Why the British Don’t Get Married (no cash for the bash)

70 % of Britons between the ages of 20 and 35 want to get married, and for 25% of those people, the only thing stopping them is finances (Ipsos MORI/Times).  A wedding is just too expensive these days.  The problem seems to be what the day now demands- at minimum, a big white dress, flowers, a venue, a cake, invitations, bridesmaids, champagne, suits for the ushers, a photographer, a band, some rings, a honeymoon…No wonder it stands as a huge obstacle between singleness and the state of matrimony.

I remember very well the feeling of hopelessness as I sat with my parents listing the costs involved in putting on my wedding.  Shawn and I were both students.  His mother was on welfare, my parents are missionaries.  There were few resources to put to the project, but undeterred we set the date and forged ahead.  What followed was a miracle.  Actually a series of miracles, beginning with the heart-stoppingly generous offer of some family friends to buy and cook a meal for our guests.

I know that many people don’t have angels like this in their lives, but I can’t help feeling it is all wrong to hold off marriage until an extravagant party can be held.  I have been to a few weddings done on a tight budget, and they were without exception beautiful and momentous occasions.  Maybe we need to rethink what is really “needed” for this all important day, and then get on with the life-long business of being married.