Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

If it's not broken... would you bother getting married?

(28 Posts)
Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:18:51

Quite happy and settled in our relationship, one little bod and another on the way. We've had our fair share of ups and downs and I guess we've come to the point where it's naturally started being discussed. Here are the reasons for/ against in my mind:

For: I'm a bit old to be a 'girlfriend', love the idea of making the commitment to other half, ds would love it, better in terms of tax/ if one of you dies and all that boring practical stuff.

Against: hate the idea of spending a lot of money on one day (I know you don't have to but we have a v. large family/ friendship group so it would be either a case of excluding (and offending) or just going away etc and doing it (and offending). I hate being centre of attention so the idea of any form of ceremony holds no appeal at all.

I guess, in short, I love the idea of a marriage but not a wedding, but getting married without everyone there would cause such upset that I'm just not sure it's worth the bother.

Any opinions or anybody managed a happy medium? hmm

GhettoPrincess Thu 31-Jan-13 00:20:16

I worked with someone years ago who got married as her boyfriend who was the father of her child was South African and she was European and his visa was about to expire. They didn't invite her religious, formal family to the ceremony and it was to far for his family to travel to Britain so they got married in a registry office and kept quiet about it. Her family sometimes jokingly refer to her boyfriend as her husband and she wonders if it's going to be like a film that the day she fesses up, her family will grin and say, 'we know'.

I remarked that they could never get married again. She said they could if they got divorced ! By implication, would they then get divorced just so they could invite their families to the wedding ceremony and pretend it was first time around ? It would be taken as read that the ceremony would take place in church ? That could entail complications if the church does not care to marry divorcees. However, a lot of venues can have weddings these days.

In your case, just popping along to the registry office might just work. The 'circus', not to mention marketing excercise that some wedding preparations turn into might turn out to be a total nightmare that you will regret. Weddings can bring out the beast in people (no, that's not a spelling error).

DeafLeopard Wed 30-Jan-13 22:36:10

Do you actually need to tell people that you are married?

You could just do the registry office thing to protect yourself legally and financially and view it as just that.

Like scaveola stated upthread, there are important legal differences between being married and co-habiting.

OneMoreChap Wed 30-Jan-13 22:20:58

Family didn't much like us eloping (but we were in our 40s FFS).
Total bill about £600, including the week away in a hotel where we sloped off to to get married.

ManInBeige Wed 30-Jan-13 22:12:07

Best wedding I ever went to was a close friend. 24 people there, all close friends of bride and/or groom, nice registry office (some councils are really good and some are dreadful so check), good lunch, onto the pub for anyone else that wanted to come along.

nefertarii Wed 30-Jan-13 21:38:49

A wedding is about you as a couple. The same as a marriage is.

You parents would be really upset that you are getting married the way you want to? They will be upset that you don't want to spend a fortune on a day you don't want and won't enjoy? Why would people who love you guilt you into doing that?

I got married at 20 and have been for 10 years. Its right for me and dh. not for everyone.

Its really up to what you do. But going ahead with a big day and spending a fortune for others is not doing it for you, its doing it for others.

Thisisaeuphemism Wed 30-Jan-13 21:35:15

Oh but that was the party bit- the wedding itself- registry then afternoon tea was £500 max....
And it was strangely moving - even for another unromantic...

MortifiedAdams Wed 30-Jan-13 21:34:59

Quite honestly, nothing changed when we married and I was glad as I wasnt hoping it would.

We did it to have a day of celebration of the two of us and brining the family together (mine and his), and, like you, I felt daft saying BF and GF. We had been together eight years.

We did it very cheaply, but still had a hotel venue, 30 daytime and 100 night time and think the whole thing came to about 2k including the honeymoon.

Moanranger Wed 30-Jan-13 21:27:32

Why not just talk to your family? Explain your reasons -seem perfectly sensible to me. They may be more ok with it than you think. My view is that the cost of weddings has got completely out of hand & the best ones are a simple ceremony followed by a good old party - forget the Bridezilla stuff.
I am with those who think in your position being actually married is important.

