I had suddenly become the punch line at the wedding rehearsal, flanked by my girlfriend’s mother, sister, grandmother and extended family and friends. The hilariously extroverted and, up-until-that-moment earlier, endearingly charismatic wedding planner had turned on me. He’d just asked me if my girlfriend and I were married and how long we’d been together, to which I’d told him “no” and “almost three years.” And then came his ever-predictable response.
A question came into my head: Get what together? Conform and become another mindless robot just doing “what people do”? Does “getting it together” mean hitting the two-year mark, taking two months’ salary to buy a fat rock, locking it down and starting a family?
I’ve never felt compelled to do what I was told. Call it freethinking or an issue with authority; my first impulse has always been to question what I’m told, at best, or, on principle, just doing the opposite (which I now recognize as being equally silly). Whether it is being dictated to me by a random stranger, my parents or one of those ubiquitously clichéd societal narratives we all know and are forced to grapple with, I will always be introspective and critically engaged in the decisions I make. How am I not going to think deeply and profoundly about the person I’m going to spend the rest of my life with? It blows my mind how blasé some people approach marriage.
When I think about a commitment like marriage, I immediately think about other big commitments I’ve made in life. For example, I remember getting an apartment with my best friend right after college. Being so young and naïve, we were just excited to be all grown up (finally!) and living on our own. I think we assumed that every day together would just be an endless party. With a rigorous daily grind at our low-paying social service jobs and the high cost of living in New York City, it was anything but. Let me put it this way — we lived together for a little over three years and it was an absolute miracle that we both made it out of that apartment alive! And that’s not saying anything bad about either of us. We’re both pretty easygoing, well-intentioned dudes.
Truth is, it’s just damn hard to live with another human being. No matter how much you love them and no matter how well you get along, it’s tough because human beings are work. Each person has his or her own annoying living habits and personality quirks. And that’s not even getting into how complicated things then become when you mix in sex…
Read more: Carlos Andrés Gómez, Huffington Post