Why women should be the ones running away from the bouquet

Guys Run Away From Wedding Bouquet

What happens when the groom throws the wedding bouquet 😂

Posted by Pretty 52 on Tuesday, September 4, 2018

This article seriously needs links to validate my various claims: I hope to add some shortly, perhaps over the Christmas break! I have put in bold font the thoughts which I would like to find links for..

Well just over a week ago I found this video on Facebook and I shared it on my own profile , because I thought it was funny. But then I sat and thought about it…

So basically it shows a groom throwing a wedding bouquet, and a bunch of men running away from it as fast as they can. This is the opposite of the behaviour of a bunch of single women who compete to run towards the bouquet and catch it, when it is thrown by the bride as it is done traditionally at weddings. The idea being that the woman who catches the bouquet will be the next to get married. So by implication when the men run away from the bouquet, the suggestion is that they are running away from the prospect of marriage.
This video of men running away from a bouquet ties in with cultural expectations, that somehow a man does not want to get married, that getting married is somehow against a man’s natural interests, that by proposing to a woman a man might be doing what the woman wants him to do, but he is somehow getting himself tied down, so of course any unmarried man in his right mind would run away from this.

This is a message that seems to be repeated endlessly in our culture, that a woman wants to get married, but it is in a man’s best interests to avoid marriage. I guess this is why it seems to provoke such a song and dance when a man can finally be persuaded to propose to a woman, and why so many women act as if they have caught some big prize just because they have managed to get someone to propose to them. This is the way marriage is promoted to women: that this is something you want, this is what will fulfil your life! Am I over-generalising with this?

And yet you know what? This is a lie from start to finish. Marriage is a big fat boon for men, not for women. I think that it is in the interests of men to act as if they are being reluctantly dragged into this, because if the truth were told, if women truly realised what they were signing up to, few women would want to embark on this – or women would suddenly become a lot more demanding. To be fair to men, I think that many of them sincerely believe that they are doing women a favour by committing to them; men have been conditioned as surely as women have been. I think that a wonderful marriage would definitely be a prize worth winning for myself, but the point is that it has to be a wonderful marriage. Marriage in and of itself is emphatically not a prize. Unless the marriage is to be wonderful, it is more likely to be a curse for a woman. This is the lie that society seems to tell us; that marriage is to be desired in and of itself.
I think that in marriage many women realise how they have been tricked, which is why women lead in the numbers of spouses initiating divorce.

So this then is why women should be the ones running away from the bouquet; when they look at that bouquet and have a reliable understanding of what marriage consistently represents for women:

Childbirth:
Even if your husband is truly amazing, who will be the one physically giving birth to the babies? Who will be the one going through the hell of childbirth?! Not him, for sure! (Do I need to find a link for that?!) I have never given birth to any children. However, each month without fail, my body acts as if it is trying to kill me just because it is preparing for a baby to potentially be conceived. Sometimes I am physically debilitated for three or four days. Each and every month – not even a full month, actually – 28 days. Man, forget childbirth, even “simple” menstruation is enough for me to insist on an outstanding husband. Otherwise I will look at him and think “I cannot be going through hell each month for the prospect of bringing a child into the world for this…person”. And it literally is like hell on earth. At the worst points it feels like pure liquid pain being pumped into my tummy. And then it happens all night so I can’t sleep, so the next morning I am shattered… Repeat three days in a row and I am practically crying with exhaustion mingled with physical pain. And you who have never even remotely experienced anything like this, you honestly think that you are the one entitled to be running away from the bouquet, doing me “the favour” of committing to me?! No baby! I’m the one bestowing all the favours here! I’m really not exaggerating here – please believe me! It might not be as bad as this for all women; I guess if another woman has it easier than this, then she can afford to be a little bit more lenient than I can! And childbirth is even worse, they say. Apparently childbirth is awful for everyone! – I mean every woman who gives birth. Once again – does this need a link?!

