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Woman marries herself in full wedding ceremony

It had all the elements of a wedding — the bride, white dress, diamond ring, guests, seating arrangements, professional photographer — the only thing missing was the groom, and not by accident.

On Nov. 16, 30-year-old office worker Chen Wei-yih married the love of her life — herself.

The Taipei City-based woman, who is no longer single by her own admission, wanted to show other ladies who have hit their thirties without a manifested prince charming that they are not failures.

“You must learn to love yourself before you can love others,” said Chen, who also plans to embark on a solo honeymoon to Australia after she quits her job as a study-abroad coordinator to the land Down Under.

Self-help platitudes aside, Chen explained that when a woman in Taiwan enters her thirties, getting married and having children becomes the main focal point among concerned family, relatives and friends, making a single, independent woman feel like a failure if she has none of those things.

Chen explained that although many people freely express their love for others through flowers, chocolates and expensive dinners, they are less inclined to pamper and shower the same love on themselves. By the same token, expressing your love for a man through marriage and a huge wedding banquet should be something you're willing to do for yourself. Self-marriage seemed like the logical solution, she concluded.

The self-betrothed woman said it was her wish that other single women will learn to self-love through her lavish example. The Oct. 16 ceremony rivaled that of couple nuptials the world over, involving a full white dress, wedding invites, bridesmaids, groomsmen and 30 guests who showed up at the Taipei City banquet hall Chen reserved. The newly wedded lady even created a Facebook fan page (http://www.facebook.com/onlywedding) that encouraged fellow women to have “as much fun as I did.”

Making it clear that she has had several boyfriends and relationships, some of which almost led to the altar, Chen described herself as neither unmarriageable nor against marriage to another person. She also considers this marriage non-binding, meaning she is free to marry someone else but if that opportunity does not arise, at least she made the commitment to forever love herself.

October 19, 2010    johnny.brian@
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
October 19, 2010    paradoxcc@
That is just sad, she IS a failure...
October 20, 2010    typical@
just plain pitiful. role for women in today's Taiwan society just took a few steps back.
October 20, 2010    shinwaye@
I see her stand is not to literally marry herself, but as ceremony to stand out in public to represent that it's not what a marriage that makes a woman complete, but it's in knowing how to love herself and accept herself fully even when no man comes to fill that space. I just hope this will not mislead people, since her intention is just to relieve women from the worries and pressures of having to marry when one enters her 30s. In the society today, as we witness, majority of women play various roles at same time (i.e. wife, househelp, babysitter, mother, bread-winner) and it's not easy for us women to cope with the stresses from this present age and lifestyle especially as we enter into marriage.
October 21, 2010    hetoon@
Loving thyself can be demonstrated in many forms, but to do so in the context of a wedding ceremony is a joke. However, she has made her statement, though at some costs. Perhaps it was a calculated cost in that she could, in her conscious or unconscious way, be saying to men out there that I am available even at past 30.
She is, by my reckoning, not in want of a psychological assessment, but some good guidance from true friends and supportive family members.
October 23, 2010    linds@
Crazy? no. Brave? very. She has knowingly allowed herself to be laughed at by many just to prove she is not going to be made feel like a failure just because the right man hasn't proposed to her yet. Would I do it? I'd like to think I had that much courage, but deep in my heart, know that I don't. The other thing is, every brave and outgoing man in and out of China now want to know more about her. Smart girl. I bet she finds Mister Right within the next year or two.
October 23, 2010    oceanbreeze626262@
I love myself, I am not married. I love myself, I am not rich. I never really understood the marriage thing. Whilst I think it is a good thing and if I find the right person I will marry but using marriage as a status symbol means you are looking for happiness on the outside. Happiness comes from within. This woman didn't need to do that and accept her self worth is not reliant on externals.
October 26, 2010    thelocksmithuk@
What a hoot! At last - someone who isn't afraid to go against all the predictable and moronic criticism from our modern society (like a lot of the comments on this page). She tried to find a partner and it didn't work, so why not indulge herself? Hell, even I'd offer to marry her if I wasn't already married to my bicycle.
October 27, 2010    johnny.brian@
Something serious wrong with Taiwanese women. Few years earlier, a woman kissed 100 Frenchmen. Recently, a young lady who is unemployed going around the island for 10,000 hugs.... Now, self-married??? Pity! Suffering from cruelty of pressured modern society.

PS: Not all Taiwanese ladies are like that. Majority of ladies here are very beautiful and willful.

at linds@.....I bet she finds Mister Right within the next year or two...... Can she file for a divorce if Mr. Right comes along?
October 31, 2010    thebeluga@
Clearly those of you who are hating on Chen haven't read the article. The marriage is about sending a message to her friends and family and ultimately herself that it's okay if she ends up alone. She needs to love herself before she loves others. This is an important message to people of any culture, especially in the US (where I'm from) where over half of marriages end in divorce.

