Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Attack of the smug married couples...

For the record, I have nothing against marriage. I'd like for David and I to get married at some point. Preferably when it won't cause family arguments, unnecessary stress and cost a bajillion £'s.  Ok, I know it doesn't have to cost a lot of money really, but whatever money it does cost us, I can't help but think of better ways to spend that money. I have nothing against married couples in general either. There are however a certain type of married couple I do take issue with. I like to call them the "SMUG marrieds".

This particular breed really make me all kinds of batshit mental. I know this is a bit of a generalisation, but newly married couples are usually the worst. For some inexplicable reason they think that being married for 6 months or even a year or two suddenly makes them fucking relationship experts. As if their relationship is more secure, more loving and just a million miles better than any of those poor unfortunate unwed people like myself & my partner.

I cannot begin to explain my blood vessel busting fury when a "smug married" attempts to give me a relationship pep talk. I have been with my partner for 11 years. Most of these smug marrieds TOTAL relationship time is generally less than 5 years - including their marriage.

I think in order to illustrate fully the extent of this eye ball poppingly irritating smugness I'll have to give you some examples.

Being introduced to a couple of smug marrieds for the first time

"Hi, I'm Bob. This is my wife Linda."

Then Linda says (grinning uncontrollably and simultaneously waving her ring finger at me as if I asked to see it - I DIDN'T),

"We just got married in July. I can't believe we've been married 6 MONTHS* already!!!"

*The capitals here indicate where Linda raised her voice to about 10 million decibels, just to make sure me and everyone else in the entire universe heard her.

After giving us a minute to offer our enthusiastic congratulations while they bask in their smugness & grin inanely, she then asks,

"So how long have you two been together?"

I tell her 11 years.

"Oh my goodness! That is AMAZING! Did you do something fabulous on your wedding anniversary."

I then explain that we are not in fact married. A looong moment of silence. Linda and Bob cast each other a knowing, pitying look. Turning back towards us with saddened expressions and a concerned tilt of the head Linda says,

"Ohhhh...well...Not that you NEED to be married these days of course. I mean, don't you want to get married though? I just feel it has taken our relationship to a whole new level. It has REALLY changed our relationship in so may ways."

Bob watches on, nodding diplomatically along with his wife's helpful little pep talk. As is my way, I smile politely as I manoeuvre myself and David away from these wretched idiots. As we walk away I see them watching us with that pitying yet smug half smile, then turn to each other once more with that knowing look. I'm fairly certain the palms of my hands are bleeding from all the fist clenching I was doing during that conversation.

So there you have it, it nearly always runs along similar lines. Some are more smug, more pitying, or maybe just bemused by us. God forbid you get stuck with a group of smug marrieds. Then you are really in for a treat. They pick at you like vultures picking at an animal carcass. Then you have the joy of not only listening to multiple pep talks, and the questions about why you aren't married. You get the little digs, the pokes. That hit you squarely between the ribs.

"Ohhh you'll KNOW all about it when you're married..."

We get this one A LOT! Know what exactly? Is it some kind of exclusive club? Is there a secret handshake? A loyalty card? An executive lounge? Do we get a free unicorn? What exactly will I know about my OH or relationships after marriage that I didn't find out by being in a committed relationship for 11 years? Is it some kind of fast track pass like at theme parks? Does it automatically make a shorter relationship more valid or real than a longer one? Simply by the exchanging of rings? What is this, a fucking fairy story?

"Now we are married Bob helps with all the housework!" *proudface*

What? Are you serious? You had to put a ring on his finger to make your partner pull his weight? I'm sorry, we've always had a relationship of equals without the aid of a piece of paper and a slap up meal for 500 after the fact.

I could go on, but I am sure by now you get the picture. Please don't get me wrong. I do not begrudge these people their happiness, or their pride. Being a newlywed is most likey a very exciting thing, to be enjoyed and savoured. If they are happy, then I am happy for them. There is absolutely nothing wrong in declaring your love for another human being. It is a wonderful idea. That said however, just because a couple have not done the same, it does not make their relationship any less secure, special or valid than anyone else's. Neither does having a longer relationship than someone else. I may have mentioned my 11 year relationship here, but I certainly wouldn't use my relationship status to belittle other couples who hadn't been together for as long.

So if you are married, I wish you a long, happy and healthy relationship. And if you are not married, I wish you a long, happy and healthy relationship! Just keep your bloody smug comments to yourself! OKAY?!?


Karen Marquick said...

Hehe I'm married *ducks for cover* but found this post so funny because I am certain there are married couples out there like that. I'm not one of them. Marriage is no different bar an expensive meal out, a faff changing my name, and bank cards and driving licence and bills and passport and everything that has my name on....and even my signature. We wanted children together and I wanted to share their name and the name I had before was my previous married name so one way or another I would have had to change to either my maiden name or marry my partner and change directly to his name. Obviously I married him because I love him, but it didnt change our relationship . Great post xx

Marilynn said...

Don't worry you safe!Glad to hear there are some lovely married people out there! I knew there were, it just seems I always meet the smug ones! Thanks for reading, glad you enjoyed it! ;-)

Karen Marquick said...

