Why do people marry themselves? The rise of the sologamist wedding

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Amy Swales
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“Self-marriage addresses the notion that being single and thoroughly enjoying it is a viable lifestyle choice; whether this is for a short period of time, during several stages in your life or for most of your adult years. I am a firm believer in the fact that it is possible to live a fulfilled life on your own terms, without a partner to 'complete you'.”

So said Sophie Tanner back in 2015, speaking to about her decision to marry herself. And as she celebrates her second anniversary, still regarding it as “one of the best days of my life”, it seems others are clicking on to the self-wedding concept.

Several reports are now pegging the practice as a trend, with happy singles in New York, California, Canada, Kyoto and Yorkshire among the people pledging love to themselves.

Sologamists often go the whole hog too; there’s a ceremony and a reception for friends and family, while some companies now offer solo wedding packages complete with rings, affirmation cards, vows and professional photography.

So why do it?

Those who choose to walk down the aisle and greet themselves at the end insist that it’s not about superficially being obsessed with themselves.

In fact, people such as Tanner say it’s an almost spiritual experience, similar to rites of passage in other cultures. It’s about marking their commitment to self-love as well as recognising the value in themselves as a being in their own right, not necessarily needing another person in order to feel ‘complete’.

Remember that SATC where Carrie, frustrated with paying out for constant baby showers and weddings and being judged by her married friend for spending $485 on shoes, registers at Manolo Blahnik, saying it’s celebrating her relationship with herself?

And sologamists say it doesn’t mean they’re cutting themselves off from relationships, but that it means they’ve learnt to truly love themselves. Which they believe if anything, puts them in an even better position to love someone else.

Of her own wedding, Tanner told us: “The day was such a dream it only served to strengthen my conviction that I was doing the right thing, I felt humbled by all the support and love. I didn’t really feel self-conscious because everyone was enjoying themselves so much […]

“I would wholly recommend this sort of ceremony to others who feel they would like to celebrate themselves. Other cultures have rites of passage which are seen as fundamental to human growth and development, as well as socialisation, I think self-marriage serves this purpose […]

“I promised to face my disappointments, embrace my dreams, realize my hopes and accept my failures through understanding, openness and sensitivity to others. That’s a pretty big ask but I aim to stick to those vows as best I can.”

Read Sophie Tanner’s story here.

Images: iStock



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Amy Swales

Amy Swales is a freelance writer who likes to eat, drink and talk about her dog. She will continue to plunder her own life and the lives of her loved ones for material in the name of comedy, catharsis and getting pictures of her dog on the internet.