Why Strippers at a Bachelor/Bachelorette Party Set the Wrong Tone for Marriage

4 Oct

I found the below article yesterday, and felt so validated.  This article is a great, reasonable discussion about the stripper “tradition” at bachelor parties.  I have added some not-so-reasonable, emotion-filled commentary of my own in pink…  Sorry in advance, but I need to get it out.

What Happens in Vegas does NOT stay in Vegas: A night of strippers may start your marriage on rocky ground

Published on September 8, 2012 by Dr. Shauna H. Springer

Despite the recent ads on TV and the age old saying, what happens in Vegas does NOT stay in Vegas. If you know that your partner would be upset to hear that you had strippers at your bachelor/bachelorette party, this decision will affect your marriage.

I’m not speaking from any personal pain on this issue but from the distress of many a newlywed I’ve counseled who gets wind of his or her partner’s “totally wild” last night of freedom. Witnessing this time after time in my role as a marital counselor, I’ve often wondered whether there could be any wedding-related tradition more stupid than a bachelor or bachelorette night filled with strippers.

Where in the world did we get this tradition, and how has it persisted for so long?

If your goal is to kick off your marriage in a veil of secrecy and suspicion, a night of carnal pleasure with strangers would be a wonderful way to achieve it. (Thank you!)

If your goal is to undermine your partner’s sense that you only have eyes for him or her when he or she most wants to bond with you, then a trip to a few strip clubs ought to do the trick nicely.  (That’s exactly what it does.  Why am I accepting that?  His behavior shows that I don’t matter, my feelings don’t matter, and he wasn’t concerned about being close to me in a time where we should have been the closest.)

If you’d like your future spouse to see that after all that practice in high school, you still haven’t figured out how to stand up to peer pressure, then by all means, get wrangled into going to a strip club, and deflect your partner’s pain by blaming it on one of your friends (“My best man sprung that lap dancer on me unexpectedly, and she was grinding on me before I even realized what was happening”). (Really?!)  (Again….  REALLY?!?!?!?!?  I KNOW he can’t stand up to peer pressure…  How sad.  How sickening.  And what a completely bullshit excuse for a grown man!  He grinded on strippers because he wanted to – simple as that.  If it was transsexuals, shooting heroin, skydiving or anything else he DIDN’T want to do, then he wouldn’t have!)

If you want to send your beloved a message that you are entering the marriage with mixed feelings and a sense of loss, then by all means, you should participate in a custom that suggests you need to have one last go at sexual intimacy with a stranger because you’ll be deprived of such opportunities in the future. What a beautiful way to herald the sacred vows between yourself and the self-professed love of your life!  (“… one last go at sexual intimacy with a stranger…”  I’m trying not to throw up because that’s exactly what it was.)

I know that some people are more philosophical than I am about this whole stripper thing, so I’ll even take that into account. Overlooking the possibility that you could be one of the rare people who is not at all bothered by the thought of some random human potentially pressing his or her naked sexual parts against your future spouse, one question you still may want to ask is “If I told you that I have a problem with strippers at your bachelor or bachelorette party, how would you respond?”  (Well…  It wasn’t theory.  I did tell him that…)

This very telling question allows you to learn some very important things about a potential future spouse, things like…

Will you hear me and understand my concerns even if you don’t feel the same way?  NO!!!!!

Do you agree that, within reason, when one of us has a problem, it’s a problem we both need to address?  Obviously NOT!

Can I depend on you to stand up for us even if you get ragged on by some of your friends sometimes?  Absolutely, positively NO!!!!  NEVER!  (Gagging, bile rising in my throat…)

Can I depend on you to protect what we have and to treat me with respect whether I’m in the room or 3,000 miles away?  No.  I can’t.  Never could.  That simple statement is heartbreaking.

Am I, and are we, now your top priority?  Definitely not. 

Are you open to influence when I tell you about something that causes me pain?  The answer to this was obvious on so many occasions in so many ways.  Why was I too blind to see that?

Don’t get me wrong, I really like the idea of a Bachelor or Bachelorette party. In fact, my husband and I like it so much that we both took a long weekend away with our friends before we got married. When his friends have gotten married, he’s joined them for camping trips, weekends in cabins on various lakes, or time spent exploring a new city. Bachelor and Bachelorette events for us are an opportunity to spend quality time with our closest friends before the biggest transition in our lives to that point. They are a time to reflect on and get excited about what we are both about to do – a wonderful part of a uniquely memorable rite of passage.  (It’s what they should be.)

Would there be any downside to eliminating the sex-games-with-random-strangers part of this tradition? Not for us, and not for any other couples who want to start off strong by honoring the spirit of their commitment to the one they love.  (Sex-games-with-random-strangers…  What a great heading for what happened.  Gagging again.)

