Reflecting on Wedding Vows and Commitment


It has really struck me, reading many of the posts of many Ostomates. A husband or wife decides to leave. Wedding vows are spoken as part of the wedding ceremony. At the time most of us are younger and distracted by the wedding itself. I really didn't give a lot of thought to the vows.

For richer or poorer, in sickness and good health, forsaking all others, till death do us part (hope I got it correct).

I watched a video of my wedding. And really listened to the vows. When we are young and healthy... we don't think about the day when your mate might get sick or disabled.

I'm working past 65 and plan 3 more years. I could have retired years ago. Only so my wife has excellent medical care. I would never just leave her when and if the going got tough. I took my vows. Everyone should think hard about them before and after marriage.


Hello Beachboy.
Thank you for such a poignant story.
I believe my own wedding vows did not contain the word 'good' before health. This meaning that it applied whether one's health was good, bad or in between.

Best wishes


Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate

Why Join MeetAnOstoMate?

First off, this is a pretty cool site with 33,420 members. Get inside and you will see.

It's not all about ostomy. Everything is being discussed.

Many come here for advice or to give advice 🗣, others have found good friends 🤗, and there are also those who have found love 💓. Most of all, people are honest and truly care.

Privacy is very important - the website has many features that are only visible to members.

Create an account and you will be amazed.


I looked up traditional wedding vows.

It goes like this:

__, take thee, ___, to be my wedded husband/wife/spouse, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God's holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith [or] pledge myself to you."

There are a few variations, but the main vows remain the same.

Most of my friends and coworkers are divorced. Some more than once.

I married at 28. At 23, I had surgery and radiation treatment for stage 4 thyroid cancer. I wasn't sure how long I would make it. When I first met my wife, my surgical scar was very noticeable. When she asked me about it, I said "It's been 4 years, I seem to be in good health." So we married a year later. Then shortly thereafter, more tumors popped up. I returned to the hospital for more surgery, more radiation. My wife was certain: I was toast due to an unfavorable prognosis from my oncologist. My cancer had spread to both lungs and had stopped uptaking iodine. So... no treatment options left. I had many more surgeries, aggressive chemotherapy. Spent a lot of time in hospitals.

But a funny thing happened on my way to the grave.... I'm still here. My wife never left me for "greener pastures." In spite of the cancer, I've enjoyed good health. Then I end up at age 65 with a colostomy. My wife never wavered in her support of me.

We didn't have children, so just us 2.

We only get so much time. I'm fortunate I don't have to spend that time alone. I wish other folks could be as fortunate.


Hello Beachboy.
Thank you so much for sharing this story. I has cheered me up no end this morning.
Best wishes



Many other reasons also, but her moving out when I wasn't fully healed and back to work yet is not forgivable, so divorce was inevitable.

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

This morning at church the sermon was about wedding vows! Someone is reading my mind. Pastor mentioned how vows are spoken during the wedding ceremony, but not really listened to. His advice for marital longevity: Give and take. Forgiveness and understanding. It was a great sermon.


It may be my cynical side, but I don't think the wedding vows are worth the paper they are printed on. My husband has stuck by me, and me by him, for the last 38 years, and we took no vows. We are not even legally married, but I call him my husband and he is. We are devoted to each other, and love each other, and vows are not necessary to keep us together, and furthermore, if one or the other of us decided it was time to leave, a vow would not keep us together, nor should it. I wouldn't want someone staying with me out of obligation and neither would he.



A newlywed couple were on the way to the groom's place where they would live, but he fell ill and had to be nursed back to health. He thanked his new wife to which she replied that she had taken a vow to be with him 'in sickness and in health'. His reply: 'Wait till you see for richer or for poorer'.


Thank you for sharing your experience with wedding vows and that piece of paper...we call a license.

I believe that paper actually hurts the marriage. It did mine.

Many couples can resort to common-law marriages.

It's basically a contract that divides ownership of everything by 50%.🤪🤪 In the end.

Don't quote me but here in the states I think a live-in partner of several years equals to a common-law spouse. Legal? IDK anyone in a common-law marriage...

But others do feel to commit with paper in hand.

Why is it after dating several years then marriage (w-license) fails so quickly?

Whatever you are doing Terry, seems a better way.

Good for you guys.



Different states have different laws regarding ownership of marital assets. Here in California, we are a "Community property" state. All assets earned during marriage are co-owned 50% by the husband and 50% by the wife.

EssEm King
Reply to TerryLT

Same. Marriage has always seemed like a form of permission to me. I was a kid when I first declared I would never do it, and I never changed my mind. I never wanted kids, either. My partner calls me a dream girl. We've been together nearly 30 years. It was he who encouraged me to get the colostomy my Dr. recommended, and he has never once looked at me differently since, which 100% made it easier for me to rebuild my own self-confidence. Last month we did our wills and the paperwork necessary to be each other's medical power of attorney. It's our only commitment on paper.

Reply to warrior

Here in Canada, we are considered married in the eyes of the law. After cohabitating for two years, you are married in every sense, except for that lack of piece of paper.


Reply to EssEm King

We did the same with the wills and power of attorneys several years ago. It's a nice secure feeling.


Past Member
Reply to Beachboy

That was beautiful. My husband passed before I had my colostomy, but he was there for every chemo, every radiation of my stage 4 rectal cancer, and he died. He died from a brain bleed. Death certificate says complications from a fall at home. I didn't even know he fell. I was in the hospital. I really miss him.


Hi Sunshine 

Sorry to hear about your husband. 

I've found that the older I get, the less people are left that I knew.  Many of my lifelong friends died relatively young for various reasons.  My mom died at age 50 from a stroke, I removed her from life support and donated her organs.  Now at age 65, it's just me, my wife, and a spoiled cat.

I hope you can continue to find joy in your life.