Friday, February 17, 2017

It's My Wedding And I'll Elope If I Want To

Wouldn't be the first bride and groom I'd have heard it from actually. Though the feeling doesn't come as naturally to me since I've always adored weddings, I can somewhat understand the preposterous urge to flee the annoyingly rigid ceremony of marriage. At least for some.

These days, I think almost everyone I know would have been involved in just such a conversation.

Bride : Gosh, it's just such a bother. I think I'll just have a destination wedding far, far away.
Groom : Yeah, a small wedding is what I'd want. 
Paul : And your parents are alright with that? You're both having the first weddings in your families right? 
Bride : Oh they don't really have say in it. 
Groom : Yeah, but why should that matter? It's our wedding.
Paul : Yeah kids, I have to correct you both there. 

No, it's not.

Perhaps I'm the only old-fashioned fuddy-duddy left around but there actually are times when you have to think less of yourself. Unlike modern Western-influenced values where there's an overemphasis on me-me-me individualism rather than the collective, I gotta say this. It's not just you. Yes, you're the ones getting married but there are certain social and familial obligations that you cannot simply dismiss.

And this I learned while observing my brother's own wedding so many years back - and several friends' weddings thereafter. Time and again I've seen folks get married with little or simply no contribution from the parents - in fact it's sometimes belligerently unwelcome.

Come on, unfilial much?

Yes, no doubt the doting mom and pop would agree it's perfectly alright to have a small wedding with a precious handful of your guests. Go ahead and fly off to some uninhabited little island miles away from anyone. Beloved child after all and they would be ecstatically happy regardless. Never you worry your lil head about their own unwieldy list of friends, they'll just cancel whatever hypothetical preparations they have been making for the past two to three decades.

Babe, remember your dream of a small intimate wedding party? Yeah, that's gonna remain just a dream. 

Don't kid yourself, they have always been planning your wedding regardless of what they've been telling you. With every random wedding dinner they are forced to attend, they've been chalking up their own obligatory guests with red packets to pay.

And then there are the close friends who tend to meander off along the way.

After all, there'll always be that sudden impromptu weekend barbecue your parents would be able to arm-twist force their friends from way back in high school to attend. Perhaps even that long-ago childhood best friend who moved to Iceland several decades back. Maybe he'd enjoy just flying several thousand miles over to have that roasted chicken wing.


Really. It is your wedding. But is it so hard to share that little piece with your parents?

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