Best wishes to the bride, may she have a happy life, with or without a companion.
October 31, 2010    thebeluga@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
October 31, 2010    saraburgess1@
This woman is either very brave or self-indulgent; I suspect it is both, and I admire the courage she is showing in standing up publicly against the expectations of her society. I'm amazed at how judgmental other readers are!
(P.S If you didn't catch on, the marriage isn't legal)!
October 31, 2010    queens12@
Lol I can't believe some of you are really taking this seriously, critiques, insults and all that. This is clearly just something rebellious she did to probably piss off her relatives and parents. A wedding 'party' with close friends, traveling plans, and obviously silly fun. If she can afford it, why not? Some people bottle up their disagreements not because they feel like it, but because they're too scared to show it. All I want to say to her is good job, you have haters only because you stood up creatively for something you believed in.
November 1, 2010    mmm-nikuman@
...Um, Yikes. I have to give her kudos for actually going through with this, and her loving herself, and true happiness comes from acceptance and etc.

But you wouldn't be so accepting in the next decade. I mean, picture being 45 years old, with all your friends probably married with children... I mean come on! They have their own lives! You'd die from sheer boredom! I say adopt and have hobbies will do good.

Sure, loving yourself gives you happiness. But in my opinion, the happiness of others is what truly gives you happiness. A family is what gives true happiness (and I'm old fashioned, but with both a mommy and daddy). So...no for me.

November 2, 2010    jzephyr74@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
Did you ever think maybe she doesn't worship your God? Only a bit over half the people in the world are Christian, Jewish, or Muslim.
November 2, 2010    smmindssister@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
I'm sure that your "god" or whatever probably wouldn't like you judging other people. So.... yeah.. you are a failure.
November 9, 2010    johnny.brian@
 
thebeluga@ wrote:
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
I did not miss any point, my dear. And I knew she is trying to establish herself and I will leave her alone. BTW, is there any case in the US where any man or woman married him/herself? I guess there is....
November 9, 2010    johnny.brian@
 
thebeluga@ wrote:
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
Clearly, she doesn't worship my God. Only few persons in the world did this and possibly they made it to headline news. Congratulation!
November 9, 2010    johnny.brain@
 
thebeluga@ wrote:
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
Are you not afraid of God? Yes, I undergo many failures in my life, and learn from my mistakes. I know it is not good to judge other people or I will be judged. It is just a comment.
November 11, 2010    hungryman@
I wonder if she would consider having an affair. Why doesn't the China Post have pictures?

November 15, 2010    spider88@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
Johnny.brian, why in the world should a psychologist waste their time on someone so ordinary? Leave their time open for sociopaths, schizophrenics, those with bipolar disorder, and the depressed. So arrogant of you to think that mental health workers exist to evaluate anyone who disagrees with you.
November 15, 2010    carltanong@
 
thebeluga@ wrote:
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
I agree with johnny brian.

Perhaps spider88 mental disorder is much more serious than this woman.
November 17, 2010    carltanong@
@thebeluga
So sorry. My comment is intended for spider88. Maybe the spider web blinded me. Accept my apology.
November 27, 2010    weightowater@
typical@ wrote:
just plain pitiful. role for women in today's Taiwan society just took a few steps back.
You're absolutely wrong. I know many a women who are inspired by this.
December 25, 2010    platinumbadasx@
Very strange... but in a way, showing women the right way and to follow their OWN wishes. Everybody isn't going to understand it, but there are many who do. It's complicated, but then again it's not.
January 2, 2011    skigabe@
Just when you though the world couldn't get any stranger.
Which state will legalize same-person marriage??!!
Theoretically, she's actually married to a plastic object [deleted]. I could marry myself and have a relationship with her, but then we would both be unfaithful to ourselves.
January 15, 2011    playitloud1738@
You go girl :)

While I personally wouldn't go this far, I applaud her for the message she's putting out there to other women. Every girl should learn to love and accept herself before she should expect a man to do the same. Women should also realize that focusing on yourself sometimes isn't a bad thing. You'll go crazy if you neglect yourself in favor of others 24/7.
January 28, 2011    clifton_junkins@
 
thebeluga@ wrote:
There are other concepts of marriage out there outside of the Christian faith. Marriage was around long before Jesus was thought to exist. You clearly missed what she was trying to establish with this union to herself.
Actually, the Christian faith is rooted in the Jewish faith, and marriage as accepted in Christianity starts in the book of Genesis, accepted by Jews and Christians alike. That type of marriage has been around for a much longer time. For the record, she made a non-binding marriage with herself, essentially a civil union with herself. Just ask yourself this question, were there any other ways that she could have shown the world of her self worth?
February 12, 2011    apriljp18@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
God has nothing to do with a marriage.
You don’t go to god for a license, and when u get a divorce you don’t ask god to divorce you.
It’s a legal contract between 2 entities, that’s why the court gets involved.
February 13, 2011    helen.white70@
Well done! Marriage is great if that's what you want. There are many who marry for a variety of reasons and not always for the right ones! 'Conditioning' has a lot to answer for. I think Chen Wei-yih has an audacious sense of humor and I am impressed by her originality. In marrying herself she has made a statement to the world that being single and happy with herself is just as worthwhile, good and valid as being married to someone. Marriage is overrated and frankly an outdated concept. People should be free NOT to marry if that is their wish and be respected for their decision whatever the reason.
February 24, 2011    yuropel@
If you think she's got mental disorders, or pitiful, or failure, who cares? She is happy. She did what others don’t have the nerve to do - and that's to give your self a fab wedding even without a partner. Wedding is in every girl's dream. Just because u can’t find anyone marriageable doesn’t mean u should deprive your self of that amazing feeling.