Housework:
Who is the one realistically going to be doing all the housework in the house – or at least most of it? Which spouse is consistently the one who does the majority of the housework? This is not a trick question. It has a very clear and obvious answer! Moreover, even with all the shouting about gender equality at work and at home, what percentage of men, I wonder, have sat down and seriously considered how they are going to be doing at least 50% of the chores, pulling at least 50% of the weight in their home? Once again, I don’t want to be unfair to men, this is probably not a male thing, more likely to be a human thing – but even when everyone is shouting about something, I bet most people still do not sit and think how the issue specifically relates to them – if gender equality is an issue in every heterosexual couple, then how might it be an issue in my home? How might I plan to mitigate the issue, so I don’t merely claim to be a feminist husband, but I actually am a feminist husband?! And I bet that for many husbands, even though the whole world is shouting about it, the whole issue still manages to take them by surprise, when it also predictably shows up in their own home.

Dear Mr Huggie-Wuggie, let me be clear with you. I am not going to be doing all the chores in our home. I am not even going to be doing the majority of chores in our home. At the very most, they are going to be split evenly. If you know that you are going to be too busy to pull your own weight, then you will use your money – not the communal family money but your specific money to hire someone to do it for you. And you know what, I am not even going to be arguing with you about this in our house. Rather I am going to make my views extremely clear before we get married, so that there is no possibility for confusion, no way of pleading ignorance. I know that there needs to be grace extended in this, but somehow I am sure I know which spouse tends to be the one always extending the grace… If you don’t like my sassy feminist attitude then I think the best thing for both of us is for you to simply marry someone else who is going to be more gracious and accommodating, you know, the kind of woman who will enthusiastically and obediently run towards the bouquet! (Disclaimer, at different weddings, I myself have caught the bouquet on at least two separate occasions!)

Childrearing
Similarly, which spouse consistently does most of the childcare? Which spouse consistently feeds the children? Changes the children? Bathes the children? Spends time looking after the children? Admittedly to a certain extent there is a practicality in this, of course in that women’s bodies are physically designed to feed babies, at least until those babies are weaned. After babies are weaned though, then Dad can do it just as well as Mum can! Furthermore – huge issue – which gender will then typically take time out of their career for a few years to look after the children?
Whose career, and pay prospects will typically take a humongous hit while she essentially works for free for a few years, to look after her family and her home? Who will typically face drastically reduced career prospects even when she returns to the workplace? Conversely, which spouse will typically find his career accelerating forward because it is enabled and empowered by someone at home taking care of his home needs so he can afford to concentrate on his career? Apparently all these things are statistically true.

Apparently the “gender pay gap” is hugely exacerbated by women taking time out of their careers to have babies and bring them up. And this follows women right into retirement. In short, to be perfectly candid it seems that through marriage, women are subsidising men and empowering their careers at the detriment of their own careers and long-term financial wellbeing. I think the gender pay gap would still definitely exist even if women did not take time out to have babies. But I believe that the reason that the gender pay gap remains so stubbornly large, in some years even growing, is because of women having babies and taking time out to look after them.

Even if a woman chooses to “go back to work”, who will be the one juggling childcare, and typically paying for childcare from her own meagre funds? Finding out that part-time roles, which are typically more “friendly” for working mothers also tend to consistently be paid less (because naturally Daddy cannot be expected to lessen his work hours to look after the children…not least because he tends to be paid more to start with…)

Candidly speaking, now I understand why so many women “clean out” their husbands if ever they get divorced, if they were “stay-at-home” mothers or housewives, and all the more so if they had to give up their own careers. I am not planning to do that. Above all, I am not planning to get divorced. But I am also not planning to take such a hit to my own career in the first place. No matter how much I love my husband, and I will, of course, I am definitely planning to maintain my own comfortable income.

