While reading the lastest issue of Glamour Magazine last night, I came across an interesting article. Titled The Curse of the Just-OK Marriage," it is based on excerpts from the book Marriage Confidential by Pamela Haag. She addresses the "Post romantic age of workhorse wives, royal children, undersexed spouses and rebel couples who are rewriting the rules." Wow, that is a mouthful! I am focusing on the marriage part today.
This is just one example of a long list of many who are re-examining modern marriage, couples & monogamy. The modern love is complicated stuff. What does it take to survive in a relationship now? Is being with one person "till death do you part" even possible anymore? I know that everyone out there has questioned this at some point.
Haag speaks of people stuck in an "OK marriage." Where the couple is at the "ambivalent" stage. I'm not sure what people expect when they are married for long periods of time. Sure, the spark dies some, thing get routine, complacent & dare I say, boring? I have been married for 15 years & with my husband a total of 18. I am very lucky in that I know he is the man for me. I never felt that I needed to go outside to "test the waters." I guess I am not the norm here. It looks like couples are in a panic over becoming friends. They are putting some much pressure on themselves & each other to be "what society expects them to be." I think in any relationship, you do what works for YOU! No one knows what goes on behind closed doors in your life, in your relationship. No one but you & your partner.
Marriage takes work. LOTS of work!!! Compromise, tolerance & sometimes, several adult beverages. It is not easy. It is not always fun, exciting & a bed full of rose petals. I think that the "modern" couple has an unrealistic notion that it will be "perfect." Then when they are disappointed they give up. What I am most proud of is that my husband & I are able to communicate. We do that really well. We really talk. Not via text, but actually face to face. I don't always like to hear what he has to say, but you have to get it out. If not, it is like a time bomb just waiting to go off.
Children are both a blessing & a curse in most relationships. I cannot imagine our life without them, but I won't lie about what kind of stress they put on the marriage. Children push you to your absolute limit of love, patience, anger & stress. They ground you, infuriate you & remind you everyday of what is truly important.
Haag talks often about the concept of "royal children." This trend of "child worship." Putting the children first, taking the children everywhere & basically allowing the kids to rule the roost. (We have all been out to dinner & seen this display. You are not sure if you want to smack the kids or the parents.) I will be the first to say, and judge me if you want, but this does NOT happen at my house. I think I'll save this topic for a blog all by itself. I'm getting all fired up!
The Today show recently did a piece on the ever-popular web site Ashley Madison. With over 800,000 members, it is the official cheaters web site. Their tag line is "Life is Short, Have an Affair." Really? This is what marriage has come to? People with blacked out faces admitting that having an affair, and I quote "has made them a better wife, mother & happier in general." Whatever works I guess. Some people are not with the right person. I do believe this. I am both disgusted & amazed by the popularity of this site. It represents the downfall of modern marriage. However, seeing how popular it is, maybe thet are defining what the future of marriage is.. I hope not.
This may be a "mars & venus" thing. I'm sure we all wish that our sex lives resembled a late-night movie on Cinemax. But let's be realistic. I'm a woman. I equate love with emotion & feelings (sorry guys, it's true) not sex. Sex is very important but I do not think it defines or is the first priority a good relationship. That's just me. .
I guess my question is monogamy possible? Do the vows we take mean anything anymore? Are we always going to be looking for someone or something else to make us happy? (If you even know what your definition of "happy" is.) Or is like when you buy your kids every toy in creation they want but they are happier playing with a ball of tin foil? You will always need & want more. When is enough, enough?
Most of us already know that the grass is NOT always greener. It may look really nice, but actually, it has lots of weeds, dead spots & needs watering, just like yours! You need to look at your own yard & remind yourself how amazing it is.