When Mary Kay Letourneau was released from prison in August 2004, she was required to register as a sex offender. Now, she's registered as a bride-to-be at Weddingchannel.com.
Letourneau, the pretty blond schoolteacher from suburban Seattle who spent 7 ½ years in prison for raping Vili Fualaau, one of her grade school students, apparently now intends to marry him.
Letourneau, 43, and the 22-year-old Fualaau are slated to say "I do" Saturday at a Seattle-area church in front of 200 guests, according to The Seattle Post-Intelligencer. However, investigative journalist Gregg Olsen, who wrote an extensive account of the case in his book "If Loving You Is Wrong," said he believes there won't be a wedding until May.
The King County Recorder's Office currently has no marriage license or license application on file for the couple. Washington State law requires a three-day waiting period before a marriage license becomes valid.
WeddingChannel.com, which partners with major retailers to compile online gift registries, also lists April 16 as the Letourneau-Fualaau wedding date. Didi Engel, vice president of e-commerce for the site, couldn't confirm whether the couple was committed to that date, but was confident that the registry was legitimate. "We make sure that our retail partners are doing their due diligence with their clients," she said.
Whether or not the nuptials will take place this weekend, their online gift registry is quickly filling up. The requests for Villeroy & Boch casual china and Kate Spade stemware on their Macy's registry have been filled, but so far there have been no takers for the scone pan or pizza maker on their Williams Sonoma list.
But what the couple may need more than that platinum band teapot on their Tiffany's wishlist could be long-term couples therapy. Therapists see serious obstacles for the couple and very little potential for a healthy marriage.
"It's no more realistic than a freakish reality TV show. The lack of social support for what they're doing will hurt their chances, and it's certainly going to be difficult for their children," said Roger Libby, a therapist and clinical sexologist and author of "Hooking Up: A Guide to Responsible Sex for Teenagers and Young Adults."
A union would be the second marriage for Letourneau, who was a 34-year-old married mother of four when she began a relationship with the then-12-year-old student. It would be the bridegroom's first.
The couple already has two daughters together. The girls, ages 6 and 7, have been raised by Fualaau's mother. Letourneau was pregnant with the older girl when she was arrested in 1997 and delivered their second daughter while in prison. The girls reportedly would serve as flower girls in any wedding ceremony.
There was no word on whether Letourneau's children from her first marriage might attend.
That Letourneau and Fualaau are still planning a future together despite the extraordinarily trying circumstances doesn't indicate they share love that has conquered all, according to Libby. On the contrary, he said, it suggests no particular depth or maturity of emotion.
"The attachment is strong, because it was made when he was so young," he said.
Libby said he believes the couple is confusing pheromonal attraction for love. "I don't doubt that there is a pheromone attraction, but he and she are not equals. They have an unhealthy, almost morbid, dependence."