Knocked up? Thinking of tying the knot? Think a little harder.
Brandy did it a decade ago. Jennifer Garner and Gwyneth Paltrow did it a few years ago. Christina Milian did it just last month. And plenty of regular people have done it for most of recorded history. We speak, of course, of the old shotgun wedding; a tradition that, fortunately these days, rarely involves a shotgun. Are you pregnant and considering a shotgun wedding? If so, we recommend you ask yourself a few questions first.
1. Are others pressuring you to get married? Do you feel that you're only considering tying the knot because your parents are telling you to? Because of cultural and religious pressures? Because you feel society will chastise you for being an unwed mother? No woman should get married against her will, regardless of whether she's pregnant or not. Be honest with yourself. How much of this marriage idea is yours and how much is the outside world's? Wedding Day Disasters
2. Would you want to marry this guy eventually, regardless of the pregnancy? Yes, you wanted to sleep with him (clearly), but there's a big difference between sleeping with a man and marrying him. Before you walk down the aisle with your baby daddy, think back on what the two of you were like before the pregnancy. Did you imagine yourself marrying him down the road before he became your child's father? Did you see him as someone with whom you might want to at least try that path with? Alternatively, did the thought only cross your mind once you saw that positive EPT test? And if so, when it did, did the idea make you happy or fill you with dread? My Son And I Are Dating My Boyfriend
3. Does he really want to marry you? Plenty of guys out there will step up to the plate and walk down the aisle because they want to do right by the girl they got into trouble. But that doesn't mean they want to. Some might only be offering to do it because they're being pressured by outside forces. Some might only be suggesting it because they don't want to come off as jerks. In some cases, they might not even be pretending to want marriage, but are just playing along. Regardless, know that your man really wants to promise his life to you before you promise yours to him. What Do Guys Think About Marriage? Read His Mind Here
4. Will he make a good husband? He might be good in bed. He might even be a good boyfriend. But that doesn't mean the man who knocked you up will make a good husband. Maybe he's a sleep-around. Maybe he's not particularly supportive. Maybe he just isn't a grown-up (ahem, Levi Johnston). Think hard about what qualities your man would bring to a marriage, and whether those qualities would inevitably make the partnership stronger or undermine it. Tips For An Affair-Proof Marriage
5. Are you ready to get married? You already have a lot to deal with. A pregnancy. New motherhood. Added financial and emotional hardships. Do you feel you can juggle those and a new marriage as well? Maybe you can, but need a little time to adjust to motherhood first. Or maybe, by the time you realize you're ready for marriage, you won't want to marry the man who fathered your child. The Newlywed Catch 22