While I am always thrilled to be invited to any party, as I get older, I've been noticing a huge ugly break in wedding etiquette. Traditionally, single women should be invited to a wedding or any party with an escort. There is nothing I find more conflicting (and insulting)in my 30s than being forced to attend a wedding all by myself. While I'm happy that yet again, someone I know has found true love, I am not happy that I have to witness your heartfelt wedding vows--alone.
Ok, I'm not married or engaged and I live alone with my cat. Why not throw it all in my face and make me attend your wedding all by myself? Better yet, why not invite me with my single mother and make us sit together like some crazy old maid couple? Why not torture me as I pretend to have to go to the bathroom during the slow songs and sit in the stall and feel sorry for myself? Oh, and how I love it when I have to admit to your great aunt that I am there alone and not really seeing anyone and chances are I'll be alone for the rest of my life.
My life is unsettled and as I sit alone at the table and watch you dance with your brand new husband in your new $8,000 Monique Lhuillier gown, I am confronted with the reality that if I were to drop dead in my apartment, my body might not be found for several weeks. Also, I will never have new pots and pans and I will be eating off my dead grandmother's chipped plates for the rest of my life. My cat is my child. These are the types of thoughts I have as I sit alone at the table during your wedding reception. Aren't you glad you invited me alone to save some space? I'm having such a fucking good time.
I understand that brides and grooms (and their parents) struggle to keep wedding expenses in check and, in turn, are more inclined to invite more people they know than rather my anonymous escort. Yet, while I understand this aspect, I just want to explain my side of the coin. According to tradition, at my age, for all intents and purposes, the assumption is that I should have a spouse anyway. In my 20s, I didn't mind attending weddings alone. It was easier for me then. Now, I find myself sometimes thinking that perhaps time is running out for me and that I'll never meet the "right one." I am tired of dancing with myself. And, I'm usually so optimistic. It's the damned possibility of being alone at your wedding that is bringing up all these depressing thoughts and low self esteem. I was feeling good until I realized I have to travel by myself to sit alone and watch everyone else around me be happy and in love at your wedding. There's nothing like a good old-fashioned wedding to exacerbate these old maid feelings. FYI, I'm also too old to "hook up" or to be excited about other single people at the wedding. My friends who invite me alone always go into this story about how there will be a lot of "single people" at the wedding. While the couple may not have class or sense to invite me with a date, I do have enough class to not get sloppy drunk and make out with your cousin Phil in a broom closet as you cut the cake.
So, if your guest is over 30, you should bite the bullet and invite her with a guest. As you can see from this blog panic attack, going solo to your nuptials can be traumatic for your over-30 friends!