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Wedding vows: Skip the obey part?

It seems everyone is talking about the upcoming royal wedding between Kate Middleton and Prince William.  It will surely be the center of intense media coverage. There is even talk of whether or not the vows will include the word obey, i.e. “ I will love, serve, and obey you as long as we both shall live.”

I don’t think that any of my friends included obey in there vows. Come to think of it, none of the last couple of weddings I attended included obey, which is probably a sign of the times.

Do you think that the word obey is important in wedding vows? If you are married, did you use the word obey?  Was it ever an issue of whether or not it should have been included?

My Dad has married a lot of couples (he brags that they are all still together) in his ministerial career and he would encourage the use of the word obey.  He thinks that wives should submit to their husbands, so the word obey is necessary.  If you don’t have religious reasons, would you ever consider keeping the obey part of the wedding vows?

By Wise Diva, Misadventures in Atlanta Dating Blog


243 comments Add your comment

the easter bunny

March 31st, 2011
7:13 am

Obey should be included in the marriage vows. It is the wifes duty to obey every little dictate from the husband. The man of the house is practical, knows how to think on his feet and has better judgement. Imagine the chaos if the wife started thinking on her own. It makes me shudder to think about it. We have all seen the woman that does not obey her husband, she makes the decisions in public that are denigating to the man, like where to park the car, straightening his collar and acting like he is a toddler.
Just to prove my point, when was the last time that you heard of a female in national government make a top of the line decision that made sense? You can’t think of on can you?

Fred

March 31st, 2011
7:13 am

Obey is not about a strict definition of the word. It is about partnering and working together, not at odds.

Bisnono

March 31st, 2011
7:28 am

@ Fred – if it’s about “partnership” as you say, then why is “obey” only something that the woman is supposed to promise??? Why is the MAN not also supposed to obey his wife?? A true partnership is based on love and trust, and understanding that each party has strengths and weaknesses – my husband fills in the gaps where I’m weak, and I do likewise. But to agree to obey my husband as if I were a door mat? Ummmm, no. Never gonna happen. As you can guess, this was the very first part of the traditional vows we removed when we met with our minister. We’ve been married nearly 15 years (courted for 6 as high school sweethearts and then through 4 years of college before that) so after all this time, if obey was such a crucial part of the marriage vows, you’d think we’d have broken up by now. Honestly, I think “obey” should be retired permanently from vows, but to each his own.

Bill Clinton

March 31st, 2011
7:29 am

I never promised to obey.

Hillary Clinton

March 31st, 2011
7:31 am

Get off this blog Bill!

Wondering ?

March 31st, 2011
7:32 am

Is this the best you could come up with to discuss?

How lame!

tyrone from east point

March 31st, 2011
7:33 am

Bisnono sounds like a real peach.

Fred

March 31st, 2011
7:41 am

Bisnono,

It went both ways for us. 20 years this August and they haven’t all been easy (no where near enough time/space to go into – ex from h***) but we both hung in there. Everyone is different but I stand by obey is not a literal definition it is more a frame of mind. If either party takes the “I’m always right” stance instead of *both* being subservient to the other (NOT co-dependent!), its going to be a long and tough road.

Sorry it is going to be a drive-by today. Got to run.

Jumping the Broom

March 31st, 2011
7:51 am

” If you don’t have religious reasons, would you ever consider keeping the obey part of the wedding vows?”

This bothers the hell outta me. Weddings come from religion. Have a different type of ceremony and call it something else if you don’t want to adhere to what its purpose is.

I will have no problem submitting to my future husband when we “jump the broom” this Saturday :-)
Marriage is a PARTNERSHIP, and last I checked both parties recited the “love, honor and obey” vows not just the woman.

Flint-River-Catfish

March 31st, 2011
7:55 am

is every word written in the Bible true????

sign of the times?

March 31st, 2011
7:57 am

We have been married almost 10 years and we used obey in our wedding. It was no big deal, but as usual currently we as people seem to inspect everything very closely. Mainly everyone is afraid they might offend someone…good grief!

GrammarKing

March 31st, 2011
8:02 am

I got married about a week and a half ago, we used Obey. By the way, both of us said it. I didn’t interpret it to mean that I have to obey everything she says; that would be crazy. But I will obey the demands of our partnership, I will obey the promises made in our vows.

Big Tim

March 31st, 2011
8:06 am

Of the lady won’t obey, I put it in her butt. Works every time…

Jumping the Broom

March 31st, 2011
8:10 am

Kudos, Fred.