I did...and shall be following your lovely blog from now on.....*copies and pastes to blog follow list*

Victoriaaa said...

Me and my OH have been together 5 years and are engaged, yet in no rush to get married, though we will one day. We don't argue and people are always saying 'ooh but that will all change when your married' .. Hmm please, explain how a piece of paper will suddenly change things? Great post!!

Mummy Barrow said...

In my experience I have found that those that shout loudest about their fabulous happy marriages are the ones that are actually not that happy at all.

I am lucky that Mr B and I are married but when we got our joint mortgage a year before we got engaged THAT was a bigger commitment than a ring and a piece of paper.

Dont get me wrong, I love being married, but I think there are more important things in the world.

Anonymous said...

Lol, Smug Marrieds are the worst. The first two years of our marriage were awful, I was studying all hours and working as a full time nurse, my husband was also studying, we barely saw each other, we were broke, we fought a lot. Hardly smug material. I agree with MummyBarrow. If you have to tell everyone how wonderful being married is and shove it down throats, it's probably not as good as you are pretending it is. Any relationship takes work. A ring and a piece of paper aren't a magical thing!

Anonymous said...

Fabulous post, and so true!! I know a couple who have been together for, ooh, let me think now, 25 years and ARE NOT MARRIED!!! They're happy as pigs in muck.

On the other end of the scale, my ex-husband (who's also my best friend, don't ask) has a brother who was married for 25 years and his wife was just like Linda - in fact, I think she IS Linda! Twenty-five years into their marriage, after she declares 'we never argue', he buggers off with another woman! You can't make it up can you?!!

CJ x

notmyyearoff said...

Haha smug marrieds are funny to watch - as if the ring on their finger made them all suddenly wise and promoted somehow!

Sonya Cisco said...

I am a smug double divorcee who will live happily in sin from now on thanks very much! :) I had to go to a party with some of these types this week, bored me shitless with all their talk of loft extensions and 'forever homes'

DULL! Unlike your post, which is AWESOME! Xx

Anonymous said...

Great blog! I have also witnessed so many couples that lay on the public displays of affection, pet-names end up in divorce-city. I already have it all figured out. It is also comical when I am around my married friends when they all try to out-do each other with their lovey-doveyness yet when I get them separately and since I am no competition (single/childless etc), the truth comes out. I just sit back and observe and inwardly find some solace in knowing that even the couples are in competition since as a single, we get left out of a lot of stuff with the 'perfect married couples'.

Jenny Ripatti-Taylor said...

Haha Lynn this is brilliant. I am married *don't hit me haha BUT I am not in the smug club in fact I get the smug people in my face about something or another too. I think weddings do waste money on things we could have used to take a family trip or spend on the house etc. In my case it was get married or I get deported from the UK as I am an American. I am not sure if we would be married if both from the same country. I hate those that squeal and scream in others faces too. A piece a paper means nothing. Ok I do believe vows mean something but you can vow to love and cherish your other half from your personal toilet. lol When we first got married I got the married couples saying we don't even know what it's like because we have been only married for a year, then we got the smug couples that said oh we don't know what it's like until we have a child. it even kept going further as to say my smug SIL says I wouldn't know what it's like because I didn't have two kids. Never ending. So I am married, have two kids and I still don't know what it's all about. What is "IT" anyway right? I loved your post. Had my nodding and laughing along. We can kick all those smugs together. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me linky. I enjoyed getting introduced to your lovely blog and reading this. #sharewithme

Anonymous said...

Great post - I'm a delightfully unmarried co-habiting woman with three children and a relationship of 22 years. No signs of a divorce here.

Emma Kershaw said...

Great post! I'm married but I also hate the 'smug marrieds' or just people who generally go on and on about how perfect, wonderful and amazing their life, husband, child is! Let's be real, nobody life is that perfect lol #sharewithme

Jo Nicholson said...

Great post. We were together 12 years before we got engaged and 14 before we got married. We had so many of our friends marry after being with someone a couple of years and suddenly their relationship was so much more valid than ours, drove me potty!
We did get married, did it change our relationship? Not at all, it's exactly the same as it was before! x

mel @mydaysni said...

I admit, as a married woman, I do like to ask my friends that are in committed relationships when they are going to tie the knot. The reason I do this can be summarised in this old saying - misery loves company - lol I'm only joking (kinda!)

Jo Smith said...

I remember when people were asking if 'married life' was what I hoped, after I'd been married for about 4-6 months. I never knew how to answer! What kind of question is that?!
I'd end up saying - about the same, just a bit more skint!

I've popped on over from #sharewithme and would love you to come say hi at too :-) xx

Anonymous said...

I also wanted to get married mostly so I would share surnames with my children. Now I'm wondering why I didn't just change my name by deed poll...would have been a lot simpler eh?! :-)

Tanya Leary said...

Shit- where do you queue for the unicorn, ours hasn't come through yet??
Fab post. I totally agree and am pretty sure I've never done any of these things...I hope.

Colette B said...

I've been with my husband for 12 years (bar a brief split in our 20s) and we've been married for 2 years - I was desperate to marry him but totally get that it's personal choice. I would never judge someone else's decisions!

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