A is 31 and lives on the East Coast.
Why did you decide to get married?
I felt that it was right from the minute I met my husband. I felt so connected and that we just got each other right away. I got married because I wanted to build a life together and have children. I guess I was affected by my upbringing (as much as I hate to admit it sometimes). I think G and I both were. I always believed in a somewhat traditional view of marriage and family (although I am somewhat untraditional in other ways). I felt excited and proud to call G my husband. It’s the feeling of being totally committed to one another and feeling like we took the next step in our relationship.
What did you think marriage would be like?
I knew that it would be wonderful living together, and that it would mean compromises on both our ends. I thought it would be a progression from our relationship and not be that different aside from the fact that we would be living together.
Where do you think you got your ideas/concept/narrative about marriage?
I definitely got the ideas I had about marriage from my mom. She has very magical views on marriage (ex. you never fight and hurt each other’s feelings) and that has tripped me up at times. Unrealistic expectations about marriage have at times led to pitfalls.
What are your feelings on the word “wife”?
I think that I like the term, it doesn’t make me feel like G OWNS me, like many might feel. I like equally saying my husband.
Why did you make the decision you made about your name?
I hyphenated my last name because I felt I really wanted to take my husband’s name, but also wanted to keep my last name for business purposes. I wanted to maintain my previous identity and take on a new status at the same time.
Do you think your relationship with your partner has changed since you got married?
I think definitely living together was not completely what I expected it to be. I don’t think our relationship has changed per se, I just think it can present some challenges at times since you are living together and seeing the person on a daily basis.
What have you learned about yourself since you’ve been married?
I really need to think about the other person’s needs sometimes over my own, and that it’s not only about what I want. Also, that it can be a wonderful feeling to depend on someone else and have them depend on you.