Day 10 – What does marriage mean to me?



Huh I think you’re going to get more of a feminist answer to that one than a queer answer. When gay marriage just wasn’t a thing of course I supported it, after all equality of relationship opportunities is something I believe in.

However, I am not the biggest fan of marriage. At least for myself I mean. I do love a big party and people shouting from the rooftops (ideally figuratively) that they love each other very much. Hell, making oaths in public is something I as a pagan am very much behind.

But then there’s the serious bit, the bit that for me I think is always going to tie into Respectability politics and adopting A Pose rather than being real. The bit where you shape your relationship into the government approved and sanctioned form rather than figure your own one out. Yes I do appreciate that some people are very self reflective and develop their own relationships and happen to marry because they are close enough to fit the approved shape. But for me, there’s a fake feeling to the way weddings shake down into marriages.

Beyond that when The Princess got married she and I discovered quite how many hidden in plain sight beaurocratic sexisms there were. Stuff like Dad being expected to sign parts of the paperwork and my sister having to get creative to get Mul onto it.

Marriage is to me an occasionally necessary evil, my French parents set an example of what is to me the epitome of marriage. Until I was twenty five or six they were not married, they got married at that point quietly, in a registry office for the tax break. A quiet and practical thing, for paperwork, which has very little to do with love.

Love is best declared wildly, loudly and publicly but there’s no reason it has to have paperwork to go with it.

But then sometimes you’re faced with an airline who won’t tell you where your partner is or similar and that stupid beaurocracy becomes quite attractive. There are ways to do marriage I suppose, it’s the Manly Vikings way that sticks with me. He and his triple, all three of them stood in front of the celebrant and everyone knew they were saying a big fuck you to monogamy but they played along as did the congregation because we were in Liverpool and all felt palpably anti authority in those moments.

There are ways to do marriage. Most of them I’m not fond of. But a lot of that has to do with the interplay of personal relationships seeking external approval rather than personal relationships standing up and letting people know that they’re there. When discrimination exists I’ll fight for equality but I don’t want to be validated by others but rather recognised as their equal.

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