So, You’re Looking for a #WeddingPhotographer ? | Part 1
THE QUESTION OF DIVORCE WHEN CONSIDERING WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY
That’s right, the D word! Presumably a topic that someone who photographs weddings ought to avoid but I have the stones for it! I am going right there!
I tell you, it does NOT happen often but every now and then someone; either male or female, during a consultation for a wedding photography package, will suggest that spending money on such an investment may be a waste given that there’s a possibility of divorce. Sure, it’s said sort of tongue-in-cheek but some measure of seriousness (along with pre-wedding jitters, cold feet or whatever you want to call it; “fear” might be a good description) is still detectable.
Just to quickly get it out of the way here, if you’re just engaged to be married and divorce is on your mind during your wedding planning don’t even bother booking a wedding photography consultation. If a photographer is pushing you into one, then have some backbone and don’t let him or her push you into it. It probably is an arrant waste of your time and money.
I suspect that people who actually do agree on prenuptial agreements have a better chance at overlooking the distrust that’s obviously associated, and making certain that their (insert the word “happy”) marriages endure. I only suspect this because I have yet to find a study from a credible source that indicates that the divorce rate among couples who sign prenups is significantly higher than of couples who don’t sign one (if you know of such reliable studies or have conducted any yourself, I dare invite you to share the results below in the comment section. That ought to be interesting.
Anyway, as much as signing a wedding photography agreement is sort of a pre-marital contract it is one that you share with a photographer not your prospective better half. It is not the same as a real prenup, so if you have any concerns about divorce definitely do not seek out a photographer. Not even me. You have bigger issues to work out with each other first.
As you’re probably wondering, yes, some of the weddings that I have personally photographed have indeed ended in divorces. I report that knowing full-well that there are marriage pessimists who will read that as a sign that divorce is inevitable. It only is if you and your partner truly aren’t compatible, and one or neither of you are willing to permanently work equally at making your marriage last.
What do you contribute to your relationship? Do you bring genuine love, affection, encouragement, trust and loyalty to the table or do you think your hot bod and hot sex is all that should be required of you? Are you willing to keep privacy between you and the one you’re going to marry or will you share everything sacred with your parents, siblings, friends and people in the workplace? Are you willing to be a or the breadwinner or are you the sort to use your ability to finance a marriage as a means to surreptitiously dominate your partner and force him or her to lose all sense of independence and individuality? If your better half were to become disabled or extremely ill and incontinent would you help him or her clean up after themselves and maintain dignity through their struggle, or would you abandon ship?
Being in love is one of the imperfect but extremely important experiences of the human condition that we will be forever trying to get right.
Who are you marrying, and why?
Prior to your engagement, you spent time dating or courting each other. Did you make good use of that time? Was it serious and exclusive dating or the casual kind that you did with all of the guys or girls you already figured couldn’t be “the one?”
Personally, I’m so glad that dating is far behind me. I find it to be an awkward period at best. People try so hard – too hard, to show their best qualities in order to impress and have a good time all of the time. A lot of this is good but it still can interfere with the getting to know the reality of someone’s character. That can always cause lingering doubt if facades are seldom dropped. It’s important to use dating as a profound opportunity to communicate openly and honestly.
Can you accept the fact that your fiancé’s family will never approve of your pending marriage because you are of a different race, ethnicity, culture, subculture, nationality, political ideology that they can’t stand, a dwarf, physically disabled or aren’t wealthy? You consider yourself tolerant of all people but are you aware that the person you have agreed to wed has a particular hatred for certain cultures? Is that okay with you? Maybe that despised culture is a part of your bloodline. Can you accept the fact that your fiancé’s family will never approve of your pending marriage because you are both of the same sexual orientation or that at least one of you is transgendered? Are you sexually compatible? Your partner is good to you but do you know that he or she takes pleasure in abusing other people? Are you okay with that? Do you both want children or even more if you already have any from previous relationships? Are you of the same religion, and if not, what spiritual aspirations do you have for your kids? Do you believe in corporal punishment or would you be the hands-off and let the kids get, say and do whatever they want kind of parents? Perhaps your mindset is somewhere in between these modes.
For however long it takes for you to truly figure each other out, dating is the time that you should spend really getting to know whether or not you are compatible with someone. Two people considering the serious details together can help their relationship to mature or make them realize that they may never be ready to have their connection solemnized and recorded for posterity. The serious aspects of dating are important. It is not a time to be squandered.
Strong Relationships Do Endure
Most of the weddings that I have shot have been of couples who are still married. One such pair booked a consultation with me and the groom, who had been married once before, behaved in a way that made me feel as though he wasn’t that interested in getting married again. It just seemed to me that he was going through the motions so as to not disappoint his bride who had never been previously married, and was eager to tie the knot with her man.
Despite the negative vibe, I still felt that they would still get hitched, and that their union would last. Sure enough, I got to photograph their wedding and as I post this they’ve remained married for the past nine years. I’m confident that their marriage will last at least another nine, if not forever.
I’ve also done restorations of severely damaged wedding photos that were taken by someone else in the 1940’s. I’m talking about people in their 80’s and 90’s who tied the knot during and shortly after WWII – now there’s a real conflict. Death will likely do them part. That has already come true for one of the couples whose pictures I’ve restored.
In case you are also wondering, my wife and I have been married only once; never to anyone else previously. After a lengthy courtship, we got married in 1999. We are still (insert the word “happily”) married today. In fact, were not just still married but are also still in love with each other. Why, because we talk to each other.
We argue, and then work out mutual and realistic solutions to our problems so that we can move on with fighting for each other instead of against each other. We support and stick up for each other. We trust each other. We are faithful to each other. We don’t try to dominate each other, and won’t stand for the manipulation or abuse of one another. We want each other. We love and even lust after each other!
We never got a prenup, either. I don’t mention prenups to slam them, they have their place but from the very beginning Kim and I agreed to only pursue what we can equally share with each other. Quite simply, we are meant to be with each other.
Rely on Logical Reasons Instead of Excuses
Some use the excuse that because their parents got divorced when they were little they now have trust issues. Okay, perhaps. I can see that happening but even if so, I can’t empathize. Death parted my wife’s parents but mine were divorced by the time I was five, and I’ve always fully understood all of the reasons why. It hasn’t left me with such deeply seated trust issues surrounding marriage. I feel safe and highly valued with my wife. No other woman has ever made me feel this way, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
It just has to make sense. If you are certain that your relationship with the person you’re supposed to get married to is like mine, then contact me. We’ll book a consultation.