I seem to be of a certain age and relationship status (did that term even exist before Facebook?) where I am constantly being asked if / when I’m getting married.
Take me to any social gathering, wedding, picnic, party, or family dinner, and the question always comes up: “what about you? When are you and A getting married?”
Being exceptionally humble, I chalked it up to the fact that I’m successful, attractive, witty, and a remarkably talented writer…who wouldn’t want to marry me?!
When I mentioned this A, he laughed and said, “honey, it’s because of your fat finger.”
Ah, the fat finger.
So, my left ring finger is WAY fatter than the right one. And lately, I’ve lost a little weight and my favorite ring (a gift from my parents) has started sliding off my right ring finger. So I moved it to the fat one.
And ever since then, people have been thinking that A and I got engaged, since engagement rings are traditionally worn on the left ring finger.
This is incredibly amusing to me, since I’m as-of-yet unconvinced about the benefits of marriage, weddings, and last-but-not-least, engagement rings.
Ok, that’s enough about my finger-image issues…
The reason I bring up marriage / weddings is not because I just saw Gone Girl…it’s actually because I read a fascinating piece of news this weekend.
Let frugal bloggers everywhere rejoice – two economists have done a study comparing the cost of your wedding to the longevity of your marriage.
And, surprise, surprise, the cheaper the wedding, the happier and longer-lasting the marriage.
The two researchers are economics professors at Emory University and they used data from more than 3000 married couples in the United States.
According to the WSJ, “After analyzing their data, the authors found that women whose weddings had cost more than $20,000 (in 2014 dollars) ended up getting divorced 60% more often than those whose weddings were cheaper. And men who spent between $2,000 and $4,000 on their engagement ring got divorced 30% more often than those who spent between $500 and $2,000.”
The research was published under the title, “‘A Diamond is Forever’ and Other Fairy Tales: The Relationship Between Wedding Expenses and Marriage Duration.”
Based on their findings, the study also suggests:
1. Date for three years before deciding to get married
2. Don’t skip the honeymoon (seriously folks, this will decrease your chance of divorce by 41%).
3. Have a large wedding, but keep it under $10K.
I rarely feel surprised by a study, but this one really got me thinking. I always advise couples to spend very little on their weddings for practical, financial reasons (i.e. if you want to buy a house, cut your wedding budget in half; or choose a ring, a wedding, or a honeymoon, but not all three…) but I’ve never thought about giving this advice because it will actually make a couple happier.
Is this old news? Did anyone make wedding decisions with their future happiness in mind? Do you think the study is bogus?