traditional marriage and feminism

Stumbled across this post at DoubleX yesterday. Group of young feminist bloggers trash talking marriage and all things wedding mostly, but what struck me about it was the focus on details. As if tossing bouquets and ugly bridesmaid dresses were the point of relationships and marriage at all.

“It’s details,” I complained to Rob. “Why do people get so bogged down in minutia of marriage that they miss the point of the relationship that marriage is supposed to be all about?”

“Everyone can’t be as enlightened as we are,” he replied.

I know I’ve beaten this horse before, but intimate relationships are built on communication and an understanding of expectations by both parties. Whether a woman keeps her maiden name, wears white or decides to stay home with babies is really beside the point. It’s like shaved legs.

Shaved legs?

I wrote a post for 50 Something a week or so back about the fact I don’t shave during the winter. It’s pointless, as no one sees my legs really and it’s itchy besides. In my post I stress that my hairy legs are just hairy legs. It’s a practical decision that in no way should be misconstrued as a feminist statement. Things are simple, and female, should take care to avoid “statement” status in the realm of feminism because they usually become so entangled in nonsense they end up undermining feminism’s real point – equality.

The same can be said of these ridiculous debates on the “tradition” of marriage. Marriage is just a formalizing of an ongoing intimate relationship. The trappings are details. That’s all. They reflect personal or religious tastes – for which there is no accounting.

Whether a couple goes Disney princess or jeans/t-shirt on a mountain top doesn’t matter as much as the journey that brought them there or the continuation of it after that moment has passed.

I am no less equal to my husband because I took his last name or wore white. Getting married in a church or on a river bank surrounded by mountains (and I’ve done both – in white) was a moment – shining and special, imo – in something that began earlier and will continue until one of us is gone.

I suppose it is important to define one’s self, but turning everything into a symbol or anti-symbol seems a waste of energy better spent elsewhere.