Last night before bed, Lucian asked me an interesting question.
Lucian: Mom, can dogs get married?
Me: No, Lucian. Dogs can’t get married, only humans can.
Lucian: But they can have babies so why can’t they get married?
Me: Hmm…well, getting married is a ceremony in which you make a commitment to be with another person forever. Dogs can’t talk so they can’t get married.
I caught myself cutting off the word forever. Did I envision myself getting married and staying married to my husband until death parts us? Yes, I did. But I stopped myself from making that part of my definition of marriage to my son only because so many people get divorced. Forever doesn’t mean forever if you can simply sign a piece of paper that says I changed my mind. I no longer want to be with my spouse.
As I tucked Lucian in and turned off his light, I found myself needing affirmation that my husband still felt the same way. Does he still want to be married to me, like I want to be married to him? So I shared my conversation with our son and asked him straight out. “Do you still want our marriage to be forever?” And he replied how I deep down knew he would. “Yes, of course! You do too, right?” And even though I would say we have a good relationship, it felt good to hear that after almost nine years of marriage.All day today these thoughts of marriage have been nagging at me. My sister just went through a rather messy divorce after 13 years of marriage. Two of my brother-in-laws have been divorced (one twice) and have had struggles with custody of children and plenty of drama with their ex wives. And while my parents have remained happily married, it seems that they are no longer the norm. Are we beyond saving marriages?
So what has really happened? Is it that more and more people are less likely to try and stay to work things out because getting divorced no longer has the same social stigma that it once had? Perhaps we are more selfish or unwilling to stay in a miserable marriage. Many woman are unwilling to stay now that they are less dependent upon a man.
There are plenty of ways to try and work things out with marriage counseling, even online with places like Mort Fertel counseling, with local professionals or within your church. But it seems more and more that step is skipped.
Do I have some fabulous marriage advice? Not really. The only thing I can say is that we have very similar views and really enjoy spending time together. We didn’t rush into getting married and took our timing getting to know one another before making that commitment. And I really believe that actually liking each other is the only thing that will keep you together when the newness wears off and life, especially life with kids, is thrown at you.
If you have your own wisdom on marriage, please share!