Its called eloping. This means you’re getting married suddenly’ secretively.
Reasons for running away to get married include being prevented to get married because of age, skin color, or parental non-consent. Eloping also entails running away to a state where blood tests are not required.
One reason that couples cite for their desire to elope is to be wed in private minus the hoopla of an extravagant wedding. When they realize that people other than themselves are calling the shots for their future wedding, they decide to escape to save their own skins.
Planning to Run Away to Get Married?
Planning to run away to get married is like planning to get married the usual way, except that this time you’re doing it ‘incognito’. If you decide eloping is the best solution then some planning is called for. We generally don’t recommend it because it’s always good to share something special with at least a few friends and family.
The first step is to clearly establish that running away to get married is a mutual decision, and that no one is forcing it on the other. We can’t emphasise this enough. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where your current better half is itching to get married secretly because of a wish to escape from a previous marriage or a criminal conviction.
The decision to elope is not done on a whim. It’s not like saying, ‘hey, let’s drive 1000 miles today and see where that will take us.’ This is a temporary adventure a fling but eloping is an event you’ll have to live with the rest of your life. If you don’t know your better half well enough background ambitions schooling and career credit history eloping can be a very messy undertaking.
Second, eloping does not mean you have to exclude your special friends. You can still elope with only a handful of people you choose and have a simple ceremony in city hall. In some parts of the US and Canada, eloping to get married is possible only if you can produce a marriage license and two witnesses.
The third step is to fix your budget and then pick a place to get married. Find out if the state or province you want to get married in requires blood tests or a waiting period. As you know, blood tests are required in a few areas to make sure that one of you is not suffering from a venereal disease. The county clerk will inform you if these are required.
You will need an officiate. The officiate should be able to issue the marriage license as well.
Talk has it that Las Vegas is a popular destination for eloping couples. So is Arizona. Some couples have even eloped to Europe. Be careful though about being wed on foreign soil. The marriage licence, if obtained in another country, may not be recognized or accepted by your own country. Check this little detail out.
A story in a celebrity gossip magazine said that British TV stars Ashley Jensen and Terence Beesley were wed in secret in the forest of Big Sur, California. They said they decided to elope because they didn’t want to worry about napkins. On hand assisting the couple was the family dog who also served as ring-bearer. The minister supposedly took care of all other arrangements. A marriage in a jiffy, by the looks of it.
Does Eloping Run in Families?
We have no scientific proof to say yes, but you sometimes wonder. We don’t want to make it sound like eloping is an incurable disease, but if you seriously think about it, we all like to run away once in awhile. Our parents may have done it as well. After all, eloping is defined two ways: one – to run away from one’s spouse with a lover or to run away to get married in secret; two – to slip away or to escape.
Rebecca T. Godwin’s story has nothing to do with running away to get married. She just ran away to go to the dance with her boyfriend. She was fifteen then, the story goes, and her father had nailed her windows shut so she couldn’t escape. He was angry with her for going to the circus with her gang instead of staying home to do school work so he grounded her with nails on her sill! Somehow, she managed to pry open the windows and she jumped right out and headed for the dance. On her way to the dance, there was a strong downpour that got her soaking wet. She couldn’t show up in the dance looking like she had just gotten out of the pool with her fancy clothes and spiked heels so she went back home. Unable to get back in through her window, she rang the doorbell. Her father came to the door and gave her a tongue lashing.
Now this story would be any other story, but there’s some irony attached to it. Fifty years later, Rebecca herself had to nail down the windows of her father’s bedroom in the care facility because he had a record for escaping, and the staff were at their wit’s end trying to pin him down.
Going back to the question about eloping running in families: well, if you have enough stories similar to Rebecca’s to create an anthology, you could say that elopement does run in families. If you did some running away while you were younger and then decades later struggle to keep one of your parents from escaping their health care facility, then it’s like going full circle. Believe it or not, there’s such a thing as the National Institute for Elopement Prevention and Resolution which was established in 2001. It’s based in Topeka, Kansas. Their mission? To help family members understand the psychology of elopement and why patients escape from a health facility.
Essentially, therefore, elopement can mean something else, and just does not mean running away to get married. In fact, if there was a need to establish such an institute like the Kansas one, it probably indicates that eloping from one’s caregivers takes on more significance than eloping to get married.
Not that we’re suggesting that you plan on running away twice in your life: the first time to get married (stage 1) and the second to escape from your health institution while in your golden years (stage 2).
We stumbled upon a book called the Elopement Everything Book: Avoid the Wedding Chaos (2004) written by Shelly Hagen. It talks about how to avoid the hassles and time-consuming logistics of planning a big, organized event. It shows couples how to say NO to an extravaganza that their parents want to stage. Couples who don’t want to dole out chunks of money just for a wedding may find this book helpful. It provides tips on passports and marriage licenses, budget planning, breaking the news to friends and family, throwing a small party when they return and settling into married life. And where can you get a copy? We saw it on Amazon.com. Do read the customer reviews first.