Nobody takes their wedding vows seriously anymore.
With the divorce rate what it is, I don’t think anyone is too surprised by my conclusion, but this thought led me to asking a question: Why do we even make these promises when it seems like it’s become such a big joke to everyone? If we’re not going to keep this covenant we’re making with each other, what’s the point?
I take you to be my wifeThose are pretty traditional set of vows, and it’s even more common today for a bride and groom to write their own vows which often include much more personal – and much more specific – promises to each other. In good times and in bad. No matter what happens. As long as we both shall live.
To have and to hold
In good times and bad
For richer or poorer
In sickness and in health
Till death to us part
But so many marriages are ending after only a year or two, and often it’s because one or both parties decide it’s not what they were expecting and leave, all the while having family and friends around them say things like, “It’s okay. You deserve to be happy.”
Why aren’t we holding ourselves to the promises we’ve made. The whole idea of having “witnesses” at a ceremony is for them to confirm, “Yes, these people were were married and, yes, they did promise themselves to each other for the rest of their lives.” So why when people are announcing their divorces don’t we have more conversations like this one:
“But you promised you’d be together till death!”
“Yeah, but it’s just so hard. You just don’t understand what it’s like.”
“Then why didn’t you change ‘Till death do us part’ to ‘Till irreconcilable differences do us part’?”
Yeah it sounds rough, but marriage is a serious business and we’ve all done it a huge disservice by making a joke out of what is supposed to be one of the most important promises we ever make. Though I know there are about a million yeah-but-what-if’s when we're talking about cause for divorce, what I’m saying today is that if we don’t mean these things we say, we should certainly stop saying them. If you don't really mean "As long as we both shall live," then say what you really mean.