October 11, 2011

old-fashioned marriage

I was talking with a colleague at work this morning and, though I don’t remember exactly how this topic was brought up, we started talking about commitment, marriage and how so many people were getting divorced these days. 

Anyway, she said, I guess the recession might be the cause of so many people getting divorced right now. You know, the economy is not as good it used to be, so people obviously fight a lot more about money than they used to and... well, if you're married and fight too much, then I think it's better to break up. I don't think marriage has to last forever and at least these days people can choose if they want to stay married or not. 

[This post is, basically, about what I told her and these are only a few thoughts on the matter.  I could ramble on forever about this topic, but I promise I’ll try to keep it brief and to the point.]

I watch the news. I know there are zillions of people getting divorced by the second. I also know that most of them now say that the number one cause of divorce was money fights and money problems. However, I think this whole thing is a lot more simple than that. I really think the problem is not the money or the lack of it. And it’s definitely not the recession.

it is a problem of definition.

See, i’m of the belief that when somebody has a problem, and this problem is shared with somebody else, it’s no longer a problem. It’s half a problem. When you have a husband or a wife, everything is supposed to be easier: shared blessings are sweeter and hardships lighter, especially financial problems. 

And i know I may be weird, because I see most people are so unbelievably selfish nowadays that they're not willing to share anything with each other, not even their own problems! They don’t solve their problems together as a couple anymore, they fight about them instead. Over and over again. 

Has anyone else noticed how nobody ever seems to make an effort to keep a relationship anymore? How nobody will try to make it work longer than a couple of months? People talk about their failed relationships as if they were a bunch of business ventures that didn't succeed, despite all the money they've thrown at it, but never their time. 

Well, 'if it is meant to be, it will be'. oh, please! seriously? Somebody has to wake these people up already! 

Then, it turns out they're all sad about how they just can't find the man or the woman that will commit to a relationship with them... despite all those books they've bought to try to figure out mars and venus and the whole freakin' galaxy...

I’m not saying I don’t recognize there are some cases where divorce is the only option: people love to go off on tangents saying how terrible it must be not to be able to get a divorce when you live under physical threats and abusive behavior... blah, blah. I'm not talking about that. Never was.

if what you’re saying is you are getting married with the possibility of parting ways somewhere down the line in your mind, and you choose to say those vows out loud... i mean, that says a lot about you then, doesn’t it?

Again, it is a problem of definition. If you want to engage in a relationship with somebody without all the attachments, the vows and everything, you can. But that's not marriage. It is something else. You may call it whatever you want: a joint venture, a civil union.. but it is definitely not marriage.

Marriage hasn’t got old. It is what it has always been. it hasn’t changed at all. you have. 

It only means you don’t like it, which is totally fine with me. 



source: photo

47 comments:

  1. You'r absolutely right with the "selfishness" part. People have more possibilities nowadays and I think that makes them a bit spoiled.

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  2. AMEN! I'm sharing this one!! Thanks for putting your thoughts into words here because I wish more folks thought like this.

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  3. Hey, @Halina. Nice of you to drop by!

    Thank you so much, @Christy Peffly! I know what you mean - I think about that all the time... I actually think it's not really necessary to give 'marriage' a whole new meaning and try to make it fit YOUR needs... but, hey, that's just me. :P It's good to know there are more people like me out there!

    Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. What a fantastic post, darling!!
    Enjoyed reading it so much :)

    <3-Cami from First Day of My Life

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  5. I totally agree. People don't take it as seriously. When things go bad they think "I deserve better than this." "Maybe he is The One. Maybe I chose the wrong person". Like anything in life there will be good and bad times. Marriage to me means you are committed to helping each other through all of it.

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  6. So true, @Suz. So true.
    Good and bad times. Like everything else in life. It's so childish to think you're too good for that, isn't it?