I have planned for a long time to have my own career which I can do at home while looking after my own family. However even with that, I am not going to do all the childrearing – not even remotely – darling! And once again I am not going to argue with you. I am just going to leave you with the baby, and go off to my business networking meeting/ girls’ night out/family siblings holiday and forget I have children for that entire time. What’s this, you tried to call me?! Really?! Curious, I did not hear a thing!!! If you like, hire a babysitter with your money! As long as my baby is safe and happy in one piece when I get back, then that’s fine by me! And the likelihood is that there is going to be more than one child. Once again, please know yourself well enough before marriage to know that you will or will not like this, so that if you know you won’t like it, you can marry someone else!

Emotional Labour
Why do I do this to myself?! So I have already described how my body causes me so much pain during menstruation that it is almost as if it trying to kill me. Which would be somewhat counterproductive if it is preparing itself to be the host of a baby…. So guess when in my monthly cycle I decided to read a post about the one-sided emotional labour that women tend to do to keep families running smoothly?! Actually, it was probably more like a succession of posts. So I was in acute physical pain and I was also emotionally livid! And all of this work is real work. All of this work keeps families and societies ticking along. And none of it is paid or acknowledged but just expected. And usually taken for granted. Ladies, please make no mistake about it. The overwhelming likelihood is that you as the woman are the one going to be doing all the work in your marriage! Oh, he’s amazing is he?! You just wait! You’ll see what all our sisters and mothers have seen who have gone before us. Dear Mr Huggie-Wuggie, this is yet another thing I am not going to be doing all by myself. One year I’ll take Easter, and you will take Christmas, and then next year we’ll swap! And we’ll find a way of dividing the children’s birthdays between us. Yes, I have a natural aptitude for these things, so don’t worry I will remind you in plenty of time! And if one year we go without Christmas dinner, then so be it. Shrug. If we go without Christmas dinner for five years in a row, then again, so be it! “What, why is everyone looking at me? All of you children had better not come and look at me! You’d better go and look at your father as he is fiddling around with that barbecue, or whatever he is doing in that corner! Mummy is going to have a rest, on the sofa and you can call me when dinner is ready!” (“And we’d all prefer not to get gastro-enteritis this year, darling!” – Hopefully I will not need to tell my future husband this, because he will be an extremely proficient cook. But just in case…)

I am not saying that I want my husband to do everything. What I am saying is that I don’t want to be the one doing everything by default. And when these things are not discussed, then almost invariably long-suffering wives slide into these roles. I do not want this for my marriage. Which is why I am discussing them now, and planning to discuss them ad nauseam before marriage. And then within marriage itself, I sincerely am not going to argue. If I find myself at the point of needing to argue, then that in itself will tell me that I have failed in my marriage.

Submission
Ah, submission! How many times have I spoken about submission on this blog, I wonder?! The long and short of it is that women are commanded in the Bible to submit to their husbands in everything. Gulp. I think about this often, and I ask myself realistically speaking, how many women truly do submit to their husbands in everything? Secondly, what percentage of things do women typically submit to? I am quite quite sure that there are countless supposedly rock-solid Christian women out there, even women who I know, who will point-blank refuse to submit to their husbands on a wide number of issues, like for instance where to live, even things like the names of their children. All the same though, this is what the Bible says. There is no way I can envisage running towards the prospect of submission. There is no way I can even pretend to be excited about that prospect. Perhaps this is one thing where the reality will turn out to very different from the anticipation. Perhaps in reality it will all just click into place and make sense. And I was thinking that even though this is what the Bible says, this is not a thinking that is restricted to the Bible, or even “religion” or faith. I’m sure that in most heterosexual marriages, even those of “fervent” atheists, the man will somehow confidently expect to have the last word. The Bible “merely” codifies this expectation into holy Scripture.

So these are just a few easy and obvious reasons why women should be the ones running away from the wedding bouquet – because women are consistently, predictably the ones truly making sacrifices in marriage.

If we as women allow ourselves to buy into the lie that the man is somehow doing us a favour by committing to us, then perhaps we might give him more of a free pass on things like housework and childrearing – if he is doing me such a huge favour by committing to me, then perhaps it is the least I could do, to do all the housework and look after the kids. Furthermore, he automatically has all the power in the relationship, because I have given it to him, and by my attitude I am practically begging him to stay and to stay committed! However, when I realise that I too am bringing a lot to the table, whether or not it is publicly acknowledged or valued, then suddenly the power balance is not so one-sided.

