiple partners simultaneously, nor do I mean having 4 partners within a span of 6 months.
There is nothing wrong with anyone trying their best in a relationship, getting heartbrokened if it doesn’t work, and trying again the next time round.
Point B: The fun of stag parties and hen nights
I try to make it a point to have large birthday parties with a large number of my friends because I think it’s a great excuse to celebrate the coming of age with people whom I care. Also, it gives people a break from mundane work. But I am indeed getting old and lazy to organise large dinner outings and it is very tiring to do so. After all, it is my birthday and I can decide what to do with it, right?
A stag party is usually the excuse to go wild with a group of friends on the pretext of the groom’s would be demise after getting married. Watch Hangover the movie for reference. The ultimate formula for a fun night = An outing on stag night + whatever happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. That implies that all would be forgiven on stag night, no matter what one does, as long as you are in the same party as the groom. I don’t quite understand how that works, but it seems to be socially accepted for some reason. Am I the only one who thinks this way?
1A. Does this imply that being married is very restrictive, and the would-be spouse knows that, and is giving the green light for a stag/hen night?
1B. Is it just a weak excuse for having a “fun” night out at the expense of the groom?
As I write this thousand word long article (yes, I counted), I am beginning to think that it is more fun for the groom’s friends than the groom. And it actually makes more sense for the groom’s friends to celebrate a joyous event of getting married. After all, a responsible life partner should dedicate his/her resources towards his/her partner, and henceforth have fewer resources to spend outside the relationship. Which brings me to an interesting viewpoint.
1C. Assuming that all relationships are in good order to begin with before getting actually married. (Which btw, should be the case to begin with). Does the act of having the stag/hen parties actually mean that the corresponding spouse understands that once in a while, while in a relationship, it is absolutely fine to for your partner have a night’s out of fun to indulge themselves? That would be reasonable right? Of course, I’m talking about reasonable fun, from responsible adults. Makes sense right?
This act itself requires trust, which is actually be good in maintaining a relationship.
Point C: I have noticed that people like to ask what’s different after getting married.
I honestly don’t know how to answer this question in a way that fulfills the question. What exactly is the point of this question? Is there a deeper meaning to it?
1A. Does this imply that things will change for the better or worst after getting married? Do people expect things to change?
1B. if there is indeed a change, does this mean that there are expected changes in a relationship before and after getting married?
1C. Are spouses expected to be better to each other? And also to be nicer to their respective families and friends?
1D. Are they expected to work harder so that they can raise their own family?
1E. Do people want to know your joys/struggles after getting married so that they can be more prepared for a drastic change in their lifestyle? Or is this part of a standard conversation opening?
2A. if there is no change, is there no point to getting married?
Let’s assume that I don’t like a particular person from my spouse’s side, it could be a friend it could be a relative.* Am I now obliged by social norms and blood ties to be nicer to that person because of my marital status? If I do so without actually changing my view of that person, wouldn’t I be hypocritical? Would it be unreasonable for my spouse to insist that I change my preference to that particular person? If it is so important to my spouse, why didn’t I make a better attempt at this relationship before actually getting married? Did I not attempt to be in a better relationship to this person? Did I not understand this unwritten rule prior to getting married?
Everyone is responsible for their own actions and inactions. Responsible to themselves, their family, their friends, their spouse, their spouse’s family, their spouse’s friends, their neighbours, their job, their society. You are a reflection of the people you hang out with, and vice versa. (This includes the people you don’t like, in case I wasn’t very clear). How a person behaves impacts on others, reflects on your upbringing, and how people perceive you, and make friends/enemies out of you. I believe that as long as you keep this in mind, you will be a good person, a good partner, a good co-worker, a good superior, a good parent, a good son, a good daughter, a good sibling, a good father, a good mother, a good in-law, and a good everything.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”
“Goodness begets goodness”
“You sow what you reap”
“With Google, I can quote all day long, in 57 different languages, but you get what I mean.”
There are no bad people in this world, just badly misguided ones.
*btw just in case anyone is curious, I do like everyone, just in different quantities, and of course, because disliking anyone takes a lot of effort, and it is _really_ very tiring and pointless to do so. At this point, I would like to think that I should be more suited be a preacher instead of a manager. Then again, knowing myself, I would try to make a business out of a religion, and get sued in the near future. LOL!
Point D is just on a whim, because I find it particularly amusing that people in general are pretending to be oblivious to the fact that other unmarried people are having sex before marriage, and immediately after getting married, it’s okay to have sex to have children. Oh the other hand people are also particularly interested in knowing who’s having sex with whom.