I Don’t Believe In Marriage Because Its Origins Are Bullshit

I read an interesting article over at The Atlantic that echoed a lot of my thoughts on “the end of men” and “the rise of women” two ideas which have recently been creating a lot of tension and a lot of stupid things said in the media. First of all, I don’t believe in marriage. Let me be clear I am talking about marriage, not relationships. I am talking about the “contract” between two people. I don’t understand why love should be a contract commissioned by “God” or the government.

I especially don’t like it because it has been a tool used to systematically exclude and disenfranchise people like same-sex couples, interfaith and interracial ones. I don’t like that marriage’s origins are founded in the belief that women are property who get sold to men. I don’t like its political origins either: countries selling their daughters as political strategy. I don’t like how it’s used to reproduce a male patriarchy by enforcing gender roles on women and on men. I don’t like that in some parts of this country, which is supposed to be “civilized,” my friends cannot get married. I don’t like that if I had been born in another country I could have been sold to some stranger at age twelve. Don’t get me started on the virgin until marriage thing.

I don’t like that if you’re an unmarried woman of a certain age, people will perceive you as a failure. I don’t like that women are conditioned to believe marriage is a goal and that men are to believe it is something they have to tolerate but will hate. I don’t like that I am expected by society to only ever “really love” one person. I don’t like that being married somehow qualifies you for certain privileges and that those who are excluded from the right to marriage do not have those privileges. It is all bullshit. All of what marriage is and how it is defined is by bullshit.

In my opinion the institution of marriage is an inherently oppressive institution because it is tied up with government, organized religion, archaic views of gender and prejudice. In The Atlantic piece Amanda Steinberg discusses how some whiney old dudes are pissed about women rising in the workplace because they can’t fathom seeing women leave the kitchen for two seconds.

“David Granger [of Esquire] agonizes that the definition of ‘what a man is…will become smaller and more restrictive.’ He’s terrified that for men, the ubiquity of patriarchal privilege can only be replaced with a kind of flaccid subservience that has been familiar to women for centuries. Female empowerment is met with castration anxiety.”

Oh no, being a man won’t mean being the boss, bringing home the bread and ignoring your children anymore. Sorry that a woman who makes a lot of money and has succes seems more like a punishment than an opportunity to build a better life with more fun vacations and better sandwiches. I am so sorry. Why is there so much shame in child bearing and housework? Why is that “women’s work” and not “shit that needs to get done or our children will grow up to be psychopaths and we’ll live in squalor?”

The point of the “rise of women” is to eliminate gendered expectations of people and the preconceived notions about one’s competence or ability that come along with that. We want men and women to be EQUAL not for women to become evil, privileged entitled men.

These moronic people say, “marriages are failing” because women have jobs. No, you stupid motherfuckers, marriages are failing because dumb asses like you don’t know how to adjust. Women today are allowed to be professional, despite making 77 cents to the dollar of every man, even less if you are a woman of color. The problem is that the burden of child bearing and household duties are still on women. The problem is not that some women’s roles in marriages are changing it’s that some men are refusing to change.

This is why marriage is bullshit because after thousands of years it convinced people to believe that men are THIS and women must be THAT or the entire world will explode because men can’t possibly do the dishes and women can’t possibly make educated decisions about finance.

If you want to get married and announce your love to your significant other go right ahead, I am sure you are doing it for the right reasons and a lot of feminist and progressive people do. I get it: you want to express your love and make if official in some way. I just wish it didn’t have to be within the confines of something that has an awful legacy.

The Marriage Wiki is enlightening

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  1. Brittany says:

    I am really disappointed in this article and where CC seems to be headed in general. I respect that everyone has different views on marriage but there are many people who get married for religious reasons that don't subscribe to the idea that women are subservient to or worth less than men. Some women are happy to take on the role of SAHM after getting married because that is how they believe things should be. Maybe you believe they're brainwashed but you can't make such a sweeping generalization like that. I agree that governments/societies have used religion and marriage to hold many, many people down for things such as skin color, gender and sexual preferences and I agree that that's wrong. With that being said, this doesn't mean marriage is completely and totally built to be oppressive. Bad people are oppressive and use marriage as a tool to further their agenda. I know plenty of loving, religious couples and there are some with SAHM and some where the woman gave up her job to care for the kids. I have never heard any of them say they feel oppressed or held back because they all married good men. The problem lies in choosing a bad partner or having a bad one chosen for us. The first part is a personal problem, the last one is a government/society problem.

