I’m weeks away from getting married, and I’ve been reasonably calm throughout the process. A few meltdowns here or there, but overall it’s been smooth sailing. But something has been biting at me the last few weeks and I now realize why I’m freaking out.
I fear losing my autonomy.
My amazing future husband and I have been together just over two years and engaged over one. He’s amazing, and kind, and is a perfectly balanced feminist who looks like a Viking biker. I can’t even imagine my life without him in it, let alone how I managed to get here without him. Yet I’ve been really stressed over the fact that he and I become WE, US, THEM, in the eyes of the law, family, and society.
I understand that we remain individuals who are choosing to share our lives but I can’t shake the feeling that I’m losing a bit of myself in this union. Not by his asking, or tradition requiring it, but that I’m somehow not going to wake up one day not as “Jenn” but as “Mrs. C” or “C’s wife” and that’s all I’ll be.
We’re both keeping our current last names, and nothing will fundamentally change between us, but the Independent Spirit who spent more of her life single by choice is now forever linked as half of a pair.
Maybe this is because I never settled for less, and that I was just so used to having to “always do me” that being part of a pair doesn’t seem to fit me. Keeping in mind that I want this and, as I’ve said above, I can’t imagine not doing this. This pairing fits us both perfectly. We actually prefer to be with each other to the exclusion of all others.
It’s just a strange place to be in. I’m not sure if I feel this way because I’m established in my life, career, relationships, and most importantly in myself, or if others feel this way, too.
Marriage? Moving in together? Becoming a parent? Who else struggled with feeling like they were losing their “me” when becoming an “us”?