God has nothing to do with this. The same thing that god does not have anything to do with divorce, or being a battered wife, or a having a useless husband.
February 24, 2011    finemando@
Well, frustrations can lead to anything. On the other hand she is like cleaning her shop for customers to notice that she is available.
February 25, 2011    magooslum@
From what was reported in the story, it sounded like she wanted to silence the prejudice that not being married at her age meant that she was an "old maid" and ultimately not fulfilling her duty to procreate. It is another strike against Taiwan's low birth rate which makes one wonder... are the sexes having identity issues because we send our kids off to school in unisex uniforms? Probably a good percentage of the boys don't know the difference between male and female. The girls grow up with little hope of being noticed nor someone who would care for them. So they wear micro-mini skirts and high heels (mucklucks in the winter) in hope that someone will notice.

Maybe if more of us guys would treat women like ladies, share equally in the family responsibilities, and care for the children too, someone like Mrs. Chen wouldn't have thought to resort to such action. Role modeling love and affection to our kids is likely to help the next generation. That and making sure that boys treat girls with respect in the school while they are growing up... so that they can experience mutual respect early on. From what I have seen most younger boys and girls are rough-housing instead of holding doors open for each other.

To those who speak of God and marriage, perhaps God waits to see how we do and then smiles on us when we do well. If that means matrimony between a man and woman then you can be sad for Mrs. Chen but I bet your god wouldn't be happy for your anger toward her. So what can you do to improve your society... so that the next Ms. Chen finds the love of her life... in someone other than just herself. ?

Get the point? Where do you fit into the solution because being cynical isn't doing anyone any good.
February 26, 2011    marialsy@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
This woman is only another desperate for attention person. You can be happy without making all this scene (which is usually fake, that woman is really desperate for attention). I've been living in this island for so many years, lots of people are trying to get noticed no matter what. Just wait and someone will appear in the news marrying his/her pet dog or cat and giving a lame excuse to appear in the news.
February 27, 2011    rondh69@
So, if she has sex with someone other than herself, is she fooling around?
April 21, 2011    Fuckyou@
johnny.brian@ wrote:
Something with our society these days. No one is married to own self. In God's eyes, marriage is the union of Man and Woman. This woman is desperate and gone into mental problem. A woman at any age, can be married. She needs psychological evaluation.
I am sorry that you and all of the responders, who think Chen Wei-yih is an idiot, cannot comprehend what an incredibly courageous statement she made through this act.
She is in a society where too much of a person's, especially a women's, worth is placed on relationships and marriage. By doing this she is going against the majority--even all of Taiwan, all of Chinese tradition, and the world. She is trying to say that happiness is not in finding your significant other--it is really up to the you.
Those of you who say that she represents how society is going downhill, is stupid, just an attention seeker, and so forth are part of the majority of those who will never find happiness because you are all waiting for someone to give it to you. One word: Pathetic
April 22, 2011    ruebreteuil@
How courageous?
It was just a self-promotion stint...
If she was truly in peace with herself, not feeling pressure from family and society, then she would have rather donated the money she spent on this ridiculous fake extravaganza to charities, to kids who can't go to school, or can't have drinkable water...
The self-esteem reward would have been 1000 times more, but of course, nobody speaks about anonymous donations...,,
September 8, 2011    janenepayne@
I think it is fabulous. It is her life. Why is it that when anyone does anything out of the norm they are automatically outcaste as crazy or an idiot? This is one marriage that is going to last - to herself. So if she wants to do this good on her. I would rather go to a wedding of a celebration of the love of oneself than to a wedding of two people where divorce rates are high. Obviously having a ceremony does not make you love yourself but clearly it is a ceremony of the love she has for herself.
February 17, 2013    humantimelordhybrid@
She has a valid point - life's too short to be in a miserable marriage that will end in tears to some boorish git! I mean why marry? I’d rather remain singe!
July 29, 2014    russel.schwartz@
People writing hate things don't seem to get it. She needed more love, not cruel thoughts. Likely those who wrote the few mean things know almost nothing of how sweet a woman she is.

She is smart and did well allowing herself marriage in the future (stating marriage to herself was not legally binding allowing later marriage) to someone who values her close to as much as she values herself.

Bravo. Encore when she finds man who values her greatly.

If she reads this, she might please ask if I am still available. : )

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