Some people say that they no longer attend weddings because the marriages aren’t lasting very long. I haven’t been to that many weddings in my life, but having had one and having been involved (to varying degrees), in the planning of a few, I know that we sometimes put greater stock in the wedding that lasts a few hours, rather than the marriage, which is supposed to last for more than a few years.
We’ve all seen the wedding planning shows where all the details are painstakingly attended to. Most of the attention is concentrated on what happens after the vows. Some brides even have two dresses because the traditional (long) wedding gown is sometimes not suitable for the ‘after-party’ that some receptions become.
The groom is relegated to second class status, because it’s really ‘the bride’s day’ and all he is required to do is to show up. Some men are happy to stay out of the decisions about the what, where, and when. But they’re probably saving their strength for the actual marriage which people say requires so much work.
Nobody goes into marriage thinking of divorce, unless you’re well-off and insist on a pre-nup. The rest of us think that our insurance rests in knowing our partner for years, before we take that ultimate step – but does that guarantee a successful marriage?
I know a woman who met her husband when he visited her island for vacation; they’ve been married for over twenty years. They don’t have any children. So could that be their secret?
I had a friend who married someone five months after she met him, while she was visiting family abroad. When asked how she knew it was the right decision, she replied that when it’s right, you just know. Which should also mean that you know when it isn’t.
Some people live together for years without that ‘piece of paper’, and soon after making it official, they go their separate ways. Maybe expectations change? Some have known each other and dated for years, but after taking the plunge, decide that the water isn’t fine after all. Maybe they should have shacked up first?
How about the ones that have lasted for years, through the death of parents and in-laws, the birth and growth of children, but for some reason they throw in the towel before what should be their golden years. Maybe they’ve become too familiar?
The vows say ‘for better or for worse’, but since life is short, some people will tell you that the best thing to do in an unhappy marriage is to get out of it. That way, both parties can be happier apart. But for some, the uncoupling and its attendant issues aren’t worth the effort. What’s a few more years in misery?
I don’t make any judgements either way, and compared to a lot of people, I have many more miles to travel; but I’ve come to realize that, notwithstanding the ‘hard work’, sometimes marriage really is luck of the draw.