Bride-to-be's 'harsh' amendment to wedding vow sparks outrage on Reddit

Stock image of a wedding cake topped with bride and groom figurines and a knife cutting the cake between them
The woman is having misgivings about marriage before even walking down the aisle. Photo credit: Getty Images

While holy matrimony is rarely an easy ride, the premise of marriage is, on paper, quite simple: a vow to stay by your spouse's side for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do you part.

Of course, the rising rates of divorce show marriage isn't that straightforward - many a marriage bed is forsaken far, far before it has the chance to become a deathbed. 

After deciding to spend the rest of their life with someone, people typically enter a marriage with the intention of at least giving "till death do us part" a good crack - easier said than done, sure. But if you're having misgivings about your vow before even reaching the altar, maybe marriage isn't for you.

One woman facing this predicament shared her thoughts to the popular forum 'Am I the Asshole' last week - and was quickly rebuked by Redditors. 

Sharing her story anonymously to the subreddit - a space for people to air their moral dilemmas and pressing conundrums to the strangers of the internet - the woman explained that she intends to omit the traditional "in sickness and in health" from her vow as she "hates taking care of sick people".

"This is harsh but I hate taking care of sick people. My siblings and I were always taking care of our parents whenever they [got] sick and I just hate it, I'm sick of it and I hate feeling bound or obligated to take care of somebody," the woman wrote on the forum.

"I'm going to be married soon to my lovely partner and the best guy in the world. I'm so lucky and happy to have him by my side. 

"We have been thinking a little about our marriage vows. My fiancé is going to have a traditional Christian one: 'I take thee to be my wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God's holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith'.

"I'm going to have an identical one but without the 'in sickness' part - I'm going to replace it with 'in happiness'."

The woman admitted that while her partner is less than impressed with the amendment, she is already wedded to the idea. 

"My fiancé says he will not accept this and he is very mad at me - he is even rethinking the whole thing," she continued. 

"I just don't want to feel obligated to take care of [anyone] for years of my own and only life. I think he is being very unreasonable right now, it's just a marriage vow and I have the choice to change it."

In an update to her original post, the woman clarified that her stance is very dependent on which disease her husband-to-be is suffering with. "A cold or flu or some broken bones" is tolerable, she said.

"However, if it's chronic [or] severe and requires so much time and playing around (diets, restrictions, surgery risk, special conditions, frequent problems, etc) like… disabilities, cancer... then no. [I've] had enough of those in my life."

However, any hopes the woman may have had of being supported were dashed, with her standpoint widely met with outrage. Several questioned what the woman would expect from her partner if she became chronically ill. 

"I feel like the idea of being there for each other is a core part of marriage. It's not a marriage if you're not fully in it," one Redditor commented.

"I don't think I've ever seen someone try and sell 'fairweather commitment' before quite like this. Yes, I'll love and support you as long - as it's not too inconvenient for me," another observed.

"I think she should find someone who agrees with her viewpoint on this topic and stay unmarried in a long-term relationship with someone she's more compatible with," a third suggested.

"Taking care of your spouse is like the most basic requirement of marriage. If you can't do that, don't get married," a fourth added.

"Whether or not you say 'in sickness or in health', everyone's still going to think you're a dick if you leave. Not saying 'in sickness' doesn't stop you being a dick if it does happen," another said matter-of-factly.

Others were more understanding, with one offering: "I feel like people are being extremely unfair… Most people didn't have the experience of having to care for their chronically ill parents while they were growing up. 

"People don't understand but judge so harshly."