Boston Marriage: Food For Thought

With Spring in full swing and Summer just around the corner, we’re coming out from under our down coats and busting out those sandals, shorts and…veils? Yeah, veil wouldn’t have been next on my summer wardrobe list either, but I can’t help but notice all the women running (or stumbling rather) around Cleveland with veils on. It dawned on me last weekend though as I awkwardly waited for one bachelorette party to help their bride out of my lap, that summer also means wedding season (her crown fell over her eyes and before I knew it drunk and disorderly bride was literally in my lap…awesome).

While I’m not usually one to hate on love, all I could think that night was nothing makes me want to vomit more than the thought of getting married. While granted at 23 this is probably a normal feeling, I think there might always be a part of me that feels this way.

Not to say I don’t ever want to get married—I’m just not convinced it really works.

Queue Boston Marriage

I cant remember where I first heard this term, but it’s stuck with me ever since. For those of you who don’t know, the term was first coined in the late 19th century and “describes two women living together, independent of financial support from a man.” *no they were not lesbians

You’re probably thinking this sounds like your first roommate out of college, but it was more than that—it was a partnership. The more I looked into it the more the whole thing made sense to me.

The way our society is now, most women are independent until they don’t have to be—until they meet “the one.” We are all great to have the job, car, house, social life all on our own, but for most it feels like it’s what you do while your waiting to meet that perfect someone. But why is that?

Girls grow up being told they’re going to meet the most perfect guy one day and feel a special kind of happiness that only that bond can bring. Flash forward 25, 30 years and that message we grew up hearing is still as true as ever. Women are told that when you meet the right man the connection will be so deep you’ll feel a kind of happiness only he can bring and you’ll want to get married and share your life with him. While this very well may be true, I keep getting hung up on the connection part.

Women who chose the Boston Marriage lifestyle did so because they felt like they had a better connection to women than men. They were attracted to men, had long-term boyfriends, dated etc., but when it came to sharing the in’s and out’s of everyday life and making important decisions they preferred to share that with another woman because they understood each other better.

While this Boston Marriage set up becomes complicated when you want to have kids and a family—it just makes sense to me. I get where they were coming from.

For myself, I don’t believe a man, no matter how much he loves and adores you, can truly understand you in the same way a woman can. And vice versa. I know I’m never going to understand or connect to a guy on the same level as his life long best friend.

We are built differently. We think differently.

Now this is where all my married readers out there are saying, “yeah, but that’s why it works! Men and women bring different things to the table that are needed to make a relationship work.”

I agree. That’s probably true to some extent, but I would argue that’s also way half of marriages in the U.S. end in divorce. You watch the shows, hear all the stories and the most common thread is that one or both people involved doesn’t feel understood…they don’t know how to talk to them…they don’t understand what they need.

Like I said, 9 out of 10—I’m going to get married like everyone else, but I really do think there is a lot of truth to this concept.

People are really quick to judge the polygamist lifestyle, but if you hear any of the wives talk, they all say they love the companionship and partnership they have with the other wives—it’s one of their favorite parts. That they get something additional in a polygamist marriage with the other wives. I can’t help but wonder if it’s because they’re all women and connect on a different level much like the Boston Marriage describes.

One of my best friends recently texted me and said she had a dream I got pregnant and she woke up really angry about. I laughed and told her she wasn’t allowed to be angry because if that ever did happen I was raising it with her! She goes, “oh, we’d be the best moms!” Obviously not an ideal situation BUT I was like well we would actually probably kick ass at that.

Either way, there are challenges and complications with any relationship, romantic or not. Maybe it’s my age or my inner Carrie Bradshaw coming out, but there is something to be said for best friends who understand you better than you understand yourself.

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Gabrielle Gentile

Gabrielle Gentile is a senior public relations major at Kent State University with a passion for writing, communications and Snapchat enthusiast. Gabrielle learned quickly through school projects and involvement on campus, she is a born leader and will stop at nothing to present the best version of herself and her work. In addition to being a full time student, Gabrielle works in sales operations at GE Lighting. When she is not working, you can catch her running through Cleveland training for her next half marathon or trying out the latest fitness craze. 

1 CommentLeave a comment

  • Going on almost 9 years of marriage and I agree with many parts of this post. Having a daughter has made me even more upfront with my kiddos that a) you need to learn to stand on your own two feet and b) ‘perfect’ is boring and doesn’t exist. My husband and I have a partnership. Sometimes it’s pretty but sometimes it’s ‘don’t you have a work trip soon?’ ugly. But it’s real. And it’s a choice.

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