Working With Team to Prepare for Marriage  

This page is written for men preparing for marriage, but could equally well apply to women who feel strongly driven by the masculine archetypes.

Prerequisites

Someone using the following ideas should already be familiar with:

The Inspection Process

A man interested in getting married should present the idea to his team, and be open for a process of "clearing" or "inspection". This is a frank, unbiased question and discussion process that can last anywhere from a single hour or two, to many sessions over the course of several months.

The discussion is to be kept confidential to those involved, unless all agree it's all right for particular details to be shared, and is intended mainly to help the man contemplating marriage become confident that his decision is founded on diligent consideration and adequate clarity.

The questions asked should be as powerful as possible.

Based on discussions with many men I know who have participated in such a process, and witnessing the process myself several times, it is clear that the most valuable questions and comments come from those who have been married (which includes those whose marrage lasted, and those whose marriage failed or ended in divorce). However, unmarried men can also contribute, primarily in the area of "skeptic's advocate" questions.

Traditional Marriage

A man interested in proposing to a woman should initiate the inspection process within his own men's team.

Opinions vary on whether or not to bring the process to a larger group (such as a group of teams — a division). I personally believe such a discussion is not necessary — 6 to 8 men who know you well and are committed to your success should be more than adequate. However, if the larger group discussion is desired, a team-sized discussion should always be conducted first. (He might also have done one-on-one discussions before involving the team; see MCV14).

Gay Marriage

A gay man should also use the marriage inspection process prior to going forward with serious wedding plans. The fact that the relationship is a man-to-man relationship, and the possibility that both partners are on a men's team, presents unique opportunites and challenges, which I will summarize here:

The following two processes are suggested:

Two Men On Different Teams, or One Man Has No Team

The two men considering marriage should each appoint an agent who is on their own men's team (and if he has no men's team, selected from his closest trusted friends), and will be involved in both inspections. (Thus, there are two agents).

Each team conducts an inspection process (as described above) in which both agents are present. (If one man does not have a team, a group of his closest friends should be brought together for this purpose).

The inspection process itself is kept confidential, but the results (recommendations, certain unanswered questions and things to consider) are to be shared with the man's intended marriage partner.

Have followup discussions when deemed necessary. Continue until all outstanding issues are resolved.

If the Two Men are On the Same Team

Schedule two inspection process meetings.

At the first meeting, one of the men considering marriage should not be present. If desired (and this is recommended) he can attend another team meeting instead.

At the second meeting, the other man considering marriage is not present, and if desired attends another team meeting.

In both inspections, the discussion is kept confidential, but the results (recommendations, certain unanswered questions and things to consider) are to be shared with the other man considering marriage.

Have followup discussions when deemed necessary. Continue until all outstanding issues are resolved.

Bringing it to the Community

In rare cases, it will be clear that the team (or two teams, in the gay marriage case) cannot resolve the issues at hand, but perhaps a larger group can. In that case, it may be appropriate to conduct a marriage inspection in a larger group meeting.

In the event that the decision is made to go ahead with marriage, the announcement thereto, and sharing of the inspection experience, can be made by the team to the larger group at the next convenient opportunity.

The Ritual and Celebration

Inasmuch as the men's team has been an important part in ensuring the marriage is appropriate and successful, they should be involved in the wedding and celebration. See my page on weddings for some more about the community's role in marriage initiation ritual.


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This page was written in the "embarrassingly readable" markup language RHTF, and was last updated on 2017 Feb 02. s.11