Kim Kardashian, I am mad at you! No, not because you made a mockery of marriage by turning it into a publicity stunt. And no, not because you spent tons of money on a lavish wedding to someone you knew it wouldn't work out with. I'm not even angry with you because you wasted a day in the life of your guests AND two nights of my life (though, you did).
I'm angry because you have the money, the business empire and all the reason in the world to throw a lavish celebration for yourself without having to cast someone as a groom, have a legal ceremony and call it a wedding.
The truth is, despite being one of the most famous women in the country right now, despite being followed by paparazzi, having a clothing line, a perfume line, two TV shows AND a sex tape, you are really not so different from a lot of young women in this country right now .... Your excitement about the glamour, attention, ability to spend lavishly without judgment and have a celebration tailored exactly to your tastes completely overshadowed the fact that you were actually embarking on the start of a marriage. Kim, despite being an actual celebrity, you were still blinded by the excitement of starring in a wedding.
Actually, ladies and gentlemen, Kim K's extravagant wedding was a slightly larger than life version of what is happening all across the country: we are WEDDING obsessed. Not marriage obsessed, but wedding obsessed. We are obsessed with the opportunity to be, the experience of, and the reminiscing about being a bride and all that it entails. From the chance to take styled staged engagement photos with matching outfits down to the getting to "splurge" on $5,000 designer gowns and red-soled Louboutins the average girl would never purchase, the wedding celebration has become in our culture an occasion for grown women to treat themselves like a celebrity for a day, the allure of which is so compelling, even REAL celebrities can't resist it!
Like all things Kardashian, Kim's wedding "event" was a heavy-handed example of something that happens all the time: despite obvious relationship issues, the groom was cast with the perfect initial to create an even more perfect Lehr & Black monogram. But, in all seriousness, many women find themselves in the position of being proposed to by Mr. "I think he's right" and getting so swept up in the excitement of being the star of their wedding production, it's easy to forget that after six hours of celebrating they are stuck with a lifetime (or 72 days) of being Mrs. "I Think He's Right". I can't help but notice the tremendous pressure put on women to cross "being married" off of their list of things to do by 30, and as of late "being married" has become nearly equitable with "being a bride." Whether that pressure be from the bride herself OR from her family to "see her walk down the aisle", after 27, I think it causes a lot of women to start to look at everyone they date as possibly being "the one". Unfortunately, that may not be "the one" to share their life with, but it might be "the one" to co-star in a stylish wedding celebration.
Which leads to my next question: If it were suddenly a universally socially acceptable custom to take 20K-100K to celebrate our 30th birthdays in a lavish and extravagant way, would we have as many weddings? Would we have as many divorces? I ask this as someone who makes a living from lavish wedding celebrations. I just wonder what would happen if we encouraged women to look forward to celebrating themselves and their accomplishments at this milestone of their life instead of fretting that they need to find a partner in order to star in a celebration? Oprah has never been married, but she's shamelessly (and deservedly) celebrated herself and others at birthdays, launches and her famous Legends ball. Who would begrudge Kim Kardashian for having the same party (without the ceremony) simply to celebrate that with little to no actual talent, she has built an empire? Certainly not I. And frankly, I wouldn't begrudge any woman, reality TV star or not, for celebrating herself vs. having a wedding if the right partner hadn't presented themselves yet.