(Weddings aren’t even about marriage anymore, so why not elope?)
I dread the day when I have to propose to a woman.
Not because of how archaic the institution of marriage is, but because how diluted the message has become these days. What’s the first thing a girl’s friend asks when she gets engaged? “How did he propose”? Glossing over the fact that she (may have) just achieved one of her childhood dreams, they ask how it was done, instead of celebrating the fact that it was done. These days it’s all Internet flash mobs, hot air balloons, and jumbotrons. Men are one-upping each other. But what happened to simply just asking? And then there’s the actual wedding. The corporate money pit of endless decisions and self-inflicted stress. Caterers, bands, DJs, guest lists, color scheme, limos, priests, dresses, etc. Blecch. Why not elope?
It’s going to save you a ton of money.
Weddings have become a giant black hole of money and self-inflicted stress. Why invite all these people you don’t care about, to the eat food you paid for, just to get gifts you don’t really need. Keep it simple. How about you save the $20,000 it’s going to cost you, and put a down payment on a house. Or save for five awesome vacations. Or give the money to cancer research.
It’s just about the ceremony.
Now that it’s just about the two of you, you can get married wherever you want on the planet. Santorini, Paris, Bali, the Maldives, etc. I suppose, if you must, you can tell your parents but that takes away from the fun. Trust me, your family and friends will get over it. You can get married anywhere in the world, and go on the honeymoon at the same time. Now it’s truly about the ceremony and the symbolism of marriage.
You can’t explain romance. It just is, or it isn’t. Usually it can’t be bought either, much to the chagrin of flower and chocolate companies. It’s tailored specific to her and her personality, and the nature of your relationship. The bottom line with eloping though, is it’s romantic, because it’s just about the two of you.
If it’s your wedding, then make it about you. It’s not for your Mom. It’s not for your maid of honor. It’s for you and your future husband and it’s about the symbolism of your relationship. Sure, your family and friends will be sad they missed it, but they’ll get over it. They just want you to be happy. It’s about you. It’s about him. It’s about your marriage. Which is what this whole thing is about right?
So make it just about that, and go get married.
[Photo: A Parisienne couple that sat on the floor and discussed a paniting for thirty minutes at the Musee D’Orsay in Paris, France.]