Marriage is under attack!
Not by the radical gays or the ultra-conservative heretics, it is under attack by our own unrealistic expectations.
We require that our partner be a lover, a scholar, an emotional punching bag, a shoulder to cry on, the provider, the healer, a sexual fantasy, a champion and a responsible parent. Be impulsive and spontaneous, but within the confines of commitment and comfort. People cheat for a myriad of reasons, in fact there was a time when I felt that cheating was necessary to a healthy marriage, maybe that’s still the case, maybe it isn’t but the point is that it is difficult to find all of those elements in one counterpart, especially without knowing oneself. I think they are all attainable, but under the circumstances of understanding what each of those things mean to you. The bigger question is, what do you do to exhibit those qualities for your partner?
Let’s say you do find someone who fits the bill, THE ONE, now consider timing. It’s like life on earth and aliens. Sure aliens exist or have existed, but what are the odds of two separate life forces being alive at the same time during a 14 billion year period? Maybe not that extreme, but difficult nonetheless- Therein lies the struggle of marriage. We want something against all odds to happen, simply happen. Instead the adjustments should be made with the intersection between our desires and reality. I will never be one to advocate for settling, in fact do the opposite. We get one life, to sit in stagnant water is poisonous. The needs don't change either. We will still want from our partner more than they can probably give, the flip comes with the degree in which we want them.
The fix? If there is one, it is to be those things. Focus on being a better communicator first and foremost. Take responsibility of your own communication. I am the first to ignore my own advice. It's hard. It's painful and most of all, asking for something sexual and romantic is embarrassing, hell I shouldn't have to ask, they should just know, the moment should be right. Except that it isn't. That's not how the real world works, and the gap between only gets deeper. Also, embrace the communication between other people, friends, family, the friends you don't like. Understand that these ancillary people provide something that maybe you don't and can't or just not at that time. Lean into those vacancies with confidence and in time, resentment and bitterness will turn into growth and understanding.
Shakespeare has outlasted the love letter. Talk about timeless. Now everything is a quick text, or less, an emoji- A digital cartoon face to convey emotions. Unbelievable. I worry for the future generations and I’m a Millenial. Talk about irony. Movies inundate us with a fantasy that only tells a finite tale. Weddings are not a milestone, they are a decision. What would a marriage be without beginning with festivities and love and celebration… well I guess just a simple commitment.