The millennial generation is casual, critical and curious. We’re curious about the origins of many traditions our society still holds near and dear. We’re often critical of those origins when we look into them (it’s usually something sexist, gross or just plain upsetting). And finally, we decide to kick a lot of those traditions and become more casual. This is especially true when it comes to weddings and marriage. Today, a couple doesn’t have to get married to live together, have children, own property together or do a lot of other things that used to require a marriage license if they were going to get any societal respect. Today, it seems that if you still believe couples shouldn’t live together before marriage in America, you’re probably the odd one out. Some traditions are about to be the same thing the bride’s virginity is before her wedding day: non-existent. Here are marriage and wedding traditions today’s couples are putting an end to.

Buying a home right away

Who can afford it? Not many people in metropolitan areas. Homeowners under the age of 35 only make up 34.1 percent of all national homeowners. The overall home ownership rate in the country has dropped to one of the lowest rates in over 50 years. Millenials just aren’t buying homes at the rate previous generations did. It’s pretty common to find married couples still renting homes, and apartments at that.

Changing last names

The number of women holding onto their maiden name after marriage is on the rise. In fact, since the 1990s, the rate of women who don’t take their hubby’s last name has gone up by over 16 percent. When this tradition arose, almost no women had jobs. So their identities were closely tied to their partners’. But today, most women have careers and are known within those by their maiden names. Changing that would just be confusing.

Honeymooning right away

Remember when the entire wedding party would see the bride and groom off into their limousine, boat, or private jet so they could start their honeymoon that night? Couples are waiting to honeymoon now. Planning a wedding is absolutely exhausting and expensive. Most couples don’t have the energy or the savings to go on their honeymoon right after the wedding.

Having dad walk you down the aisle

With divorce rates high, a lot of people getting married today no longer still have their parents together. They may have been raised by a stepfather, a long-term boyfriend of their mother, an uncle, or even just a neighbor who was always there when they needed them. The perhaps bleak but true point is that, for many women, there are more significant men in their lives than their fathers today. For that reason, it’s not always the biological father walking the bride down the isle.

Spending the night before apart

Roughly over half married couples live together before getting married today. That means that staying apart the night before the wedding would require somebody to find someone to crash with, or get a hotel room. Some couples don’t want to make the effort or spend the money, so they’re together the night before the big day.

Throwing the bouquet

Enough with this idea that every woman in attendance at the wedding must be A) Desperate to find a man and B) Is naïve enough to think that catching a bouquet will somehow land her a man. There is something very anti-feminist about making a group of women jump all over each other at an object that symbolizes finding a marriage.

Asking for a hand in marriage

So many couples are living together before marriage, and also being together for a long time before marriage. Most of their soon-to-be in-laws already know and love their children’s significant others long before they even talk about getting married. Asking for a hand in marriage is just a formality at that point. It also has a rather dark history, originating at a time when women didn’t even have a choice in the matter of their marriage. Their dads basically sold them, or gave them away if it somehow improved the family’s status.

Getting married quickly

The average couple is waiting just shy of five years to tie the knot these days. There once was a time when your friends would assume your guy was never going to pop the question if he didn’t do it within a year! You can ask your mother about that.

Pre-marriage counseling

Again, couples are usually pretty entwined by the time they get married. If you can make it living together for several years, sharing a bathroom and shouldering the financial burden of your partner’s student debt (and having to live in a bad neighborhood because of it) you can get through anything. There isn’t anything some pre-marriage counselor can talk to you about that you haven’t already experienced.


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