Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Marriage: One Big Publicity Stunt?

On August 20, I had the honor of coordinating a wedding for my friend and former co-worker Kim, who married her high school sweetheart of 12 years in a beautiful and heartfelt ceremony.

You may recall that the very same day, another woman named Kim was also busy tying the knot – this one much more famous but apparently not nearly as sincere in her love for and commitment to her partner. As you can imagine, I’m dumbfounded along with everyone else to hear that Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries have called it quits after just 72 days of marriage. But am I honestly all that surprised? Sadly, no, and here’s why. 

First of all, even from the very beginning, it seemed obvious to me that the wedding and marriage were nothing more than publicity stunts designed to generate media interest and rake in piles of cash. But even if they weren't, the alternative really isn’t much better in my eyes. After all, marrying someone you met less than a year earlier and then divorcing because marriage “wasn’t what you thought it would be,” flies in the face of everything this type of commitment stands for – a lifelong partnership that will at times require a great deal of hard work, sacrifice and support.  

Image Source: People

Of course, Kim’s not the first to cash in on wedding-related publicity or to divorce so quickly, and it makes me sad and angry to know that there are so many people, celebrity or not, who obviously consider their wedding vows to be nothing more than empty words. Whatever happened to the sacredness of pledges to love one another “in good times and in bad, all the days of our lives”? Are these merely symbolic statements? Do couples still consider the true meaning behind what they are about to say and do before standing up in front of family members, friends, TV audiences and the world to make such intimate promises?

In the end, while I certainly do believe that there are legitimate reasons for divorce, including such horrible acts as infidelity and abuse, I also believe that we as a society have too often come to view weddings as nothing more than heavily staged parties. Furthermore, with so many divorces and splits, it saddens me to think that there are many loving and committed gay and lesbian couples who would faithfully honor their vows and take them seriously, but who aren’t given the chance, because somehow, couples like Kim and Kris have more of a right to marriage in our society.

What do you think? Do people like Kim and Kris make a mockery of marriage, and what does this say about our cultural attitudes?  

14 comments:

  1. i read an article where kim spoke up about the wedding and said that when she was planning it, she wanted to not get married afterall, but was scared she'd let so many friends/family down. i think that happens a lot when people get married. they get so caught up in the wedding hoopla that they forget about the one thing that ties it all together: the relationship.

    i do agree that many celebrities make a mockery of marriage, though i do believe that many legitimately try (eva longoria/tony parker, jessica simpson/nick lachey, etc) but because of being in the public eye and being apart a lot, they grow apart as a couple. being in a marriage takes constant work and takes a constant effort to continue growing together, and i feel as though many celebrities don't work as hard as they should.

    as for marriage in general, i feel as though many many many people are too quick to throw out the "D" word when something doesn't go exactly as planned or as they like. no one wants to try to fix things anymore, they just want a quick fix instead of something that may take time.

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  2. I think cold feet are a very common issue in marriages. A lot of people are so excited about the wedding itself that they don't take the time to think about the fact that it's supposed to be forever, which can be very scary. I think it was just the fear of a whole life change that got the best of them. And when you get married so quickly, it's easy to overlook a lot of the emotional commitment. I don't know if it was a publicity stunt; I think it was just a poorly thought-out decision. So lame that they didn't even last 3 months, though... good grief!

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  3. I agree with P above. Not sure if it was a publicity stunt but it was definitely a poorly thought-out decision. They never should have gotten married.

    The first thought that came to mind when I heard the news was how disgusted I was that celebrities can treat marriage like a joke, but loving, committed LGBT couples can't get married. It's really sad.

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  4. I wonder if this break up is a pr stunt as well.. i guess we'll never know, and sadly, she will be judged for her lack of thought throughout this whole process. Not sure if she was ready for X husband #2 already, but hopefully she's learned her lesson!

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  5. I have really mixed feelings about the Kim/Kris marriage. I think it's easy to look at how quickly they got divorced and assume they are making a mockery of marriage. I'll admit that this was my gut reaction too. But then I had to sit back and ask myself if even someone as famous as Kim K. is "OK" with having two divorces under her belt at the age of 31. Personally, I would be devastated. At the end of the day, I don't know what her feelings are on marriage, or what they were for Kris, but I watched their wedding special and hoped they would work out. 72 days is such a short amount of time, it looks on the outside like they just "gave up." But unless we are them, we'll never really know. If this was a PR stunt, it's disgusting and unfair to those that can't legally marry. If not, it's just really tragic that they weren't willing to try and stick it out for a bit longer.

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  6. VERY well put! I was so shocked to hear they are giving up ALREADY. Obviously her love for him was not what it should have been since it wasn't worth trying for!

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  7. This upset me so much yesterday but I think someone said it on my blog so well...the individuals that continue to buy her stuff and pay her attention give her permission to act like the way she does including making a mockery of marriage as a sacred institution!

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  8. It is very sad how people jump in and out of marriage so quickly without even a try. It is a commitment you make in front of God and you just give up so quickly and easily. I am just glad there were no children involved.

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  9. I thought it was a publicity stunt when they got engaged.
    I thought it was a publicity stunt when they did the reality show.
    I thought it was a publicity stunt when they got married and aired the wedding on TV.
    I think it is a publicity stunt while they divorce.

    http://www.glamkittenslitterbox.com/
    Twitter: @GlamKitten88

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  10. i'm upset about the spectacle and the press the wedding received. all of the hoopla involved seemed too much and marriage was not thought about. it's just a sad thing all around.

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  11. Commitment and honesty were definitely not on the guest list at that wedding.

    I am just amazed about what people would do for being "popular aka famous".

    People like these give real feelings a bad name, sucks!

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  12. she reminds me of j-lo...just in love with love. marriage is something that i take very personally--everyone in my fam has been married at least 3 times. my grandfather had at least 8 wives. my sis is on her 2nd divorce in 5 years. i refuse to get divorced (unless in physical/mental harm, but i think i'd know that beforehand). i've never been married though. and it crushes me the ppl i know in committed relationships who can't get married.

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  13. I've always been a huge KK fan, but I'll admit, when the news broke I was surprised by how irritated I felt about it. 72 days - c'mon! They must have known it wasn't right then, so why go through with it? Marriage is so special - if you have doubts you can't just keep your fingers crossed and hope. They must have been having issues then so should have made more of an effort to work them out. Ever since the wedding she's been all over the world working, and he didn't even know she was planning a divorce - how stink!
    I just think it's unfair that any old heterosexual couple can get married without truly, deeply meaning it but LGBT's who have been together for years, and truly do love and want to commit to each other can't! Where is the sense in that!?

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  14. Very well put. I wasn't too shocked about this at all - if you ever watched the Kardashians it was obvious she was in it for one reason... the family wasnt even very fond of him. I just think it is ridiculous. E has been playing the wedding constantly which is a slap in the face but they are probably very frustrated how much they paid her to put it on tv. xo

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