Friday, January 29, 2016

Why Not Marry Yourself?

I first wrote about this in 2012. You would think that that would have been enough time for the nation and its psycho professionals to get it out of their minds. But, alas, it is continuing, and it is even becoming something of a trend.

I am talking about self-marriage. Yes, indeed. If you are having trouble finding a suitable mate, if dating has not been going very well, if you are tired of the bar scene, the club scene and the hookup scene… well, you can solve your problems by marrying yourself. Invite all your friends and family and plight your troth to yourself.

How come no one thought of that before? Why haven’t people been willing to declare to the world how much they love themselves? I do not need to explain how you consummate your self-marriage, but you can guess.

According to self-marriage is a way of boosting or affirming your self-love. As though it needs boosting or affirming. No one else might like you, but you like you. No one else might love you, but you love you. No one else might want to sleep with you, but you are happy to shoulder the burden, night after night… you never fail to be there for you.

Think of the advantages. You do not need to worry about changing your name. Some of self-marriage’s proponents argue that you do not have to have sex with the same person all the time. Pardon me for raising the question, but if you have sex with yourself—Woody Allen once called it sex with someone you love—aren’t you having sex with the same body every time? If you hook up with someone at a club, aren’t you therefore cheating on yourself? Console yourself with the thought that once you marry yourself you will not be arguing about who is doing which chores.

Of course, when check in to a hotel should you say that you are one or two? Do you file your taxes as single or married? What if you want to go out but your self wants to stay home?

Proponents of self-marriage say that it’s better than being alone. To make it seem slightly less ridiculous, they say that when you marry yourself you are telling the world that you like your own company. Perfectly independent and autonomous—isn’t that what everyone wants?-- you will not be desperate to find someone to fill the gap in your life.

Proponents also say that it relieves the pressure to find the One, because you are the One. Now when you don’t have a date for Saturday night you really do have a date with yourself. You can pig out on chicken wings and chips and no one will be the wiser. Perfect self-indulgence one might call it.

Then again, what happens when you start talking to yourself? Is it a real conversation or an ersatz psychotic breakdown? We know that in psychiatry talking to yourself is not a very good sign.

But, when you marry yourself, can you still date? Proponents of self-marriage will say that they do not cheat on themselves when they have sex with someone else because they have an open relationship. They have agreed with themselves that extramarital affairs will be fine. Some might call it polygamy.

But, won’t your auxiliary spouses be jealous of your extraordinary love for yourself. And if you are completely self-sufficient and do not need anyone for anything, what is their role? Are they just extra baggage, to be used for subsidiary needs and then tossed aside in favor of the one true love that will never leave you: your Self.

But then again, how can you want yourself, how can you yearn for yourself, how can you desire yourself when there is no way of putting any distance between you and yourself? If absence makes the heart grow fonder, or some such thing, and if absence is the basis for desire—you cannot desire something you already have—it makes no sense to say that you desire yourself, that you will need to seduce yourself, that you will need to charm yourself.

If you are a woman and can figure out parthenogenesis, you can even have children. As for divorce, some believe that the only way you can dissolve this marriage by yourself is by committing suicide.

If you read some of the articles on this strange custom you will discover that its leading practitioners seem all to be women. It’s hard to believe that women are more full of themselves than men, but such seems to be the case. Perhaps, it comes from feminist ideology and the therapy culture. The self-married few see self-marriage as a way to escape patriarchal oppression and commitments to other people.

If we had read this in The Onion, it would be good for a few laughs. Just because we read it on does not make it less satirical. Some people seem to want to make themselves a living, breathing reductio ad absurdum of one of the main trends in philosophy and psychology: the glorification of the Self, the obsession with Self, the adoration of Self, the veneration of the Self. How much psychotherapy is devoted to healing the Self, to repairing the Self? Wouldn’t self-marriage be the logical goal of this process?

Of course, the mini-minds of the therapy world will tell you that once you commit yourself to self-love and find a good, clean, healthy self-love you will project your inner radiance and self-confidence. Others will immediately be attracted to you, because nothing is quite so attractive as someone who is full of hiimself. Thus self-love by the theory will naturally lead to fulfilling love with another person.

For those who like their theories pure and who refuse to adulterate their serious thinking with any objective facts or realities, self-marriage is clearly the way to go. For my part I liked it better when pride was a sin.


Ares Olympus said...

Vice: Sasha Cagen is a life coach who offers lessons on how to embrace what she calls the "quirkyalone" lifestyle: a way of being for those who find themselves terminally single and just want to appreciate being alone until something perfect comes along romantically, if ever. Cagen is an advocate of the self-wedding, which she views as a much-needed coming-of-age ritual that functions like a bat mitzvah or a quinceaƱera. She wrote a book about when self-weddings first started happening in northern California ten years ago, and she now runs a business off of the ritual. Plenty of women have gotten self-married directly as a result of her ideas and direction.

Self-marriage seems harmless, but somewhat pitiable. Why not just have an "old maid" celebration to challenge fate?

Sasha Cagen is apparently a real person, although Wikipedia calls her a writer, editor, and entrepreneur, not a life coach.

I do recall Catholic Nuns considered themselves a "Bride of Christ". Let's see:
No, nuns are not actually married to Jesus. It's a form of figurative speech to say nuns are the spouses of Christ.

In reality, as members of the Church, the Bride of Christ, we are all called to be "spouses" of Christ. Now since religious have taken vows not to marry a human spouse so that they may focus on Lord, they are an external witness to that unity with Christ to which we are all called. Their celibacy enables them to "thinketh on the things of the Lord" (1 Cor. 7:34) and is an encouragement and example to us non-religious of the detachment we should have from creatures and the attachment of love we should have for Christ.

"In the consecrated life particular importance attaches to the spousal meaning, which recalls the Church's duty to be completely and exclusively devoted to her Spouse, from whom she receives every good thing. This spousal dimension, which is part of all consecrated life, has a particular meaning for women, who find therein their feminine identity and as it were discover the special genius of their relationship with the Lord." (Vita Consecrata, no. 34)

To sum up, the religious more perfectly lives the spousal relationship with Jesus to which we are all called as members of the Church, the Bride of Christ. Nevertheless, the terms marriage, spouse, spousal, etc. are only symbolic terms used to describe spiritual realities.

Yes, becoming a nun would surely be a higher status choice if you're at all religious.

Anonymous said...

Don't expect any wedding presents from me.

Sam L. said...

The divorce bill will be twice as much, because there's income tax on alimony, and the bitterness involved...will be U G L Y!!

Anonymous said...

I hate myself. A marriage is a non-starter.

I'll divorce my husband and marry Ares.

Maybe the great sex will shut him up. -$$$

priss rules said...

Speaking of self-love...


I never laughed so hard. This is turning into a nation of tards across the entire spectrum. No more need for reasoned debate. Just stare into the camera and strut your stuff.

priss rules said...

Marrying oneself would be interesting among those with split-personality disorder.

priss rules said...

What if you're a man.. and pledge to marry yourself as woman?

As a man, you ask your woman-yet-to-be 'will you marry me?'

and then you get a 'sex change', and as a 'woman', you say, 'yes, I will marry you.'

I suppose that would be a one-person hetero marriage.