Unmarry Me

Oumaima Abdellatif
English Teacher, Academic Researcher, and Writer
3 minutes

For many, the idea of weddings is superbly romantic, a celebration of unity and love. Meanwhile, others view it as simply an outdated ritual ingrained in societal shackles.

What Makes a Marriage Go Wrong? Perhaps there was a time when human beings were irrational and disconnected. Once we discovered we were Homo sapiens, the narrative has changed. We became social beings wired by feelings and guided by rules. The social institution has shed its shadow on humanity and has imposed a certain regime on us; one that is conducted by laws and regulations. The governmental regime has built constructions for humans to keep sane and secure. Religion has also imposed its practices to try and maintain our impulsiveness. Yet, despite all efforts, one thing has remained entailed to the human dilemma; feelings. Among the rules that have been constructing our lives, I find marriage to be one of the most complicated.


Why Is Marriage So Complicated?

It is not easy to put one’s life under the microscope. Once a person gets married, they ought to share their life details with another human being. Originally, they are meant to share a roof, a goal, and a life with another. No wonder why people sometimes get anxious and worried. Some would even change their minds and get cold feet at the last minute. The concept of runaway brides started with the story of Jennifer Carol Wilbanks who ran away from home in 2005 to avoid her wedding from her fiancé at the time. Although the reasons behind her runaway differ from the most prevailing ones why brides choose to cancel their marriage altogether at the very last minute, Jennifer is considered a milestone that has participated in the spread of a phenomenon. In some countries, women still find themselves obliged to marry someone they didn’t choose, don’t have feelings for, or haven’t even met. In such cases, physical and social pressures are pointed at women. Hence, according to feminist theories, the act of “runaway brides” allows them to reinvent themselves and speak up against a socially-oriented regime.

On the other hand, a different phenomenon can be prescribed to men under the same label. According to MADAMENOIRE magazine, the reasons that force men to leave their weddings minutes before it is due to vary. Yet, they come down to the point where “wedding planning can be one of the most stressful experiences a couple has ever seen”. However, cases of runaway grooms have been recorded seconds after the marriage is done. In such cases, grooms often leave their brides once they have a handful of the joint ownership of the properties. The planning does not coincide with the ceremony!


How to BE Okay?

Whether it be for social or economic reasons, people do often freak out once they get their relationships to the point of getting married. But, why? Marriage is an institution based on an ethical and legal promise made between two parties. It establishes the grounds for reuniting and constructing a family. Theoretically, this act is mainly guided by love. Yet, in the not-so-many years that I have lived, I have learned one or two things about marriage. The most important one is that it has little to do with one’s love for another, and so much to do with one’s love for the self.

According to Gibran Khalil Gibran, the secret recipe for a successful relationship that can last for marriage is balance. Relying on another human being to figure you out, and sorting out your mental breakdowns, psychological wars and battles with success and financial status have always been condemned to fail. Loving someone else and committing to them can never be crowned with success unless it comes from loving oneself. Even if marriage gets down the hill, a well-balanced person can stand up for themselves to collect the pieces, and learn to trust again.

“Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your soul. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,” -Gibran Khalil Gibran-



The article represents the views of its writer and not that of LEED Initiative.