maybe this kind of gender essentialist post would not be so boring to me if it were funnier or more clever or interesting. i hate to be harsh, but no thx.
i don't feel like an adult because for the most part i struggle with shame about who i am and feeling like "i'm not doing a good enough job." i only very rarely am able to accept who i am with my failings. i often feel like failure is inevitable and i feel pretty constantly overwhelmed by my negative emotions. i know that none of these feelings are helpful, but for the most part i feel fairly powerless to change them. oh well..guess i'm still working on it.
i don't know...to be honest i think that it's not productive to want to identify with this idea of the "adult who has their stuff together." we are all broken to some degree, we all struggle, we all need help. i'd be in favor of a definition of adulthood that reflected that acknowledgment of our own weaknesses and struggles instead of the version that i more typically hear (especially in discussions with other women) that are more like "i'm a woman and i own it. i'm invincible and i know i can do it."
@catalina So, I think I have a compromise solution that may work for you. This is basically what my parents did. Only, they eloped and told people after, and my dad's parents objected that they didn't marry in a Catholic church. So they went ahead and had a Catholic ceremony in my grandparents' hometown to appease them. But they did NOT have a wedding and that whole shebang. They also insisted that my grandparents honor their original, real wedding date for anniversary purposes. Now, my grandparents did do that; they seemed to care more that my parents were married in the eyes of the church at all, and weren't concerned about secular weddings not being real or anything like that. So its application for you works best if your mom takes a similar stance to my grandparents.
Basically, you just do what my parents did, just with advance notice. Get married where and when you want, then have a ceremony - but NOT a "wedding" - in your mom's church on a random Tuesday or whenever the priest will take you (or find a church near her with a more flexible priest if hers is rigid). And insist that the first date is the real one. That way, your *real* marriage wouldn't have any trace of a sham feeling to it, your mom would (hopefully) be happy that your marriage "passes" under her beliefs, and you don't have to deal with the whole throwing-a-wedding expense/hassle.
@catalina From what you've written it doesn't sound like getting married in the Catholic Church is really an option. I don't think a lot of priests are going to agree to perform a ceremony for folks outside the faith and your fiance won't lie to the priest (not that I recommend that!). Is there a third option between the full-out Catholic mass and the city hall ceremony? Like having it at a Unitarian church? Or having a civil ceremony but including some Bible verses and other Catholic traditions? But if anything other than a city hall ceremony fills you with dread, do the city hall ceremony! Don't go into debt! It's super thoughtful of you to consider your mom's feelings but you can't control how she feels.
@catalina My parents are super Catholic as well (like, they refuse to visit my sister even for a party because she lives with her boyfriend, and she's 27 years old).
Are any of your siblings married? Did any of them get married outside of church or talk about getting married outside of a church? I didn't get married in a church and my mom was actually ok with it (I mean, I know she's sad generally that I'm not religious, but that cat was already out of the bag at that point--she didn't give me extra grief about the wedding). I think she was just so glad I wasn't living in sin anymore that she was fine with it. I would definitely have expected more pushback.
@catalina I don't know that I have any useful advice but I have a lot of sympathy. My parents are Jehovah's Witnesses and I used to be one and it is a constant source of family stress between us. Before my husband and I were married we were living together and my family was basically shunning us. When we got married I don't think they cared that it was a court house wedding because they were just relieved that we were getting married. I'm really glad we had the court house wedding though, so stress free. The thought of wedding planning makes me really anxious too. Anyway I'm really sorry you have to deal with this. Families are so complicated.
My dad canceled his first date with my mother to watch the series finale, then sent flowers and rescheduled.
I've always been weirdly obsessed with the Mary Tyler Moore Show, but when I watched it again around 22-24, it pretty much pulled my entire adult life into focus.
I've never understood why women can relate so much to Liz Lemon but they largely ignore Mary Richards.
@catalina As a Wisconsin native, I am convinced that MTM encapsulates the polite, restrained ethos of the upper Midwest.
And don't forget Betty White as Sue Ann Nivens! We all remember Betty as a sweet grandma, but Sue Ann was vicious.