The Marriage Pact

Have you ever made a pact?

Not in the way of founding a purple sock club or promising your siblings to keep the shattering of your parent’s rare vase a secret. I’m talking about a marriage pact.

Haven’t we all made one, or at least know someone who has? High school buddies all over the world pinkie swear that if they’re both single by the time they turn a certain age they’ll spend the rest of their lives together… as a married couple. Eek!

But what does a marriage pact really mean? Is it set in stone? A permanent contract for which you can never get yourself out of?

The pact could mean a number of things, depending on the pacters’ perspective. It could be a phony-baloney phrase that you just say, something to the caliber of “We should get a drink sometime…” It could be a subtle hint that you’re madly in love with your pact companion and can only muster up the courage to suggest that “maybe, someday if we happen to be at the right place at the right time…” Or, perhaps in most cases, it’s sheer desperation. “If I was forced to choose between being single and lonely forever or marrying you, I guess marrying you would be less terrible.”

You’d hope these pacts were made out of jest, but would they be so popular if you were “just playin’”?

Well, the fact of the matter is “just playin’” doesn’t feel so playful when the age of 30 hits you like a bride’s oversized bouquet. Single, you hope like heck your marriage pact buddy either:
a.) is already married
b.) is in a very, very serious relationship with someone else, or
c.) has no recollection of the pact and nothing in writing exists to remind them.

If all else fails, remember there are no rules against extending the pact deadline another 15+ years. And don’t flatter yourself – you’re probably both looking to extend. After all, the premise of the pact is admitting you both could easily live without the other person.

Shootin’ the Wit is a weekly column about everyday life that should never, ever be taken too seriously.

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