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about 'umarried' mothers?

(291 Posts)
Thurlow Sat 03-May-14 11:55:55

I probably am being. I just want a rant. I have seen so many comments on MN over the past few months about unmarried mothers where the assumption is that you are only unmarried because one of you, usually the man, is a non-committal waste of space, and that he has no right to share a name with any DC because he hasn't bothered to put a ring on it.


Yes, it's only words on screen, but I'm starting to feel an overwhelming belief out there that unmarried couples are less committed than married couples. As someone in a very long-term relationship who made the joint decision not to marry as it wasn't for us, and who - sin of sins - gave their DC their father's surname, it just leaves me with the impression that I am being judged by most people as less committed. It's not a cheerful impression to have.

This isn't a rant against marriage - it just wasn't for us as a couple. And it's not a debate about marriage because I know that legally it brings so much protection, which is not relevant to our current situation.

I'm just getting royally narked with all the 'if you like it you should have put a ring on it' comments I've seen lately.

And breathe...

Joules68 Sat 03-May-14 12:05:26

You must keep skipping back through a time warp into the 1950's then, as I've just seen the one thread here and nothing in RL!

As a comeback I'd offer ' I don't fancy joining tha massive divorce statistic and being stigmatised as a divorcee'

frogslegs35 Sat 03-May-14 12:08:59


If it works for you and it's what you've BOTH decided then ignore.

It's a completely different issue if you do want to marry and he doesn't.

thebodylovesspring Sat 03-May-14 12:12:45

I can't believe anyone in RL or on mumsnet cares a toss whether anyone is married or not.

Maybe in 1956 but not now.

gotnotimeforthat Sat 03-May-14 12:13:16

I agree I have been told countless times that my partner isn't committed to me and that our relationship is doomed to failure because we are not married. And because we are not married now he will never have the intention of marrying me in the future apparently :/

DS came as a surprise, we was not planned. He was lied and welcomed but in an ideal world I wouldn't of got pregnant for another 5 years at least. Because of this
marriage has taken a back seat.

DS shares his dads last name too. To be honest I don't see how having a piece of paper declaring your commitment to each other alters you as a parent and a partner. You can be happy and committed without spending a fortune on a huge white wedding.

gotnotimeforthat Sat 03-May-14 12:14:13

He was loved and welcomed* damn auto correct.

Mrsjayy Sat 03-May-14 12:15:51

I have not seen anything like that on here but if you have experienced it then I do think you need to just challange the myth, a lot of people do not agree with children having the fathers surname because they sometimes see it as the man being in charge, which i find weird, I was an unwed mother 22 years ago believe me it has got a lot better since then people were calling me MRS because i had a baby really ticked me off,

jasminemai Sat 03-May-14 12:17:01

People think your much more odd getting married in this day and age as everyone has babies, but hardly anyone gets married

5madthings Sat 03-May-14 12:17:36

Dp and I have been together 16yrs, five kids and a mortgage and we still get asked when we are going to get married or why we are not married and the assumption is that we are not committed.,

We have protected ourselves legally with wills etc but no we aren't in a committed relationship according to some..,

TillyTellTale Sat 03-May-14 12:18:30

I don't know about 'less committed' in general, because that's a leap I'm not prepared to make.

But unmarried couples are less legally protected. Marriage isn't the only solution to making sure you and your children are protected, but it's cheap and easy.

Have you got wills sorted out?

theduchesse Sat 03-May-14 12:18:31

DH and I are only married because we have different nationalities. Whichever country we choose to live in at least one of us will always be an immigrant and subject to visas and this is easier to do as a married couple. Our DS was planned and we had him a year before we got married. Having him represented a much bigger commitment to each other than getting married did. Divorce isn't particularly tricky but sharing the raising of a child for the rest of our lives would be if we separated.

pricklyPea Sat 03-May-14 12:20:29

I don't really care if people are married or not. What is funny to me is when people are together for years, have a house, have children and then decide to have a huge wedding, even funnier to have a gift list! I'm married but that was for legal purposes.

scarletforya Sat 03-May-14 12:22:59

I've never seen that!

I find it hard to believe there's anyone that backward still in this day and age. I won't get married because I just don't want to! It's a waste of money. I'd rather have a nice holiday!

pricklyPea Sat 03-May-14 12:26:43

You don't need to spend much to get married. Couple of rings and hire of the registry office is cheap. Surely same cost as two wills.

NearTheWindymill Sat 03-May-14 12:26:55

I always think MNet is rather "right on" about marriage/living together.

Isn't there statistical evidence though that says that people are more likely to stay together when they have children if they were married before having them than if they are unmarried or married after the children arrived? Sure I've read that in the context of outcomes.

As far as I'm concerned people can do exactly what they chose to do providing they can fund their lifestyles fully themselves.

uselessidiot Sat 03-May-14 12:28:24

I don't actually think being married guarantees commitment to being a parent. I was married to dd1's Dad when she was conceived. Didn't stop him being a sorry excuse for a father.

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 03-May-14 12:28:31

Marriage does represent commitment to me personally but it doesn't bother me that people don't and see other things as representing commitment.

It's just a different point of view. The most appealing thing so it marriage is the legal protection it offers. I am very romantic grin

jasminemai Sat 03-May-14 12:28:45

Getting married is one of the cheapest things you can do.

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 03-May-14 12:29:15

Erm...about not so it hmm

Kundry Sat 03-May-14 12:30:29

I don't give a toss whether you are married or not.

What confuses me is people who have kids with someone but then say they weren't sure if they were 'ready for marriage' - surely having kids is a lifetime link to their dad, if you weren't sure he was marriage material why did you think he was father material?

The other confusion is 'we have kids but can't afford to be married'. If you want to be married you can go and do it for the price of the registrar.

NotYouNaanBread Sat 03-May-14 12:32:03

Every relationship is different and unmarried couples with children (and presumably without) are statistically more likely to break up than married couples. You can be annoyed about people taking that information to make unfair assumptions about your own relationship, but it doesn't alter the fact.

meditrina Sat 03-May-14 12:32:33

Here is the MN page on the legal/practical differences between married and unmarried couples

ScarlettlovesRhett Sat 03-May-14 12:32:45

Marriage is the cheap, easy, straightforward way to ensure that the entire family unit is protected in the event of death or separation.

You can sort it all out without marriage, but this is more involved and complicated. If all marriage is to a person is a piece of paper, then I can't understand why you wouldn't choose that quick, easy option tbh.

Each to their own though, obviously - there is no 'right' or 'wrong' way, just different ways.

BalloonSlayer Sat 03-May-14 12:32:49

Sometimes people don't bother to get married because they feel so super-committed they don't think they need marriage to stay together and in love forever.

The number of massive weddings followed by divorce may have fuelled their opinions.

I do think however that a woman who is not married who gives her partner's surname to her children is unwise.

WorraLiberty Sat 03-May-14 12:34:23

I haven't seen this assumption on MN at all

However, I have seen a lot of posts from women who are waiting to be proposed to and getting fed up of their DPs making excuses/dragging their feet.

Why they don't do the proposing themselves, is beyond me.

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