Stephanie Tallent and Jason Nece went to their 36-week pregnancy checkup, but they weren’t expecting that she would be admitted to the hospital that very day because she was in labor.
While they were excited they were going to have a baby soon, it did throw a wrench into their plans. They had intended to get married before their baby was born, but it didn’t seem like that was going to be able to happen. However, the couple had just picked up their marriage license the day before, which just so happened to be out in their car, and she had a white dress with her that she had been planning to drop off at the dry cleaner’s after her appointment. And a new plan was made — get married at the hospital, and then go have your baby.
Hospital staff whirled into action. They secured a chaplain, their obstetrician gave her flowers that she had on her own desk, and someone let her borrow a string of pearls. The wedding march was played on a cellphone, and staff sang to them as well. And after they were declared man and wife, she was shuttled off to the operating room, where a C-section was performed and their baby girl entered the world.
Getting married before children are born is seen as a long-held tradition, one in which this couple strongly wished to adhere to. It’s uplifting to see that even though there was a time crunch, others around this new mom and dad made a wedding happen, and even though it wasn’t what they had planned on (and definitely not where they planned on), it’s going to be a treasured memory they will look back on for the rest of their lives.
Not everyone gets married before they have children, and while that rate has generally trended upward over the years, it hasn’t been a steady climb. For example, in 1999, 32.8 percent of births were to unmarried women, but in 2013 (the most recent year for which complete data is available), this accounted for 40.6 percent of births. However, 2013 was the fifth straight year in which this particular stat shows a decline.
While this couple is adorable and their story lovely, it doesn’t mean parents who don’t get married before their little one arrives are doing anything wrong either. Although studies show that those who have babies before marriage tend to be less educated than their counterparts who complete college, that isn’t true for all who either wait for marriage or decide to not go down that path completely.
Basically… to each their own! If you’re facing baby’s birth and haven’t walked down the aisle yet, well, that’s fine. And if you want to throw a last-minute wedding to make sure baby’s parents are married, congratulations to you!