Holy Tori Amos! Great Elizabeth Wurtzel! Here’s how this Cosmopolitan story starts:
On the rooftop of her Brooklyn apartment building this past spring, Erika Anderson put on a vintage-style white wedding dress, stood before a circle of her closest friends, and committed herself — to herself.
“I choose you today,” she said. Later she tossed the bouquet to friends and downed two shots of whiskey, one for herself and one for herself. She had planned the event for weeks, sending invitations, finding the perfect dress, writing her vows, buying rosé and fresh baguettes and fruit tarts from a French bakery. For the decor: an array of shot glasses emblazoned with the words “You and Me.” In each one, a red rose.
“It wasn’t an easy decision,” she’d noted on the wedding invitations. “I had cold feet for 35 years. But then I decided it was time to settle down. To get myself a whole damn apartment. To celebrate birthday #36 by wearing an engagement ring and saying: YES TO ME. I even made a registry, because this is America.”
Self-marriage is a small but growing movement, with consultants and self-wedding planners popping up across the world. In Canada, a service called Marry Yourself Vancouver launched this past summer, offering consulting services and wedding photography. In Japan, a travel agency called Cerca Travel offers a two-day self-wedding package in Kyoto: You can choose a wedding gown, bouquet, and hairstyle, and pose for formal wedding portraits. On the website I Married Me, you can buy a DIY marriage kit: For $50, you get a sterling silver ring, ceremony instructions, vows, and 24 “affirmation cards” to remind you of your vows over time. For $230, you can get the kit with a 14-karat gold ring.
Meanwhile, the crazy manifests on the other coast too:
When she graduated in 2011, Dominique went to the Burning Man festival in Nevada, where the theme was “rites of passage.” She decided to help women at Burning Man marry themselves, saying their vows into a mirror. Word got around and some 100 women showed up to tie the knot. Some came wearing wedding gowns; others carried flowers. The scene was emotional, Dominique says. “Imagine hearing 100 women stand in front of a mirror and speak the words that they have always longed to hear.”
“I will never leave myself.”
“I promise to ask for help when I’m suffering.”
“I promise to look in the mirror every day and be grateful.”
“I promise to give you the incredible life that you long for.”
Now 27, Dominique is a self-marriage counselor and minister, offering services including consulting sessions and private ceremonies through her website, Self Marriage Ceremonies, which she runs from her home in northern California.
Honestly, the barbarians should just roll right in now. We have too much money and too little sense to live.