For this to be true of most women, that we sincerely feel powerful in our relationships, we have to sincerely not need men’s commitment so much. Perhaps what we as women need to do is sit down and coolly itemise the ways in which we need men, or we feel that we need men, and think of ways we could manage without them. Men are always claiming or telling us that they are more “rational”* – well for once let’s beat them at their own game. For instance a big issue is the issue of money. Well if we women work to be self-sufficient then that is one way in which we won’t need men and their money. When you have worked through all the issues, then when a man comes you can look at him and think: “You know what? There’s nothing you have that I need so desperately.” Even with all that I still do need a man. However only a man who is going to be outstandingly excellent is going to be good enough. So when Mr Mediocre comes and acts like he is doing you some unspeakable favour by even the thought of thrusting a ring in your face, you can tell him:
“You can keep your commitment! I won’t be needing anything from you!” Or when he turns out to be totally unbearable in marriage, you can tell him: “You know what? I’ll manage by myself from henceforth, at least until you straighten yourself out. See ya!” No-one ever wants to be in a position to say that in their marriage. But let’s be candid, sometimes it is necessary.

This is the only way I can think of that marriage confers a true advantage upon women: when you compare it to being in a relationship but not being married. So to be honest, it is arguably in a woman’s best and most selfish interests not to be in a relationship at all, but if you are going to be in a relationship at all, then of course you should insist that he has to marry you! Considering all that a relationship signifies for a woman then committing to you is the least he could do. So you are going to be screaming as you give birth to his baby, as your body feels as if it is breaking in two, potentially risking your life, and even with that he cannot even have the decency to commit to you?! Of course you should not sleep with a man who refuses to commit to you, and until he has married you! If he starts talking or whatever and trying to construe any “clever” argument, just ditch him. Seriously. Ladies, it is time that we knew our worth – seriously!!! I don’t need that nonsense in my life – and neither do you! However with the majority of men, the best thing you can do for yourself is not to insist that they should marry you, but rather reject the idea of a relationship with them altogether. That might not seem very generous to men, but most men do not have outstanding character. Is that a radical claim? Neither do most women, admittedly. However, considering that women are the ones who overwhelmingly make sacrifices in marriage, I think that it is women who truly stand to lose out in marriage, and that is why women have to be more demanding, no matter how men may act as if they are doing us a favour.

And whenever someone throws a bouquet high in the air and expects me to run towards it, until I have met that extremely rare man who is truly worth catching a bouquet for, I will just watch that thing as it sails through the air, and quietly think to myself: “You cannot even be serious!”

*This is a humongous, demonstrable lie if ever there was one – which gender consistently, predictably causes most drunken fights on Saturday nights?! Which gender is vastly overrepresented in different prisons in every single country in the world (that has prisons)?! Disclaimer, I have not actually checked out this “fact”, but somehow I am very confident it is true without even needing to check it out! Which gender is overwhelmingly responsible for all the crime and murder in the world – so much so that it is not even comparable, so much for their supposedly superior “rationality”?! Actually, I have thought about this a lot. Men are universally more powerful than women and always have been, both in terms of physical strength and economic power. Regardless of the truth, by my observation, people who are more powerful always claim to be “more rational” than people who are less powerful, because being rational and thinking, logical makes them more human and less animal, impulsive and instinctive where thinking is what distinguishes human beings from animals. Perhaps in their mind their superior “rationality” justifies or validates their superior power. And yet with men and women this is demonstrably, ridiculously and manifestly untrue. And has clearly been untrue throughout the existence of humanity. And yet men continue to say this, endlessly. Women are not even more “emotional” than men. We might cry more, admittedly, (anecdotally,) but when you consider negative destructive emotions like anger, frustration, vengeance, taken to extremes, then once again, men appear to safely “win”, and this is so self-evident that once again I feel I don’t need a link to “prove” this!

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