For obvious reasons I pray this is my first and last marriage. I’m no expert and I’m learning what it means to be married on a
daily basis, by putting one foot in front of the other. So, last week when my fellow blogger Tiffany discussed the Washington Post article, “The Marriage Myth: Why do so many couples divorce? Maybe they just don’t know how to be married” I was all ears. It’s a great article that discusses the ideal that couples can be taught how to be married, which I firmly believe to true. For me the article brought about an epiphany. In the big scheme of things I don’t know anything about being married, but I’m willing to learn as much as I can. In fact, I’m on the lookout for a great couples workshop(let me know it you know of any in Florida). I would like to learn how to communicate better, and solve conflicts better as a couple. Not to say we have a problem, not at all, but knowledge is power.
Since reading that article, I’ve been proactively searching the web for articles, advice, etc for newlyweds. One such website I found was About.com‘s Newlywed blog written by Francesca Di Meglio. Today Francesca focused on the topic that love is the only good motivation for marriage. She discusses a quote from the film Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Here is the quote:
Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being in love which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.
Wow! This quote touched my heart in so many ways. I love Dr. B so profoundly that at times I cannot even articulate how I feel. I’m so entwined(as the quote states) with my husband that it is inconceivable that we should ever be apart. But, then I wonder is that enough? Is our love big enough and strong enough to endure the test of time? When were no longer feeling “in love” is love enough? No, I don’t think that love by itself is enough. I believe that love can use a little help. Help in the form of marriage workshops, books, counseling, etc that teach us how to be, and how to stay married.
To throw another twist at you, there is the debate about money. In this blog post, “Cash and Coupling: why marrying for money isn’t a bad idea” the author, Jessica Wakeman, voices her opinion about the role money plays in the success or failure of marriage. Jessica believes that it is important to take into account the ability of your husband to support a family financially. Jessica states:
Take me, for instance. I’m afraid I’m going to get tarred and feathered as a “bad feminist” for admitting this, but yeah, I do want to marry someone who can financially support both me and our kids.
Some will argue that a woman who thinks that way is a gold digger(see the comments section on Jessica’s post!), I personally don’t see what’s wrong with her line of thinking. Instinctively women are wired to seek mates that can support, and provide for a family. It’s a basic instinct that has been traced back to the caveman. So, why is it a much debated topic among women? Is it not possible to find spouse who you love, and has the financial means to support a family? Is that such a far-fetched idea? I think not. I love the fairy tale love story, I really do. My own story is not far from it. But I’m a realist. I know and understand that it takes money to pay a mortgage, it takes money to pay a car note, it takes money to raise children. Money does matter. Not having money can cause conflict in a marriage. Can one mitigate the possibility of conflict caused by money, yes, by seeking a mate that will be a good provider. But,” good provider” is defined by the woman who is seeking one.
Luckily were live in a day and age where we have the freedom of choice. Whether your 18 and you chose to marry a starving artist, or you forty and you marry a starving artist. It’s your choice, your decision, your life. You define what is enough to sustain your marriage, be it love, money, actively working it at, etc.
My choice is all three. I believe that for me they all play a role in the success of my marriage. There are many other factors that play a role in a successful, long-term marriage and I would love to hear you views.
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