OrangeLily Wed 30-Jan-13 20:58:03

Could you throw a party for a birthday/child naming/christening and just get married then and there? I know of a few couples who have done this. I didn't know either well enough to be invited though. G.u.t.t.e.d I frigging love surprise parties and the like! smile

wongadotmom Wed 30-Jan-13 20:52:40

If the relationship IS broken....then you should NOT bother getting married!

spiffysquiffyspiggy Wed 30-Jan-13 20:47:37

If they'd really be that bad them don't tell them. View it as a legal contract to secure your future rather than a wedding.

I knew my family would be fine but was a but worried about dh's. We are the only ones on both sides of the family who are likely to get married and I thought mil might be upset. In the end they were absolutely fine. Think they were just pleased that we'd finally done the 'decent' thinggrin

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:43:05

Squiify- totally agree that it won't change us, I was never a girl who had a dream wedding etc etc. I know logically that you can just go off and do it with nobody there but it just makes me wonder if the fall out is worth it.

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:41:22

Disco- two kids, ten years... you could be me!

Euphemism- £2000 still makes my eyes water! I think it's just when I think of what else we could do for that amount of money.

spiffysquiffyspiggy Wed 30-Jan-13 20:40:47

Married after 9 years and 3 children. We got our pension statements and realised that we'd be a lot better off being marriedgrin . 6 weeks later we got married in the registry office with our best friends as witnesses. We did tell friends and family afterwards but did debate not telling anyone.

If you don't want fuss then you don't have to have it- you can be in and out of the registry office in five mins. We did spend a lovely afternoon in the pub to celebrate thoughgrin

The only difference it has made to us is that financially we are a little more secure should one of us die. I don't feel more committed to him or that anything has changed. <stubbonly unromantic>

DiscoTent Wed 30-Jan-13 20:34:49

You could do the quiet registry office thing and then not tell anyone you'd done it? DP and I have 2DC, been together over a decade, can't be arsed with a wedding, but I do worry about the legal stuff - particularly in the event of one of us dying. I do sometimes wonder if we should...

Thisisaeuphemism Wed 30-Jan-13 20:34:26

I did - after reading lots of threads on Mumsnet

If you are sahm Ing for a couple of years, marriage is good protection.

We did it for less than £2000 and it was v special.

Viviennemary Wed 30-Jan-13 20:33:57

I think a good idea would be a meal during the day with only very close family, and then a party at night and invite everyone. But if you want to get married then not affording to shouldn't be preventing this. I think marriage is important.

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:32:57

scaevola... I like the sound of that. Still think not witnessing ceremony would cause big rifts with immediate family on both sides.

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:30:01

How did people take that onemore?

scaevola Wed 30-Jan-13 20:29:55

There are important legal differences between marriage and co-habitation, and there is noway to fully replicate all the things conferred by marriage (though joint holding of assets and proper wills do make a big difference).

If you don't want a ceremony, could you nip off for a quick registry office service to cover the legalities. Then hold a separate party to celebrate, with none of the traditional wedding fripperies, just your favourite people, maybe one or two speeches, and a blast of a party in the style you prefer?

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:29:38

Onemorechap- I actually earn more than dp though may change as hoping to go part time after dc2 comes along. I do know it makes sense for those reasons but still leaves awkward situation of actual wedding day. As I said, I have no issues at all with the idea of marrying dp.

OneMoreChap Wed 30-Jan-13 20:27:57

Oh, and we eloped and married in a registry office with no family or friends. It was a wedding for us.

Wiggy29 Wed 30-Jan-13 20:27:47

Dahlen, we could do the registry office with immediate family I suppose but parents would be devastated, I'm not sure they'd ever really forgive me. We are actually a very close family but we'd have to invite dp's family too and they are... a challenge!

Squitten- I know (about the will), I think that regardless of whether we marry or not we'll write get one as soon as 2nd dc arrives.

OneMoreChap Wed 30-Jan-13 20:27:14

Sorry, if you're a woman having kids with a man, and if your income is unequal or you're SAHM, I'd say you were crackers to not marry if you have the choice.

It offers so much more protection to you and the children, if your DP snuffs it, leaves you etc.

DW and I married despite knowing we couldn't have kids, mind, just because we wanted to.

Yama Wed 30-Jan-13 20:25:33

I was like you. I wanted a small, teeny, tiny wedding. Dh wanted the full shebang though so I just let him take over. It made him happy and actually it was great.

I realise I am no help.

Put it this way - a wedding should be no barrier to marriage.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: