You only get married for the first time once

“You only get married for the first time once” is the title of a Facebook album posted for a bridal shower I went to over the weekend. The gal who put the album together has an especially twisted sense of humor, but I have to give her credit for doing a solid job of encapsulating the feelings I took away from the event.

Don’t get me wrong – I am ecstatic for my friend that’s getting married. She is perfect, her man is terrific, and I hope they live happily ever after. The foreboding slogan was something I took more personally for my life and future partner(s). There was lots of talk of discontentment and sexless relationships. It was shocking to hear some of the beautiful young women reveal that they weren’t getting laid by their spouses—not because they didn’t want it but because their men didn’t want to give it. (The Facebook album creator, a recent divorcée, revealed that her one-year marriage fell apart when she began bullying her husband by flicking his flaccid penis and pretending it was a microphone. She’d tap it and say, “Is this thing on?”)

When it was time to open presents the guests all ooooo-ed and aaahhhh-ed at the tools for the kitchen that were masquerading as gifts. Someone even gave her a spatula with her future last name monogrammed into the wooden handle. To my embarrassment, I was the only one who bought sex toys. I assumed that a cheeky necklace that doubled as a vibrator would be a hit, but oddly the crowd all went nuts for the garlic cutter instead.

The word “settle” was thrown around quite a bit. One of the girls suggested having a harem of men, each with a quality we value, Mr. Fix-it, Mr. Romantic, Mr. Funny, Mr. Kinky, Mr. Cook, Mr. Rich, and Mr. Tattoos. It’s impossible to find someone with all these qualities, or at least none of these gals or myself has found him yet.

Granny is always trying to hustle babies out of me but a ring on my finger is far from anything I’ve ever heard her promote. I called Granny after the bridal shower and asked about her stance on marriage. The phone went silent, then after gathering her thoughts she said, “I need great-grandkids, I know that. Ya gotta give them to me before I die. Marriage, eh, that’s a gray area.”

Granny and my mother are both divorced. My view on marriage was never peachy, glowing, or fairy tale-like but it wasn’t something I felt opposed to either. I never gave it as much consideration as I’m beginning to now as I watch friends enter that stage of life.

“Listen, ya know Brad Pitt and Angela whatcha-ma-call-it,” Granny said, “They have a kennel full of kids but no vows exchanged. Now their children want them to seal the deal. I don’t think it matters what order you do it in, but I think eventually ya gotta take the plunge. You meet a guy that you’re suited with, you understand each other, you love each other, you want the same things, you certainly must have sexual chemistry—ya just do it. No promises that it’ll last forever, but what the hell lasts forever anyway?”

As always, Granny has a point. Nothing is permanent but that doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile. I’m far away from being ready to have kids and I hope I never reach the day where I settle but somewhere down the road I’ll probably bite the big one. At my bridal shower the only household products I will accept will be strictly for the bedroom.

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