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  7. Loved this post!
    Marriage has definitely seen it's better days, and unfortunately, 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce.
    I'm going to be vocal here, which is something I rarely am in comments, and will say that I think a lot of it has to do with the pre-marriage part. The norm for meeting your mate is meet someone, get emotionally and/or physically attached, break up. and repeat. and repeat. Starting at a young age.
    And then, Mr Perfect- or Miss Perfect comes along, and you marry. And then- the tradition of breaking up continues.
    Anyway, I believe that saving yourself for the one and only one is the best way to go. What more precious gift can I give to my husband other than, at the marriage alter, to be able to say, "This is me, you are the only man who has ever kissed me and held me. You have my whole heart, none of it has ever been given away."
    Yes, I think that's what I'd love my husband to know!
    I could raise some skepticism on this....but I believe this wholeheartedly!

    On a different note, this article might help you add "reply to comments" for each one. Just an interesting gadget! If you are not familiar with HTML, I would love to add it for you, however! I just happened to notice that you reply to about every comment! :)

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  8. Great post! I totally agree, people just give up and won't even try these days. It is especially important when there are kids involved. I do believe there are some issues that just can't be worked out and BOTH people have to be willing to try or else it won't work.
    I giggled at the mars, venus and 'the whole freakin' galaxy' part!
    SO FUNNY! : )

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  9. Amen! What a sad perspective you're coworker has.

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  10. @Ashlyn, thank you so much for the comment! I loved it! I think about that a lot too. And, unfortunately, you're right. Totally right. The problem definitely comes long before marriage takes place. Disposable relationships. So sad.
    I do believe that saving yourself for the one and only is the right thing to do. And I greatly admire people who do that. I really, really do.

    Oh, and by the way: thank you so much for the html code! I'll definitely try that! (I wish Blogger was more like Wordpress sometimes..) :P


    @Sheri, I can't even imagine how hard it must be for the kids when their parents break up, especially if they keep doing the same thing over and over again. Kids need stability to feel secure - that must be really hard for them.

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  11. I agree. I hadn't ever really thought about it like that, but you definitely have to share your problems in a marriage, and it doesn't necessarily come easily. Going into marriage with the idea that you can always get out if you want probably isn't a great plan.
    P.S. I nominated you for an award on my blog! I'd love for you to check it out! http://katelynbrooke88.blogspot.com/2011/10/versatile-blogger-award.html

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  12. I love this! We have money issues in our marriage, we have issues with my battling depression and my husband with his fight with bipolar disorder. There are days when I unbelievably hate him. I don't mean dislike, I mean hate. Capital H. But we have been together 14 years and married 8. And we keep trying hard to make it work. Hard. Capital H. Because if there is one thing worth fighting for, it's love. Capital L.

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  13. @Kate Thank you so much, Kate. I appreciate it.

    @Polish Mama on the Prairie. Relationships are hard, aren't they? And as @Suz said, marriage is all about commitment. How does anyone promise they will stay together through thick and thin, good times and bad, sickness and health, for richer or poorer... and then not fight for it? It never ceases to amaze me how easily people get a divorce months after getting married.

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  14. I absolutely agree! It is so easy for people to just walk away, they don't want to fight for each other. My husband and I married young, had an ill child, filed bankruptcy due to hospital bills, his company went under and we was laid off and that was just our twenties haha! We survived! Now, that's not to say we didn't have our moments our not liking one another but we always loved each other and we always communicated no matter what was going on. We grew together and we changed together. They never said marriage was easy, relationships in general are hard but you stay honest and continue to communicate you'll be fantastic:-)
    Great post!!!!

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  15. I love this! and completely agree!

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  16. and Ashlyn is so very right as well (:

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  17. Totally agree 100%. If your not completely commited then don't get married! It really is depressing how people see marriage these days.

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  18. @Andrea, it must have been so hard! See, I get so happy when I hear these kind of things. It's good to know there are so many people who thinks the way I do - knowing they won't let their marriage fail even when everything else falls apart. You guys are awesome; Do you have any idea how weird you are, that you stick together no matter what?? :)
    Seriously, you are awesome! Has anyone else told you that???
    Many blessings, honey. You guys are rock stars!

