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Is There Hope for the American Marriage?

Is There Hope for the American Marriage?

This is a very well written article by Caitlin Flanagn. I feel she did a great job to show the woes in todays society due to marriage, but in order to be fair, i must look at the other side and why marriage isn't the end all be all that we were trained to believe it was. That we are in our greatest and best times human. We have human needs and desires. Do i think it is right to have these needs. I think in terms of humanity. We are human and we have desires that make us, just that, human beings.

We try to hold each person up to the God standard. We are not Jesus Christ and when we take those sacred vows, we are somehow held to higher standards. It amazes me that we put people in such high revere just because they have a ring on their finger. It seems that it would be more logical to put that ring on the finger if these people were upstanding parents. Every year we commit life to a child, whether we are married or not, we should get a start, medal or maybe even another ring.

Caitlan quotes, " These were two middle aged, conservative Republican men who had said, To hell with being part of the Cialis generation... Their actions were so willful and blatantly self centered that the two of them could have credibly fashioned themselves as rebels, possibly even heroes, if they could have just stopped crying" Its understandable that they were crying because they had hurt their significant others. Maybe they were crying because they were taught growing up that you get married, have children and live a fairy tale life? Maybe that isn't the truth. Maybe our parents should tell you the truth that Marriage is a commitment above all commitments and there are going to be times when it is hard as hell to keep that commitment to the other person. There are times that you might see someone of the opposite sex that really draws you in and because of the same mundane in and out day to day routine, you can for a moment see yourself caught up in a wild and passionate affair with this member of the opposite sex.

I know sex isn't everything, but there is much to be said about sex outside of the realm of procreation. We tend to look at (from personal experience and teachings), marriage as the natural outcome of finding our one true mate and upon finding that one true mate, we decide to procreate and make generations to come. Maybe if we were taught the truth in schools and by our friends that marriage is not the end all be all. Not everyone is called to the so-called higher standard of marriage. It is for a select few who can live out that calling with no problem. They may be individuals who need that one on one partnership and have no problem being in the forever commitment because it seems natural to them.

Caitlin goes on to say, " And so two more American families discover a truth as old as marriage: a lasting covenant between a man and a woman can be a vehicle for the nurture and protection for each other, the one reliable shelter in an uncaring world-" I know for purposes of this article it is only two families and they happen to be high ranking officials. Why are they any more important than Jane and John doe down the street. Public scrutiny could be the culprit. Again we hold our elected officials to higher standards. Because we elected them, they cannot have impure thoughts or actions because they are higher officials than the common layperson.

Maybe we should have these conversations before we begin dating such that, "Hey, i know we are going to be involved in intimate situations, it is NOT my intention to procreate, but if that happens, I will step up and be a supportive figure in our childs life". At the same token, if that happens, don't tell the child that your father is perfect, or mom for that matter. Just like we hold our elected officials to an unobtainable standard that leads to imperfection, how bout we tell our kids from day one that mother and father figures are not perfect, but that no matter what, mother and father figure will love you unconditionally. Nobody is perfect and holding people, elected or otherwise is rediculous. Maybe we should learn to love and accept the imperfections.

Lets move away from the marriage perfection that we all seem to notice. We look at people like George W. Bush or Barack Obama and see them married and say, "Now there is an upstanding guy and he is great because he is so in love with his wife." Why can't he be in love in the absence of the M word. Here are some interesting statistics: http://www.divorcemag.com/statistics/statsUS.shtml

These are statistics and can be manipulated, i realize that, I just think that we need to get our information from within, and multiple sources, not just one place. Look at all sides of an issue and see where you fit. Caitlin also goes on to say that married children have better opportunities than single parent households. I would agree with that due to dual incomes, however, i have also seen with my own eye, numerous occasions of single family households that work where the children are taught love and life without boundaries.

I did notice an interesting figure in the article. Caitlin asked, "Does the father have to actually be married to the mother of his children to have a positive effect on them? "Not if he behaves exactly like a married man...If he is willing to contribute 70% of his income to the child's upbringing, dedicate himself around the clock to the child's well-being and create a stable home life and that includes his actually liveing there with mother and child-he might be able to give his child the boon of fatherhood without having to tie the knot." 70%??????? Really?????? Okay guys if that is alarming, make sure you have removed all and I mean all selfishness from your being. Your days of partying and having fun and living a single life, won't happen on 30%.

The article finishes with a popular family icon John and Kate and somehow brings to light that this story could give us hope. Kate as an upstanding mom with 8 children to feed, had to often grasp with the reality of 8 kids and that life was really no longer hers to live and that she and Jon had given up any freedom to raise these kids. Next thing you know, Jon has an affair with a 23 year old because he was bored with being bossed around by Kate. She comments, " America's obsession with high profile marriage flameouts such as the Gosselins, Sanfords and Edwardses-reflects a collective ambivalence toward the institution...It is time instead to come to terms with both our unrealistic expectations for a happy marriage and our equally unrealistic beliefs about the consequences of walking away from the families we build"

I couldn't agree more. We need to think about what it is we truly want. Do we want to be truly free and be able to have the joys of what we currently have in our lives, or are we called to a higher purpose to procreate. If we are of that belief are we able to be completely honest and say we can go the distance without ever looking at another person in lust, can we remain faithful in unfaithful times, and if we fuck up, are we man/woman enough to shrug it off and say, what i have over there isn't as good as i have it over here. I acted in accordance of human desires, i love myself no matter what, and move on to be a great advocate and teacher in a childs life. We should stop the cinderella fairytales and be honest with our kids so they don't have to be disappointed in our elected officials or TV families when they don't make it. A great friend of mine once paraquoted, "A man/woman shows who they are by what they do with what they have been given"

Much love to you all and may you have a
great week. I am not perfect and have opinions and sometimes i like to voice them. Thanks for reading and hope to write more soon!

Until next time...

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