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10 Responses to “Why Strippers at a Bachelor/Bachelorette Party Set the Wrong Tone for Marriage”

  1. Jeninthekeys August 24, 2016 at 3:00 pm #

    I love this article and agree with you 100% If you feel like you need to seek out attention/ affection / or just sexual pleasure from someone other than your soon to be spouse… Houston we have a problem!

  2. The Dark Byronic Hero May 15, 2016 at 2:02 pm #

    Very beautiful article, i know how you feel i grew up around cheaters specifically those who thought cheating at bachelor and bachelorette parties was okay to cheat at, or hen and stag nights as they’re known over here anyway, thank you for the article as i said i knew these types growing up like my mother was one who also abused me and allowed a male stripper friend beat me up so she could masturbate to it and now i live in perpetual fear that if i get into a relationship she’ll cheat on me with one of these guys, and its made me very ill sadly but as i said thank you for the article it eased my a little, i also wanted to add i never understood the need for a last night of freedom, if you need one dont get married, marriage is no prison, its a liberation of love, a beautiful union, so if i sound soppy but this is what i believe to be true.

  3. Imperfect October 5, 2012 at 2:14 am #

    Great read. I’m actually headed to a bachelorette party this weekend. Pretty sure there won’t be strippers there (thankfully), but we are taking a pole dancing class.

    I have only ever been to one bachelorette party where there were strippers. Honestly, it was more about being silly and laughing with girlfriends than it was about anything sexual. As innocent as it seemed at the time, it’s definitely not the kind of thing I want to participate in now.

    • beautifulmess7 October 5, 2012 at 7:48 am #

      The funny thing is, I am headed to a bachelorette party next weekend. It is actually an entire weekend thing. I committed before I knew any plans. Then I got the itinerary and saw the first night a strip club/ male revue show was on the agenda. Even though I had already taken off Friday, I told them that I will not be able to make it that day/night.

      It is not a tradition that I am comfortable with on either side – male or female. The maid of honor said this entire thing is a surprise to the bride and she doesn’t know any details. I also really don’t like that part of the tradition. If you subscribe to the notion that this is his/her “last hurrah” or time to really connect with friends, WHY would we not want them giving input or knowing what will happen??? Shouldn’t the bride and groom decide what they want to do?

      What makes the situation next weekend even more complicated is that the groom is one of the people who was at my husband’s bachelor party/ strip club extravaganza. He is having a bachelor party in New Orleans with as much raunch as possible, from what I understand. I am so glad my husband chose not to go. In light of everything I just discovered, I’m not sure how comfortable I feel about their friendship and the wedding.

  4. Our Journey After His Affair October 4, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

    Love, love, LOVE this article!!!

    I just don’t understand why some people think that getting married equates having no kind of life or freedom anymore…?? When you make the commitment to be monogamous is the moment you decide to surrender your “freedom” anyways. And of course, no one is holding a gun to your head….if it’s that important to you DON’T GET MARRIED!!!! Don’t commit. If eternal monogamy scares the hell out of you, then it is most certainly not time for you to pretend that it doesn’t.

    Mike and I both had an aversion to this “tradition.” We think alike when it comes to our stance on it and that is why we decided that if we were going to have a celebration, it would be together. But we chose against it because we saw no point in celebrating our last days unmarried. The wedding would be a celebration of our next step in life. We felt that having a celebration for anything other than that at that time would be silly. Especially if it’s a party to “mourn” the loss of your old ways/life.

    These are probably the same kinds of people who use any reason to celebrate as a way to get wild and drink and do drugs or whatever.

    Sorry, I don’t waste my efforts on behaving immaturely.

    • beautifulmess7 October 4, 2012 at 12:24 pm #

      I feel the same way. I didn’t have a bachelorette party. I did have a nice dinner with my Mom, sister, step-sisters, and one of my husband’s sisters a week before the wedding. It was really just a nice, quiet dinner in a great restaurant. There were a few tiny gifts (I did NOT want to use the wedding as an excuse to throw 15 parties where I expected gifts, like some people do now). I didn’t even know about it… it was just a small little thing to make me feel special.

      • Our Journey After His Affair October 4, 2012 at 12:41 pm #

        Right!! There’s nothing wrong with a nice little get-together to talk about your wedding. Like you said, people often misuse these major turning points as a way to behave wildly or to seek gifts or whatever.

        • beautifulmess7 October 4, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

          You are absolutely right! The committment happens before the marriage – at least in about 99% of the cases. Very, very few people in modern society get married to someone without first having an exclusive committment.

          My take on celebrating around the time of the wedding is the same as yours – we are celebrating our marriage and a new life together. So to set the stage for that by having several naked women rubbing all over you is not only counter-productive but also insulting.

          I feel sick about it, especially being lied to for so long.

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  1. The Bachelorette Party « The Twilight Fun Blog - October 5, 2012

    […] Why Strippers at a Bachelor/Bachelorette Party Sets the Wrong Tone for Marriage (beingabeautifulmess.wordpress.com) […]

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