After her hugely successful book, Eat, Pray, Love, was published, Elizabeth Gilbert settled into a lovely life with the man she met on that personal journey. Both she and the guy, known as Felipe in the book, had been married and divorced before, and they told themselves they weren’t going to get married again; just promising commitment to one other was enough. That is, until the U.S. Department of Homeland Security decided not to let Felipe, a Brazilian with an Australian passport, back into the country after a trip overseas. Sure, the two could have settled down elsewhere, but they wanted to live near family and friends, so the only real option for getting Felipe permission to reenter the United States was for he and Elizabeth to get married.
While they waited for immigration to look into their case — Felipe needed to secure a fiancé visa and wouldn’t be able to return to the States until he was given one — the two bided their time by traveling around the world together, living as inexpensively as possible in Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, Elizabeth looked into this thing called marriage. What was the big deal about it? Why didn’t many last? How has it changed over the years, and what does that mean for us? Beyond the obvious questions, she considered every possible angle, including points of view I had never, ever considered, and wrote about how she came to terms with the institution (because she didn’t have much of a choice) in Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage, which hit stores yesterday. She spoke with The Frisky about the joys and trials of matrimony. Keep reading »