Marriage? Not again, thanks!

:D Ok - I'm new here and am probably repeating a post that has been bashed to death in the past - I've had a look through the old posts and couldn't see anything . . . 8O

Can ANYONE tell me when it might happen that the Army drags itself out of the dark ages and starts to recognise long-term relationships for what they are. I am advised that in civvy law, a relationship that has endured a minimum of 6 months is labelled "long-term" and basically, the partners are treated for all wants and purposes as married. Recent changes (such as allowing unmarried partners of servicemen who are killed to claim death benefits) are indeed a step in the right direction - but that's all it is - a step. How about putting on the reeboks, installing an escalator and getting a "wiggle" on?! :lol:

I understand that if the Army was to suddenly say, "Crack on, chaps!" there would be a massive rush for things like MQs etc and the extra 3.x billion pounds allocated to the defence budget this year would not be enough to cater for the mass of disturbance allowance claims and the like. However . . .

My girlfriend and I have been together for over 3 years now. I am sick to death of people telling me to "get married, cos it's easier, innit!" NOOOO! If I wanted to get married, I would do - and it wouldn't be to make things "easier" - no, it would be for the good old fashioned reasons. (What, like dinner on the table etc. . . sorry, I digress . . .)

My point is that service personnel in similar situations such as mine are almost being discriminated against because we are not married. I have read articles and letters from others around the service community on a similar subject and I know that I am not alone when I tell the "pro-marriage gang" to get off my back for a while. Even an RSM told me to get married!!! I mean, really - what kind of counselling is that?! I hear you suck your teeth at my use of "discrimination" and probably with good reason. However, that is what I call it when I am told that a job vacancy for a dependant (which has been available for over a year now) cannot be filled by my suitably qualified "life partner" (as the civvies call it) because we do not have the relevant paperwork (ie marriage certificate). :x

Now, before the lobbyists get on my back, I am NOT trying to "dumb down" the institute of marriage - I am all for it. Personally, I've tried it and it didn't work for me (or another 16 personnel in my Sqn in the last 6 years). Next time (once bitten, twice shy), I want to be sure that I am making the right decision and not just taking advice from a more senior chappie who just wants the problem to go away (regardless of how well meaning he or she may be trying to appear to be).

So . . . the question again . . . when are we going to be treated a little better than the social leppers we seem to have become? :D
I think the main trouble is that marriage can be defined by a legal 'contract'. If you are in a relationship, you are either married or you are not. The people who give you quarters, sort out your pay, give you your allowances have a bit of paper to say yes or no. If you are in a long term relationship and aren't married, there's nothing on paper to say that's the case. A civvy firm are quite happy with the idea of partners as they are just jobs. They don't have to provide housing, schooling and move you, your family and your quarter around the world on posting.

A marriage certificate and divorce papers are the only thing stopping the 'Yess we are, no we're not, yes we are' that sometimes goes on in some long term relationships and possibility of the 'lets shack up, call ourselves a couple and get out of the block' lobby. I know that sometimes goes on within marriage, but at least they are 'legally' married.

If you want the 'pluses' that a long term relationship gives you without the legal commitment of marriage, you are going to have to be dissapointed with not having the 'pluses' that a marriage certificate gives you. If you are happy, and think you are going to stay together, why not get married? It's only a little bit of paper..... and a bit of commitment. If you're not? Why ask the question in the first place?
On a separate but connected note, advertising a job for a "dependant" and refusing to offer the job to someone otherwise properly qualified but without the marriage certificate is DIRECT discrimination and completely illegal. Your partner, if she can prove (in writing, ideally) that she was refused the job on the basis of her marital status, would have strong grounds for compensation in an Employment Tribunal.

Meanwhile, expect the Armed Forces to follow the government's lead on this one. As long as the Forces can legally get away with giving marriage benefits only to those in a legally recognized relationahip, they will. It's simply too much trouble and not enough benefit to change things.

Just a thought, how can you prove the length of a relationship compared to marriage?

Im saying if the rules where changed to support "partners" (common law wives/husbands) what is there to stop someone with a 2 week relationship applying for a MQ? compared to 6 months or 5 years. Also couldnt this be abused as a route to disturbance allowance etc?

People get really upset about this, but like PP said if you are indeed commited what is the real issue of having a legal document to back it up?
Not getting away from the point here, why are we expecting the cash anyway. I think what was initially asked was why should he get married when he does not want to. Good point, if an individual was to want to live in cheap accomodation ( a Qaurter) then why not. As long as everyone pays there way, the allowances should be the same all around (if moving house to house not room to room) as the costs can be excessive. These costs are the same if you have a house on your own or with a partner. This is not including kids which is slightly different. Perhaps the Army wants people to get married to get them out of the block!!!! And the RSM's advice to "get married" well hes a co** isn't he? If no accomadation was provided and we had to find are own way it would solve this argument!

Another penny pinching rule of the Army I'm afraid...
Why does the army not give a partner wife status?

That is what it does. Did you not know this when you joined? Did you disregard it when you entered into the partnet only not spouse relationship? Can you confirm you or her would never say 'I'm sorta married - don't post me there please'

Marriage is like pregnancy - you can't be just a bit married and cherry pick the good bits off the cake.

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