We've discussed marriage our entire 5 years together, but always come to the mutual conclusion that it isn't necessary.
Why not, you may ask? My question is: why so? For the financial reasons? Because society tells you that's what you're supposed to do? To make a man prove he loves you (even though many a marriage have failed regardless of that show of commitment)?
I feel like committed relationships are stronger than a lot of marriages are these days. In a committed relationship, neither party is legally bound to each other...they are bound by love and desire to be together. Either party could easily walk away at any time, without the legal hassle and dismantling of a "contract"...but they choose not to. Nobody in a committed relationship is stuck with a no longer desired spouse because they "can't afford a divorce". Nobody in a committed relationship is stuck in a loveless marriage forced to turn a blind eye to their spouse's indiscretions just because they "don't believe in divorce".
Look at the history of the conditions of marriage...who is or is not allowed to marry based on social class, race, sexual orientation, etc. I mean come on, if marriage is such a holy and god-given gift, why have humans put their own conditions on it?
Marriage always has been and always will be simply about money. A contract, if you will. Now instead of paying off your daddy for your hand with a few acres and a mule, your future husband is supposed to get a ring to show the world that he possesses you. And women have the audacity to bitch about the size, shape, type, and cost of their symbol of love? Please...it's simply about money. Sure, some marriages were based on love and have kept that basis alive, but plenty have dissipated because the focus was improper from the beginning.
I will never consider a marriage to carry more weight than a committed relationship. Ever.