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  19. This quote from Paul Newman is my absolute favorite:

    “People stay married because they want to, not because the doors are locked.”

    I choose everyday to make my marriage work, no matter what happens. : )

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  20. I couldn't agree more!
    I loved this post. :)
    I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks this way!

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  21. Sad but true...marriage in some folks minds is not a complete partnership. Why get married if you are not in it together in everything....

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  22. @Stephanie, that's such a beautiful quote!

    @Chloe, apparently lots of people think this way, but I wish everybody did.. I'm getting tired of listening to so much nonsense everyday on television, at work.. people talk too much about things they know nothing about. Then you see all the famous people who can't keep a boy/girlfriend for 2 weeks straight talking about relationships and how you should behave, what you should do... all the self-help material you should buy to finally be able to figure out life. These people know nothing about life.. they think they do - bless their hearts, but they don't.
    Thank you so much for stopping by, honey. Always good to see you around!

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  23. Fantastic, wonderful post. You know I absolutely agree with you :). The Hollywood-ized vision of marriage that involves people staring lovingly into each other's eyes day in and day out, always looking charming or charmingly messy, is an absolute tragedy. Anyone who imagines that their marriage will or ought to be such a lukewarm one-dimensional snooze-fest is delusional.

    I am such a fan of DEFINING terms correctly before we use them, so I am smitten with the fact that you pointed out that it's people's perceptions of what a marriage should be that is the problem "these days."

    Thank you for reading my story and leaving those comments. So happy to have found you!

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  24. @Dwija {House Unseen} Wow. I mean, you just nailed it!

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  25. So true, marriage is a wonderful thing.You absolutely shouldn't get married if you don't plan for it to last forever. Hubby and I started building a foundation for a lifetime together right from the start. People just don't take marriage serious enough anymore.

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  26. @2sidedbliss they don't.. it's so sad. But what makes me really mad is that people want marriage to adapt to their circumstances, not the other way around. The rest of us should respect their decisions and let people do whatever they want with their lives - it's just that it bothers me so much that they mess with the concept of marriage that is, and has always been, unchangeable.

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  27. Completely true! The part about selfishness is also sad but true...but if people only realize this, they can change the way they think!

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  28. I know! I wonder why there are so many self-help books in the market... things only begins to change for you with the first real look in the mirror, doesn't it?
    Thank you so much for stopping by, @Rida!

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  29. Well, I can't really comment on divorce, not having experienced it (and hopefully I never will!). I wish it were easier for couples to find happiness though.

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  30. Great. Clever. Smart. No words to describe how much I 101% agree. Definition for dummies. How does that sound?

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  31. @Lisa Oh, I really think it is much easier than it looks. Most of the hardships couples go through nowadays is caused by a lack of common sense. I'm not saying I'll never, ever go through a divorce because we never really know - and I also hope I never have to experience it.
    But I just feel like our generation doesn't seem as mature as previous generations. People suck at handling conflict nowadays. Our generation... we're so spoiled. And marriage won't work when people are too self-absorbed to focus on the other person's needs.

    @Rafael Gonçalves Wow, I'm so happy to hear you say that: you're the first man to comment on this post! Thank you so much. Good to know that I'm not speaking for women only. :)

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  32. Hi Luisa, thanks for popping by my little blog :)
    Such a great post! I couldn't agree with you more! People are so selfish in their relationship... wanting everything to be so perfect and their terms without even trying or putting any effort in! Relationships are hard work sometimes, are people these day afraid of a bit of hard work and so just opt out!!!? I think it is really sad!

    But I'm a lucky one and have a great relationship with my man, we share our problems and work on them together! We are very happy and I hope we end up looking like that gorgeous old couple in the photo :)

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  33. omg, I share your sentiments. These days, it's easier to get a divorce than to make a relationship work.

    I am a second generation Indo-Canadian and my parents marriage was arranged and they're still together. Back in the day, there wasn't really an option of divorce because it was considered taboo.