FYI

March 31st, 2011
8:10 am

Everyone gets a command:
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing[b] her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. -Ephesians 5:21-33

Jumping the Broom

March 31st, 2011
8:15 am

Congrats, GrammarKing~

Jumping the Broom

March 31st, 2011
8:16 am

**standing ovation for FYI**

Now, if this isn’t for you or you have some issue with God and Chrisitianity then please don’t have a Christian wedding/use all of its traditions. That is all.

Edit

March 31st, 2011
8:20 am

It’s “their” and not “there” in:

“I don’t think that any of my friends included obey in there vows.”

Wendy Williams

March 31st, 2011
8:35 am

Just write your own vows…your the one that has to keep them. Now lets talk about SEX..lol

SexyCool

March 31st, 2011
8:35 am

I have no problem with obey.

SexyCool

March 31st, 2011
8:37 am

But then too…I have no problem agreeing with wives submitting.

Duder

March 31st, 2011
8:38 am

If she steps out of line, you hit her with a sack of oranges. Doorknobs leave bruises.

Taxi with broken light driving by

March 31st, 2011
8:44 am

Skip the vows altogether. They are not worth the hot air used to expel them. See the current divorce rate. In fact, any man who marries in this day and age is a dang fool.

DW

March 31st, 2011
8:44 am

Sounds kinda outdated to me

Dan - Simply....Superior

March 31st, 2011
8:47 am

@JTB

So, either use all of the fictious and man created parts of your religious tradition or we’re not allowed to use any? Is that your contention?

Jesus is ROIH…..wait

SlimNumeroUno

March 31st, 2011
9:11 am

Good morning,

Maybe i’ll get a freakin chance to blog today….

Mo (aka Moeisha)

March 31st, 2011
9:13 am

Morning All

Dan – I am LMAO at “Jesus is ROIH…..wait”! OMG I needed that laugh this morning!

BRB

knockoutblonde

March 31st, 2011
9:21 am

Not gonna get married again, so I don’t have to worry about it. Seems like this topic will either turn out badley or fade away quickly. No one should have to OBEY, rather you do out of concern or out of love. If one doesn’t, time to move on.

Wendy, I’m sure some sexual angle will surface before too long. It never fails. It’s everywhere. One of my co-workers told me that internet porn makes more money each year then every single internet industry and website COMBINED. There’s a reason that sex always comes to the surface in any conversation if you give it some time.

NY state of mind

March 31st, 2011
9:21 am

Morn Fam-

I honestly can’t remember if we both said it or not- its traditional (old school) vows and I don’t have a problem with saying it. What I do have a problem with is submissiveness being a one way street.
Any relationship is about compromise and I don’t think that one person (the wife) should obey or give in. I believe you should treat others they way you would want to be treated. I’ve been married and that is something my hubby and I disagreed on. He was use to traditional values and I was a millennium woman. ..eventually we found middle ground. I didn’t at the time and I don’t believe now that there is a such thing as “wife duties” we shared the responsibility of everything. There were times when he cooked, cleaned, did the laundry and took care of my garden- I also cut the grass and have changed a flat tire on our SUV.

knockoutblonde

March 31st, 2011
9:22 am

I am in evermore some kinda mood today….

abc

March 31st, 2011
9:24 am

The word ‘obey’ hasn’t been in wedding vows as sanctioned by most Protestant churches for decades. It’s replaced by ‘cherish’. It’s kind of funny, in a dating forum like this, that folks would be unaware of what wedding vows even are! Not paying attention much at the weddings you attend, I presume? Ha!

MC Hammock

March 31st, 2011
9:28 am

This is the topic? I’ll come back later after the worm has turned….

SlimNumeroUno

March 31st, 2011
9:28 am

‘Not paying attention much at the weddings you attend, I presume?’

abc – we all just lie in wait for the reception food, alcoholic beverages and good music to dance to…everything else get’s lost in the wash lol

DC

March 31st, 2011
9:28 am

If she doesn’t obey, I just stick it in her butt. Works every time.

NY state of mind

March 31st, 2011
9:30 am

@The Clinton’s…I love it!

knockoutblonde

March 31st, 2011
9:30 am

LOL@DC, some women disobey just to go that route…..*WEG

Reggie

March 31st, 2011
9:31 am

Not gonna get into this one. This is just a bomb waiting to go off.

Celisea

March 31st, 2011
9:34 am

OMG who left the gate open? I’ll come back when the trolls simmer down.

redonthehead

March 31st, 2011
9:38 am

Good morning! I don’t think that OBEY should be in there, because it’s a partnership and that means equality. You don’t TELL your spouse what to do, you suggest or ask them to do something. OBEY is a little outdated. I like abc’s idea where OBEY is replaced with CHERISH. Much better!

kimmie

March 31st, 2011
9:39 am

Morning All!

