I can’t even make a guess of how many dumb t-shirts I’ve seen and jokes I’ve heard, that paint the picture that marriage means “game over” or a complete loss of freedom. Although I have never really related to any of these jokes, these are completely accurate depictions of how society views marriage and thinks it should be. Now this isn’t something new. I knew that the loss of my freedom and person-hood was something that was expect of me before I even got married, but it never really mattered to me until recently.
“Your husband let you do that?” “You’re husband is okay with you going there by yourself?” “Is your husband okay with you posting that?” It’s crazy, he even lets me dress myself! But, these are just a few questions that repeatedly find their way towards me. Although it’s not meant to be degrading or offensive, after a while they start to get to you and make you feel less of a person than other women. I recently had another women comment to my husband that he, “needs to not let me say hello to other men in public.” My husband and I had a good laugh about this but deep down it made me a little self-conscious.
I know that there is a mold that society expects us to conform to once we get married, like I should never go out again, I should gain 15 pounds (my doctor literally said this to me), start popping out babies, and only be concerned about my husband, but that’s just not my plan for myself. I have a career, I want to travel, and I have so many things I plan on accomplishing. Just because I vowed to love and be faithful to the same person for the rest of my life, doesn’t mean that I vowed to end my own. Being married should not mean loss of freedom. Yes, you should pay attention to what makes your partner uncomfortable and completely respect their wishes, but you do not loose a part of yourself, at least you shouldn’t.
I believe that in order to have a healthy, respecting relationship, each person in the relationship needs to continue to be their own person in some areas. Once you get married you do become one in the sense that your lives are now molded together, but that doesn’t mean that everything in your life needs to become one. How boring would life be if the two of you just had interests in the same exact things, had the same exact friends, went to the same exact places? What could you possibly ever talk about? It is good to have individuality and time where you do things on your own, because you can not put your whole life into another person if you truly want to be happy.
I am not my husbands property, I am not less than my husband, and my husband is not less than me. We are equal entities in our relationship and try our best to be fair and discuss our issues. I know this makes people uneasy. I bet there are some people imaging me as a big controlling wife that my husband cowers under, because when people say men and women should be equal they assume, “Women want to control men.” I guess I really can’t change how people think marriage or I should be, but I can at least can let it be known that Yes, I’m married AND LOVE MY HUSBAND, but yep, still livin’.
Peace out haters.