When, as a culture, did we resign ourselves to the fact that marriage is little more than a contractual arrangement that can be entered or exited upon the whims of the partners? At what point was it decided that the bulk of our available time and energy should be devoted to selfish interests and not to the betterment of a marriage? And how did it become so acceptable to live a huge part of our lives in a loveless relationship?
I’ve been considering the creation of this blog for a long time. I love being married to my wife of 29 years, and in all honesty find her more beautiful and exciting today than the day that we wed. I know that not everyone is blessed to find themselves in this same situation, and my wife Tara & I have tried to help that by teaching a marriage enrichment course through our church, and working with individual young couples to teach them some healthy practices to keep things on a positive note.
Last night we found ourselves in a deep conversation with our 21 year old son. His wedding date is now less than a month away. He made a comment that grieved me deeply, “I don’t know if you can reasonably expect more than mediocrity from a marriage”. I about fell out of my chair! Here he is about to embark on the most exciting journey of his life, and he’s anticipating “average at best”. When I inquired where this mindset was coming from, he brought up some persuasive truths:
- Their pre-marital counseling is primarily focused on how to survive the inevitable tough times ahead
- The books they’ve been advised to read all portray the crises in marriage and how to endure them
- Many of the marriages he sees around him are facades. All smiles on the public front, but much hidden pain behind closed doors.