    With all that being said, I have been a loyal reader of CC for almost 2 years now but I will be removing it from my reading list after this piece. Besides the advertisements getting out of hand, there have been several (IMO questionable) articles published recently in need of better proofreading and I wonder if maybe the author AND the editor should have slept on the idea before deciding to publish. Some of the pieces published over the last month and a half or so have seemed like angry, bitter reactions to things seen rather than well thought out opinions that take into account every side. I wish you luck in your job as editor, Emerald and I hope you do well in the big city :)

    1. Alex- University of South Carolina says:

      Hey Brittany! I too appreciate your well-constructed feedback on Emerald's piece. I encourage you and all our readers to speak out on more posts you don't agree with, as our primary goal here at CC is to promote conversation and the dissection of polarizing topics.

      CollegeCandy is a collection of many writers — some in college, some recently graduated, even a few men — who have grown up in different locations, with different advantages and struggles. The beauty of a site like ours is that we have at our access so many interesting and varying viewpoints.

      We're a fun, dysfunctional family that might not always agree, but we can usually inspire each other to have great discussions and even a few laughs. I hope we can do the same for you.

    2. emeraldgritty says:

      I appreciate your comment because it is constructive and well-intentioned, and am sad that you don't like CC anymore. However I would like to point out that I did say, "If you want to get married and announce your love to your significant other go right ahead, I am sure you are doing it for the right reasons and a lot of feminist and progressive people do. I get it: you want to express your love and make if official in some way. I just wish it didn’t have to be within the confines of something that has an awful legacy."

      I totally understand that people get married for personal and good reasons. My issue is
      with the INSTITUTION of marriage, which extends to issues with organized religion and government, not the idea that people want to share their love and officialize it in some capacity. Many of my friends want to get married or are married and I am happy for them.

      Having a fair and balanced opinion doesn't mean you need to take into account every side. Not every side of an argument is valid or has equal weight. I am personally never going to see those who oppose same-sex marriage as a valid point of view because the denial of those rights is actually unconstitutional. So why humor it? I am never going to take the opinions of those who believe dinosaurs and humans inhabited the earth at the same time when there is overwhelming scientific proof to the contrary. These are just some examples, to let you know where I am coming from.

      If I offended your religious sensibilities, I hope you know that was not my intention. I am not religious but I don't hate or dismiss people who are. I just think that there are beliefs and there are facts and they are two separate things but not mutually exclusive to an individual, however they should remain separate when making larger decisions about the general public.

      As far as articles go the intention of the website is to give a diverse group of young women voices. We're not going to silence them because they might be offensive. We want to challenge people's ideas and their sense of humor. We prefer to have contradictory voices because it is more interesting to us than simply pandering to our readers with "neutral" stories that don't make them second guess themselves or culture.

      I understand if this isn't your flavor of writing and respect your decision to opt out of it. Just letting you know where I am coming from since you were kind enough to let me know.

  2. Ginny says:

    I'm also unfollowing CC after 3 years… Emerald should get her own blog to discuss these types of opinions, posts lately don't seem "college candy" to me at all. Whether I agree with your opinions or not, you aren't bringing up these ideas as much as steamrolling us with it. Your demeaning, rude tone and your overgeneralizing makes people want to disagree with whatever you say. also, I do follow political blogs and social issue blogs but 1. They are better spoken than you and 2. That isn't why people subscribe to this website. This post is pretty much the antithesis of college candy. oh well. We always have college fashion right?!

  3. ashleyhlynch says:

    I enjoyed this article. I just tweeted female empowerment is met with castration anxiety. That was dead on. I also emailed the article to a friend and I told her that I didn’t agree with the view on marriage but I liked the rest. It’s true that some used the institution to control women. Therefore we need articles like this to get out to everyone that we shouldn’t use the institution of marrige to single out people like older women who have yet to marry or same sex couples. I believe everyone everyone deserves to be loved and its bullshit to think only a certain type can give that to you.

  4. barancypeloma says:

    77 cents on the dollar is b.s
    here is a simple fact that destroys that false assertion:
    businesses either succeed or fail. businesses are interested in maximizing profits whenver and wherever they can. if they could get away with paying someone equally as capable only 77% of the rate that they paid someone else- who do you think is getting that job?
    if it were true that women only made that amount to a man for the same job- most men would not be able to find a job at all.

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