Bigamist caught out on Facebook

Sydney Herald News: [source] She had been married for less than a month when a shock discovery – that her husband already had a wife – brought their honeymoon phase to an abrupt end. There on Facebook was photographic proof: wedding pictures of her husband with his other bride. [snip]

Ms Hiu confronted her husband, who confessed that during the trip he had married his former girlfriend in Hong Kong. The marriage was arranged by their parents, he said, and he felt pressured to follow their wishes.

Leaving aside the fairly obvious comment that, if you’re going to do something stupid or illegal, don’t post pictures of it on Facebook,  you’d be surprised how many people agree to utterly ridiculous plans because they’re feeling pressured to follow the wishes of their parents or peers.

Reality check! Your wedding day is a time to be your most true self, so don’t go agreeing to things ‘just to keep the peace’. That’s how this guy ended up with two wives – and ultimately, in trying to please his family has brought them great dishonour.

So far, with literally hundreds of weddings under my belt, I’ve never yet had a groom left standing at the altar. There have however, been one or two weddings called off after the invitations had been sent out. [And one painfully memorable case of having second thoughts too late –  as in, at the wedding reception…!] The common thread seems to have been that, for various reasons, the couple felt that they should get married, that it was the right thing to do. Which is as clear of a recipe for disaster as anything I’ve ever seen.

The truth is, if you’re not ready to get married, you’re just not ready. And it makes no difference whether he’s the father of your four children, or her name is on the documents for your house and car – unless you are both convinced that you should tie the knot… then you probably shouldn’t.

To a lesser degree the same rule applies for the smaller details that go into planning your wedding. Some things you will just have to compromise on, or nothing would ever get done. But make sure that in the give and take of your wedding planning, you’re not giving way too far. If you have no strong feelings about religion, but the MIL-to-be wants a prayer said, I’d say, let her have it. But if you feel that religion is a blight on society..rant rant… then it has absolutely no place in your wedding ceremony, and the sooner your new mother-in-law comes to terms with that, the better.

I’m not saying that you get to be totally selfish about how your wedding goes – if you really, really don’t plan on taking anyone else’s wishes into account, then you’re better off eloping – but, if plans are being made that you’re feeling uncomfortable about, speak up! Speaking the truth with kindness and care is good practice for having a healthy long-term relationship, whether that’s with your new in-laws, or your new spouse.

And, it’s probably worth pointing out how common it is for one [or both]  of the couple to hit a patch of doubt in the weeks leading up to the wedding. It’s important to figure out whether the doubt is about the wedding or the marriage.

There’s a world of difference between having ‘cold feet’ and realising that this is not the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. And, in my experience, that’s how you tell the difference – if you’re freaking out about getting married, and the person you’re turning to for comfort is also the person you’re planning to marry, you’re almost certainly good to go!

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Stephanie Silberstein
    Sep 23, 2010 @ 01:49:43

    Great post. I tweeted it because I think the message is one everyone needs to hear. I have lots of LGBTQ friends, some of whom are afraid to come out because they are worried about what other people will think. Straight, gay, born female, born male, whatever…we ALL need to be ourselves, and starting off the marriage with a mask on is a recipe for serious trouble.

    Reply

    • weddingwhisperer
      Sep 23, 2010 @ 01:59:10

      Indeed- so often a well-meaning attempt to avoid pain or censure in the short term just creates so much more pain and heartache further down the line. Give me a painful truth over a well-intentioned lie, any day!

      Reply

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