Gypsy Creams

“marriage” Tag

Groovy Knits

Woman / 25 December 1965

This is fab, man. That black and white top is too much!

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From No-one to a Someone

Woman's Realm / 15 July 1961

The ‘Woman of many parts’ letter on here nearly broke my heart. What sort of messages must this woman have got from society to believe that she was a ‘no-one’ when she was a unmarried only child?

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Men Only / September 1951

I think the copywriters might have sunk several pints themselves in the sun, because this advert has many words, few of which make any real sense. The comment referring to ‘womanlike’ is very confused, and it’s hard to make out who is actually being sold to. Perhaps this is the sort of rambling mess these ad men offered their own wives when stumbling back from a long liquid lunch.

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Ring Selection the Romantic Way

Weekend / 30th January 1974

I present this with no comment, apart from noting that 100 Oxford Street is now occupied by Game, and the downstairs is, of course, the legendary 100 Club.

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You Big Fibber!

Woman's Weekly / 23rd April 1965

I have to say, I can’t help but be slightly impressed at people who find it easy to lie, as I’m not very good at it. Mary’s advice to this girl is quite canny, making her really think about what she’s saying. The stigma of divorce 45 years ago is clear from Jessie’s letter. I hope her final relationship continued to be happy, especially as her first husband’s divorce appears to have had nothing at all to do with her!

Incidentally, those who didn’t read my tweet or Facebook post may enjoy my recent appearance on the TATP (Talk About The Passion) podcast. I’m near the end, and that’s definitely not a fib.

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Puppy Love

Woman's Weekly / 6th June 1969

*emerges from bunker* Ah, peace at last. Anyway, I thought it was high time I treated you all to another Marryat. There’s a sweet letter about two youngsters in love, a woman who clearly wants backup from Mary to wave at her future son’s mum-in-law, but the most remarkable letter is tucked away, for some odd reason. Poor Joan is being threatened with eviction by her husband through no fault of her own, and although Mary tells her that she does have rights, as his wife, it’s strange to not have this as the lead letter. I hope Joan sorted out her life and got rid of her deadbeat husband, but it’s a telling sign that affairs and marriage breakup are nothing new.

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A Special Boyfriend

Woman's Weekly / 2nd April 1965

It’s our Mary again! Here she gives reasonable advice to a woman who is contemplating an affair with a married man (although note that she can’t resist implying that she’d be a ‘home wrecker’, as if the man involved had no responsibility at all), but what struck me was her reference to a ‘special boyfriend’ in the second reply.

This reminded me of my mother and aunt suggesting that I could go on dates when I considered myself to be in a committed long-distance relationship, and I think this change is probably down to the fact that relationships can now be serious without marriage getting involved. A generation or so ago, it was far more common to date (in theory, without sexual intercourse taking place), then getting engaged once you felt you’d found ‘the one’, whilst my generation haven’t really dated in that respect, as sex tended to happen at an earlier stage, meaning that a series of serious relationships are now more the norm.

Other letters of note here include the rather sweet enquiry about having youngsters around the farm (I would have loved to go on holiday at Mrs T’s place), and the mother who was clearly dying to address her son with the letters ‘B.A’. I presume he was the first in his family to get a degree!

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What’s Gone Wrong With My World?

Woman / 23rd December 1967

Here’s a treat: Marje Proops’ “Counselling in-the Round”. We’ve come in at the middle, as sadly I don’t have the issues either side of this one, but this is clearly something more ambitious than a problem page. Marje Proops’ advice is, in my view, spot on. This seems to be a classic case of what happens when a society insists marriage must accompany sex: two people get hitched whilst still riding on a wave of lust, and, as Marje says, either grow to love each other, or things turn sour soon after.

I hope this couple came to understand each other a little better as a result of this, especially as it’s hinted that the ‘other man’ isn’t really interested in sweeping this woman off her feet. Although this is clearly a bit of a sad case, it’s also a fascinating glimpse of a time when your attitude to BBC Two was an accurate marker of your class, and when those class distinctions actually mattered. Of course, there are still socio-economic groups in British society, and although the gap between the rich and poor is wider nowadays than it was even in 1967, there does seem to be a more fluid definition of class for the people in the middle, with fewer real markers of where you fit.

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Handy Andies

Woman's Realm / 18th March 1967

“No more washing and ironing for you”. Oh the romance. Why couldn’t he have washed his own snot-rags?

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Mary Marryat on Fatherhood

Woman's Weekly / 11th March 1967

Oh dear. I’m pretty sure Mary meant well, but advising a worn-out and demotivated young mother to expend even more energy trying to keep her spoilt brat of a husband happy? Sounds like a sure-fire recipe for depression to me. Woe betide that the husband actually *help* with the baby that he helped create and grow the fuck up, eh?

Also, we have another one of the mysterious replies without the original letter! No prizes for guessing what the ‘habit’ might be…

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