Check our friend C’s recent commentary on Marriage here:
Very thought provoking. I’ve noticed that whenever the topic of marriage comes up, the statistic: “half of all marriages fail” is usually brought up.
But I am a firm believer that most couples get married because they, at one point or another, loved each other and had a happy relationship. Yet at some point half of the couples divorce. People get married with all these hopes and dreams, with visions of “happily ever after in the hearts”, yet two to three years later, they decide that they’ve had enough and split.
What happened to that love in the beginning? What happened to those dreams? Something must have changed during those first few years to have those feelings change so radically.
I think that happiness in a relationship is “A” prerequisite to get married, but it will not ensure the success of the marriage in the long term. In the words of Patty Smith, “Sometimes, Love just Ain’t enough”. Anyone who thinks otherwise is either naiive or reads too many romance novels. Romantic love just won’t cut it, especially in this day an age of Dual income families, no-fault divorces, pornographic filth and Desparate Housewife (I HATE THAT SHOW) culture.
So if Love just isn’t enough, what do you need? I definitely don’t have all the answers. I’m only 28 years old! But I have found that the marriages that last have a few things in common:
1) A mature attitude – Anyone that gets married because of the wrong reasons (Want to have sex, want a baby, at the right age to marry) needs to grow up a little bit more. Marriage is hard enough without bringing such false expectations to it.
2) A desire to Change WITH your spouse
My family had the “are you ccrazy?!?!” look when we decided to get married at 24, with the trend moving toward marriages later in life. But I thought to myself, we’re both young. I have found the right one, so why not get married sooner rather than later while we have the ability to change. By the time I hit 30, I will have been set in my ways and it will make it more difficult to change With my wife who is probably set in her ways. It’s definitely been an adjustment, but by marrying sooner rather than later, we have changed with each other. Also, it gives us the opportunity to have more kids if we wanted to.
I’m not saying to rush into things without thinking them through. But if you’ve found THE ONE, why delay?
3) Regular Time together
This is something that I need to improve upon. So many divorced couples live separate lives. Separate jobs, separate schools, separate goals, separate hobbies. They live their lives apart, although they live in the same house. They have kids, raise them. The kids leave, you’re left with a stranger that you married so many years ago.
One solution? Have at least one meal together each day. (Mushroom, we need to start doing this!) Have at least one night per week where you can spend it with your spouse. Date night shouldn’t stop when you get married! Have one night per week where you can spend it with your whole family. That way you’ll never grow apart, in spite of what life throws your way.
4) An abiding commitment to stay together for the rest of your life (ie. Divorce is not an option)
This doesn’t apply to people who have an abusive spouse. If you have an abusive spouse, that person doesn’t deserve you. Divorce him/her and move on.
It’s too easy to get a divorce these days. You get married not because you want to get divorced. You get married because you want to spend the rest of your life together. Marrige… it’s not always glamorous or as “yahoo”ish as C’s Friend Jin makes it out to be. Sometimes it can be down right sad at times. But that’s life! It’s Sad sometimes, it’s happy sometimes… sometimes there are long stretches of repetitiveness in between. And sometimes it can be just downright neat! But you made the choice to be with the one you married. You should stick with it. If it gets boring or if it gets sad, do what you can to make it better. Don’t take the easy way out (which in the long run is much harder)Make it happy. Fall in love again. It’ll take a lot of work if it gets THAT bad, but from what I’ve seen with other failed marriages, its not as much work as working through a divorce. You were in love at one point. You can fall in love with your husband or wife again.
Well, that’s my rant on marriages. For me, marriage to mushroom has been the most wonderful decision that I’ve made. I love my mushroom. She has brought so much happiness to my life. I hope I’ve done the same for her. At times, it’s hard but we’ve managed to pull together somehow. I hope we can continue!
Now, I don’t claim to have all the answers. We still have many years to find them out together though!