Photos by nubuck via stock.xchng
A while back, Nate and I were talking about how some people really desire marriage and some people, like ourselves, are really wary about the idea.
The concept is kinda silly if you think about it:
Take one flawed person primarily concerned with his needs and wants.
Add another flawed person primarily concerned with her needs and wants.
Ask them to think of the other person’s needs and not just their own and love the other flawed person unconditionally until one of them dies.
Not exactly the picture of marriage thrown at you every day on like, let’s say, The Bachelor.
Ladies, let’s move past the ficticious, glammed up illusion, also known as the wedding.
I think women tend to be more excited and more focused on the wedding… (one day) than the actual marriage (one lifetime).
Which is also silly.
What’s scary about marriage is this reality:
Most people go into it with the best intentions. and with the goal of keeping the promise “til death do us part.” And yet half of them end.
It’s like they innocently take the jump… but no one knows what really happens afterwards. Here I am, an unmarried woman looking at all the failed marriages around me… and it feels like these people get sucked into this vortex that no outsiders can get access to unless they take the leap themselves…
Is any of this making sense?
So enough of the negative stuff. Onto the positive stuff…
Nate and I were talking about how the great thing is that marriage involves two people with the freedom of choice.
Marriage doesn’t just fall apart without choices made by two individuals.
A failed marriage isn’t something that happens to a couple. It’s something they decide. Not in one grand moment of course.
No one wakes up and says “Hmmm, I think I want a failed marriage today. Yeah, yeah, that’s what I’ll have.”
Rather I think it’s the failure to translate from you and me to us. That kind of “oneness” I think is essential. It forces each person to think about their choices in terms of how those choices affect them as a unit, not individually.
Otherwise, it’s too easy to put your own needs above that of the other person. Maybe I’m way off base, since like I said, I’m not in the vortex, but I believe that a failed marriage is the result of a build up of choices to prioritize the needs of self over the needs of the unit or the other person.
Find me one failed marriage that didn’t end because of this reason (for one or both parties) and I’ll change my theory:)
So the positive note is that because marriage and failed marriages involve choices, every couple has the choice to keep going. You can’t control the other person, but you can do everything in your power to meet that other person’s needs and love them with all you’ve got.
Your marriage doesn’t have to be another statistic…
Because of the power of choice.
Because you can choose to nurture that unit you’ve created.
Because you can say this:
“It’s us now. We can make this anything we want.”