Capitol Views: Love and Consuming Are Intertwined

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  • February 07, 2011

Consider this diamond ad: “She already knows you love her. Now everyone else will too.”

Before we get cracking with this Monday’s edition of “Wedding Music That Doesn’t Suck”, I wanted to share an article I found over the weekend while reading the Huffington Post.  “Giving Up Half of Our Possessions Made Our Family Whole“, might not seem like a wedding blog appropriate article at first, but there were elements of the article that I thought easily transferred into the wedding realm and the relationship world in general.

The article is about a daughter in a family, who after noticing the juxtaposition of a black Mercedes against a man begging for food, decided the gap in our society between the rich and poor is just too wide.  She urged her family to take action, to help shrink the space between those that have everything and those that have nothing, and she convinced her family to sell their too-large house to one half its size and give the proceeds to help people across the planet.

Articles like this are what the media need to spend more time on. Hannah and her family help reinstate my faith in humans.  The rest of the article then focuses on the repercussions of what selling their house and reevaluating the things they actually needed as a family, did to their relationships.

The part, to me, that most easily transfers to the current state of our wedding world was when the author, Kevin Salwen, Hannah’s father, explains, “We lose track of what truly makes us happy, replacing love of community and connection with love of stuff.” He gives the example of the diamond ad above, how keeping up with the Jones’ and the Smiths, has become more important to than focusing on what people truly need.

I said in my first ‘Real Capitol Wedding’ post, that “weddings are not a competition”.  Although it might feel like it sometimes, the elements that make up your wedding is not the most important part of this time in your life, it’s the fact that you are marrying the love of your life.

Salwen says that their bigger house and multiple possessions caused the family to communicate less and become separate both physically and spiritually. The house, that they had originally saw as a symbol of their love for their children and family, in fact weakened their ability to express love.

When you are planning a wedding, it is so easy to get caught up in the presentation, the appearance of everything. I was guilty of this myself.  I think couples should find themselves stopping amidst the wedding planning more often, refocusing on their communication, connection, and love of not only their soon to be marital partner, but their family and friends involved in the wedding as well, instead of what guests are going to think of the $5,000 flower display, over the $6,500 one. Focusing more on love, less on consumption will bring you greater happiness in the end.

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