Last time I checked the ACTUAL traditional marriage vows, as recited traditionaly at weddings, are not actually in the Bible. But folks love to take what IS in there and twist them up to suit their own agenda.

I went to a friends wedding years ago where the traditional vows were recited, but the pastor explained them to everyone in great detail. He even went so far as to talk about how when God created Eve, he took a bone from Adam’s ribcage – his SIDE. Meaning a woman was created to be by a man’s side. Not anything from his head meaning she’d be over him or from his foot, meaning she’d be under his foot. Let me tell you when this pastor broke it all down, it made perfect sense and didn’t have the woman feeling like she was signing up for a life of perpetual servitude but a partnership, yes with the man as the head of the household.

If you haven’t noticed, most modern pastors no longer pronounce the couple “man and wife”. They say “husband and wife”. I think that is a very good thing.

TenderRoni

March 31st, 2011
9:45 am

I”m with SCool- I have no problems with obey and the whole submissive thang.

@FYI thanks for posting the entire scripture- Its pretty plain as day when you read the entire scripture, and not look at just a few words and focus on one word.

kimmie

March 31st, 2011
9:49 am

Wise – What’s up with the “love, SERVE and obey”? I’ve never heard SERVE used in the vows.

abc is right, at most weddings I’ve been to they say love, honor and cherish. That should cover everything I think. I don’t think I’ll be less of a Christian if I use those words. Like I said before, the actual traditional vows recited are man-made.

SexyCool

March 31st, 2011
9:57 am

I think the real problem is not so much with the “words” in the vows, but the fact that most people do not respect the act of “vowing.” A vow is different from a promise.

And I really could go into a whole different direction with the conversation if I were to focus on the “three fold covenant” that is created between man, woman and God.

Dan - Simply....Superior

March 31st, 2011
9:59 am

@SC

Go for it.

DreamsMaterialize "Free Me-Lo"

March 31st, 2011
10:13 am

I don’t think that any of my friends included obey in there vows. Come to think of it, none of the last couple of weddings I attended included obey, which is probably a sign of the times.
Were they Christian weddings? The vows have a biblical precedent. So, why would Christians be opposed to using that word, unless they used “submit” instead?

DreamsMaterialize "Free Me-Lo"

March 31st, 2011
10:14 am

Oh, and on topic: She doesn’t have to obey me.

She better bow down though. j/k lol

Celisea

March 31st, 2011
10:18 am

Marriage was ordained by God and the vows created by him and due to him (by way of spouse). The act of it all is to live with one another and one another alone, to respect one another, performing to the best of your abilities. Because God knows man(kind) and all our quirks, ahead of anything he asks you to promise to be true to him/vows and if you do that, there’s no way you can mistreat, mislead or hurt one another. So, he said you wanna be together, do it right and make it honorable before me…hence (no fornicating, adultery, etc). Have at it but be prepared to do it until death do you part. Just know too you don’t get to have several of these…just the one you make the promise to. Oh and after ya’ll are done with your test run, you gotta answer to me for how well you performed…but over in the next life. So, in order to to keep it right, just know somebody’s got to lead. Given that I man the greater sex and ahead of the woman, he’ll take the lead. Woman, you’re significant as well…you can be his sidekick and helper. Oh and while ya’ll at in it have fun with it. I made each of of you unique and guess what you’ll figure out what goes where and that it feels good when you’re putting it there. Oh, if you put it there you’ll make babies. Don’t get crazy though when you see just how much fun you can have….stick to just the one you promised to be with. By the way those babies that result from the fun you’re gonna have, it’s your job to raise ‘em. Now, you go head and make a go at it, do it the way I laid out and you’ll make it.

Reggie

March 31st, 2011
10:19 am

As long as I’m addressed as “Sir”, “Your Highness” or “Master of the Universe”, I’m OK with everything else…..lol. Oh yeah, I forgot the standard WIFE uniform of a French Maid outfit, garters and high heels.

Celisea

March 31st, 2011
10:22 am

Point being, you can state the word obey or not….still held within the realms of taking vows and the concept of being married. God ain’t silly though like folks suppose he is. I agree with Fred (I think), don’t be such a ninny about the word. It’s only to set order and keep balance. Both folks can’t be the head and take the lead. Someone will have to step back…doesn’t make you less of a person or less significant. Only one though can lead and with that comes authority.

i'm swiss™ ("FREE ME.LO")

March 31st, 2011
10:25 am

Okay… I better just lurk on this topic…

Off topic: Don’t f__k with ‘Nique! :lol: