showers bring May flowers, which in turn are used in floral
arrangements for June weddings.
involve beautiful brides and handsome grooms. Fancy
weddings for a happy man and woman are traditional,
of course. But not everyone follows tradition.
some time, same sex couples have been breaking the bride and
groom tradition. But one brave soul has
gone even further.
Nadal, 29, the man who married himself two years ago. Who says weddings
are only for couples?
The ceremony occurred in New York City where
Nadal took his vows — "I, Kevin
Nadal, take me, Kevin Nadal, to have and hold, in sickness and
health'' — and then partied for hours with 125 family
members and friends.
The only close family members
absent from the ceremony and reception were his parents who, Nadal said, hold
traditional Filipino values and would not understand.
Nadal told Sharon Krum, a
reporter for The Hindu, that his purpose in staging the special
event was to celebrate single life while also highlighting
discrimination against single people.
"I've attended at least a dozen
weddings, and I have bought tons of gifts for those couples,"
Nadal observed. "I'm happy to do it. But I started
thinking: we always celebrate married life, why not single
"Single people are marginalized
in our culture," Nadal added. "People think you don't have the
commitment to be in a relationship."
off the event with a speech about what it means to be single in
American society. By the end of the night, he felt people
understood that the "wedding" was an important personal
statement by a single man -- not just an excuse to throw a big
So far, I
have not found any other news stories about solo marriages.
Apparently, Nadal's wedding is, at least so far, a unique true
short-story author Charlie Sundt got a head start on the idea
when he wrote a fictional piece about himself in 1999 entitled
"The Man Who Married Himself." He filled the
humorous anecdotes about his wedding day and honeymoon.
In the story,
the main character, Charlie Fish, recounts how he convinced his
minister that self marriage did not violate any biblical
precepts. His parents were harder to convince, but they
eventually gave in.
like Kevin Nadal and fictional characters like Charlie Fish are
few and far between. But other unmarried men and women are
creating ways to celebrate their single life, even if it's not
through a solo wedding.
Gruver, a writer for the Wichita Eagle. She wrote an essay
for the paper entitled "Single and 40 calls for a catch-up
In it, Gruver
recalls the numerous wedding shower, marriage, and baby shower
presents she has bought for people over the
years. Being single and without children, Gruver always
seems to be on the giving, not the receiving, end of gifts.
decided to throw her self a "40 and Single" shower, rather than
a wedding or baby shower. And she pledged to
register at a department store so guests would know what
type of gifts she preferred.
women have started using gift registries too, especially for a
milestone birthday. And with so many single women buying homes
prior to marrying, it seems reasonable that they would use
a gift registry for a house warming party.
But what do
the etiquette experts have to say about a gift registry for
Judith P. Bowman, president of
Protocol Consultants International in Boston, told a
Massachusetts journalist for the The Eagle that a singles'
registry doesn't fall within the boundaries of protocol.
But Becca Kaufman, etiquette
expert at weddingquestions.com, disagreed. "If you're 30
and you don't have a wedding on the horizon and you just bought
a new house, why shouldn't you register?"
"I am totally horrified," Bowman said. "It's a very sad time and
a poor reflection on what is happening in our society. I think
it's just disgraceful."
So even if solo weddings don't catch
on, I'm betting that more single people will be participating in
gift registries in the future.
And why not? Why should
married folks get all the goodies?
Unmarried America 2007
Thomas F. Coleman, Executive Director of Unmarried America, is an
attorney with 33 years of experience in singles' rights, family
diversity, domestic partner benefits, and marital status discrimination.
Each week he adds a new commentary to Column One: Eye on Unmarried
email@example.com. Unmarried America is a nonprofit
information service for unmarried employees, consumers, taxpayers, and