    But now, I think since its accepted and not a big deal, more people are considering it.

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  34. @lamina - I'm so happy for you! And I loved what you said about the gorgeous old couple in the photo. I thought nobody was going to say anything about the picture I chose for this post. I was searching for a nice image for this post on the web and I fell hopelessly in love with this one. They are old but young at heart :P It's the cutest thing, isn't it! Thank you so much for stopping by!

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  35. Thank you so much @Dilan Dilir and @jkd for stopping by my blog :P

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  36. New fan from the Fancy Friday Blog Hop Week #26!
    Come by and see me :) Have a blessed week!
    ~Heather

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  37. Darling--- oh-so-well-said.

    In our culture today, specifically America, there is no true definition to anything. In a world where people have the "right" to anything they want and decide on their own "truth," there can be no stable marriages. Like anything else, you must build marriage on something to make it work: something outside of both partners.

    People are so selfish today. We live in a culture of me. It is acceptable to pleasure yourself in any way you wish. The more we continue down this road and blur these once-defined lines, we lose sight of the distinctions that make old-fashioned marriage so functional... and enduringly beautiful.

    I am in no hurry to get married because I understand so well my own shortcomings. I am too immature and ambitious, and perhaps will be for several years.

    Thanks for a thoughtful post. <3

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  38. Saw you on blog hop and now gfc following. What an interesting post I share similar views with yourself, I think many marriages could have lasted if people had given more thought to others. My parents divorced and I think many don't think of how it affects the children. I am married an hope it never comes to divorce. There are always ups and downs but that is life and as long as you communicate with each other you have a better chance of a happy marriage. Karima www.karimascrafts.com

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  39. Beautifully said, @Courtney
    Thank you so much for your sweet words, girls :P

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  40. Found this through Christy Pleffy and love it!

    You are so right. At the first of your post I was thinking money issues, no way! What about the Great Depression? Really, my grandparents didn't have money issues? They did and they stayed together! And my Grandma was 16 when she made the decision to always love my Grandpa...and she did!

    My husband and I are having issues right now but divorce IS NOT the answer. We need to work better on communicating and sticking together. We have made it through so much as a couple and we will make it over this hurdle as well. It is posts like yours that remind me how precious marriage is and how lucky we are to be with the one we love....so let's not take it for granted!

    Peace and Happiness!

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  41. I love it! You just don't like and that's fine with me :-) well put! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this! :-)

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  42. Thank you so much for stopping by, @Sarah! :P

    @{lifeasa}RunningMom: I loved what you said about the Great Depression and our grandparents.. Seriously, I think about those things all the time. People married so young back then and they were a lot more committed to marriage and love than they are now. Many people say our grandparents stayed together mostly because they didn't have any options. And though I know divorce really was a tabu, I believe that generation was much happier than ours.
    I wish you guys the BEST of luck and lots of love. Every couple goes through rough times... I wish you tons of patience to get through each bad day. Your marriage will thrive. I'm sure it will - I love it that you really believe marriage is worth fighting for! Many blessings, darling.

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  43. Fantastic post!! I absolutely agree.

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  44. "if what you’re saying is you are getting married with the possibility of parting ways somewhere down the line in your mind, and you choose to say those vows out loud... i mean, that says a lot about you then, doesn’t it?"

    Truer words have never been spoken. I agree with you 100% about people being selfish. I would like to also say that I believe that one of the reasons for the high rate of divorce is marrying the wrong person. If that person you are marrying is not someone you are planning to share your WHOLE being with... then really.

    Glad to have read this post.

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  45. I completely 100% agree... Husband & I went into our engagement and marriage with the idea of divorce not being an option. If problems arise, which they have and will again, we have made a conscious effort to work through problems and talk and be open and honest. So far, we've been in a relationship for 8 years and married for almost 2. We've gone through so many problems and issues but have always been determined to come out on the other side.

    I am so glad someone had the guts to say this!

    Hope you and your family have a wonderful new year!!

    Fairdale Diaries

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