Divorce is everywhere.
I am divorced.
My first marriage lasted, ummm, 3 years? Heck, I don’t even remember. I’ve blocked a giant chunk of that part of my life right out of my brain and I don’t enjoy fetching for memories either. I am grateful, as deeply grateful as one can get, that my first husband and I did not have children. He had children. We did not.
Our marriage was not built on a solid foundation. It was built on lies and deceptions. His and mine. I thought he was wealthy. He thought I loved him. It was worse than that, actually, but I am not going to dig for more. I’d like to forget that entire 5 year period of my life, truthfully. I was a bad person in that time. Bad. And, the consequences of my poor decision making rippled through an entire family. Two families.
I married my sweet Rich in 1999 after about a year and a half of dating. ‘Dating’, ha!, that seems silly. We actually dated for maybe 4 months and then we moved in together. So, we were doing all things married people do, but didn’t actually tie the knot until November of ’99. How common is that these days? It is so common most people don’t even think of it as wrong. But, it is wrong. And, backwards. However, I’ve done it twice now (ex-hub, forever hub). In fact, so many of my friends and family members have done this that it doesn’t make anyone bat an eyelash anymore. Our society is so lame.
I could take you through almost 10 years of marriage and make this post as long as my driveway. Or, I could tell you why our marriage is so good.
I asked Rich why he thinks we have such a great marriage. To make it easy, and since he was bleary-eyed from just waking up, I said “give me three reasons”. He said:
- We don’t fight much.
- We love each other.
- We respect each other.
I agree. My 3 additions:
- We have a solid foundation.
- We’re honest with each other.
- We have learned to compromise. It’s rarely “my way or the highway”.
I wish I could grab every young couple by the ears and sit them down for 30 minutes to fill them with all the wisdom I can muster so they won’t fall into the traps our society has set for them. So they won’t fail. There are so many lies. Too many. If only I could. If only I could AND if only they would listen.
What society tell us is not true.
You can’t be independent and stay married.
You can’t be “right” and stay married.
You can’t lie to one another and stay married.
You can’t be selfish and stay married.
And, those are just a few of the things society says “yes, you can”.
My parents have been married for 37 years.
Rich’s parents have been married for 37 years.
It’s not by accident. At all.
It’s by hard work and commitment.
It won’t always be rosy or fun or romantic.
But, it can always be good.
How have you made your marriage work?
Or, why did your marriage fail?