PhDork: Oh ugh. I don’t know if your FB friends do this or not, but I have a friend whose every post (which appear to be several per day) is about how her fiance proposed, and her ring, and her wedding planning, and how much weight she needs to lose to fit into her dream dress.
SarahMC: STFU! I see those updates and I just…can’t. I wish this stuff didn’t make me feel disgusted but it does. It seems like people just get hitched once they reach the age where they feel like they should be married, grabbing whomever they happen to be dating at the time. Seriously everyone I know is getting married or having children and their obnoxious, coy Facebook statuses are unbearable. Just the other day I thought to myself–well at least (my friend) J isn’t married yet. Last night she changed her profile picture to a photo of her hand with an engagement ring on it. Cue the hordes of well-wishers squealing about the ring.
PhDork: Yeah, it’s gross. You’re at that age, I think, when some people start getting panicky if they haven’t checked “catch a man” off the list, and the whole world (well, 99.5% of it) is saying ‘here! this is how to behave! buy some stuff!’ Barrrrrrfffff.
Or you might just be irritated since you’ve been in a happy, functional, romantic relationship for years without losing your bloody mind to Pritty Princess Lottery Winner SQUEEEEEE!!!111!!! Syndrome.
BeckySharper: Totally second that. When you get to be 35 like me and Dorky it’s all warnings about your sad, aging ovaries and “OMG, you didn’t pop out a couple of kids and fulfill your WOMANLY DESTINY yet!” while you watch your FB friends post pictures ever fucking day of their babies (who look exactly the same today that they did yesterday) and their pregnant bellies and even—this actually happened recently—a picture of herself in a bikini a couple weeks after giving birth so they can extol the virtues of postpartum weight loss. The Mommy Industrial Complex snatches women’s brains as surely as the WIC.
SarahMC: I knew I could count on you. Otherwise I feel very alone. It is seriously made about 50% worse by the fact that SO MANY people congratulating my friend are focused on her ring. I will be expected to grab her hand and gawk over Thanksgiving break but I will not! The Wedding Industrial Complex makes me have very uncharitable thoughts about other women.
But really, my objections have nothing to do with that and everything to do with the crass materialism and chauvinism of the whole deal, and with the fact that it glorifies only one type of relationship. Like you said, your relationship with your boyfriend or Dork’s relationship with the Dude is just as worthy of celebrating and putting on a pedestal.
SarahMC: Yeah I really can’t complain to anyone because I know they will think I’m just impatient from waiting eight years for my own proposal. I couldn’t possibly have real objections to the sexism or superficiality. If you get married after dating a year, people are thrilled for you. If you’ve “just” been together for a decade, people pity you. Unless you’re a man, in which case people think you’ve gotten one over on her.
BeckySharper: Exactly. It’s like Prince William’s fiancee being called “Waity Katie” because she’s 28—gasp!—and he hadn’t proposed. Every time they went to a wedding together the British press got all concern-troll-y: ”Kate must be sad because she’s not the bride.” When really, I suspect she quite content and telling him “Please don’t throw me into the shark tank yet.”
PhDork: Liss had a post on Kate’s silence that was really interesting—she’s notoriously press-shunning but it’s being spun as “She has to zip it to catch her man” rather than “Good god, you vultures, leave me the eff alone.”
BeckySharper: I am like that when it comes to gay weddings, too. If gay people want to be as obnoxious and materialistic as heteros, more power to them. That’s equality, and they’re entitled. And I do tend to be more “YAY, WEDDING” for gay weddings too, because it represents such a social and personal victory that a little extra celebration is called for, IMO.
SarahMC: I concur. It just kills me that a woman will get more well-wishes and congratulations on an engagement announcement than she would if she cured cancer. My lady friends don’t get tons of attention when they get their degrees or travel around the world or accomplish something but when men validate them? THAT CALLS FOR A CELEBRATION!
BeckySharper: Yes, being chosen by a man is the ultimate prize in womanhood! Which wouldn’t bother me if being chosen by a woman was seen as equally important to a man’s self-image…but…no. You will see no obnoxious, never-ending FB status updates from men about their weddings and their babies.
Anyone else out there want to join our circle of hateration?