Post # 1
A few of my friends got divorced within a year. I won’t go into details but if I were in their situations, I might have gotten divorced too (there was serious emotional abuse, infidelity, etc.).
But recently, a friend of mine discovered her husband was unhappy and wanted a divorce (well, a separation… but it’s clear where this is heading). There was no emotional abuse, no infidelity; he was just unhappy and thought that marriage only makes sense when both people are happy.
I disagree… marriage is a committment. The whole point (to me) is to stick by each other in tims of difficulty. Otherwise, why not avoid marriage and just keep dating?
But it did get me thinking about what he said. Does marriage only make sense when both people are happy? If one person is unhappy, should they be free to look for happiness somewhere else?
Post # 3
- Wedding: November 2008 - 1930s Historic Building in Lakeland, FL
I could write a book on this subject, because I really feel like marriage takes time and work, a LOT of work. I don’t really support the idea that being "unhappy" is a reason to get a divorce. That’s not to say that I don’t empathize with those that have chosen to do that, but it’s just not why I chose to get married.
When I took my vows, I didn’t think to myself, well it’s okay because if I’m unhappy these won’t mean anything. No way jose! I was a very aware of the commitment I was making, and it’s gonna take more than just unhappiness to defeat our marriage!
I mean, I’m unhappy sometimes and so is my husband, but that just makes the other try harder to help through the hard times, it’s what makes us stronger and brings us closer. I mean, life is full of ups and downs and I can’t imagine not wanting my husband to be my side through all of them.
I’m just rambling at this point, but I think loving someone is a conscious choice. You don’t just happen to love someone, you make the choice to love them – for better or for worse. When I chose to get married, that was the commitment I was making to my husband. No matter what, I’m going to stand by his side and work with him through whatever he’s feeling.
Okay, I’m gonna jump off my soap box now. 😉
Post # 4
I think marriage is so beautiful and so holy because it is the closest resemblance of Christ’s relationship with the church (US!).
Miss Coconut is 100% right that loving someone is a conscious choice that must be made on a daily basis.
In order to truly have the right mindset about marriage and a successful marriage, one’s attitude cannot be "In what way will this person complete me and bring ME happiness?" but it should be "IN WHAT WAY, CAN I SERVE MY SPOUSE IN ORDER TO BRING THEM MORE JOY AND SATISFACTION?". That isn’t what our culture teaches today.
Both spouses will not always be happy at the same time, which is normal and fine. Fights are normal. Resolving fights and forgiving is REQUIRED. One of the most important aspects of disagreements is that when they come and one spouse falls, is to fall FORWARD! As long as you are not pushing yourself away…or shutting the other person out…you will continue to grow closer.
I’d really encourage you to read Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas.I read it and LOVE it! I skipped the chapter on sex since my wedding is still 5 months away…but I can’t wait to go back and read the book again whenever I am married. It’s great.
Much Love! 🙂
Post # 5
Another *really* good book is by Debbie Pearl, called ‘Created to be his help meet.’
This book was given to me as a gift and I felt so blessed and I also better understood how to make my marriage the best it can be!
Post # 6
Lately I’ve been wondering what the rate of divorce is for weddingbee readers as compared to other bridal websites. I’d like to think that we are more grounded and less caught up in the actual wedding…
Someone should do a study and compare the rates of divorce within a couple of years for various sites.
I do think many people don’t view marriage with the gravitas it deserves. I don’t feel that way here.
Post # 7
- Wedding: October 2020 - Auberge du Soleil
I think may people blame unhappiness on their partner/marriage when the real problem lies within that person. Your partner can never be your be all, end all. It is too bad that people think that everyone must be happy all the time to be in a good marriage.
Post # 8
- Wedding: June 2008 - Imperia Hotel (modern chic hotel)
I think that marriage is a work in progress. It is a commitement, and communication is key. Talking about the fact that one is unhappy is important… and finding a solution (other than seperation) is important as well. Its way to easy to say…ok i want a divorce (rather than work things out)
Majority of the time, if one person feels a certain way, it usually reflects both persons and the relationship in itself.
E.g. if one person cheats on the other… there is more than just the cheating to it. You need to analyize why it was done and majority of the time, its all about the relationship. Its a 2 person thing – anyways I think
Post # 9
Marriage to me is a sacred covenant. It’s too valuable to be thrown aside because of unhappiness. Besides, when both spouses are committed to eachother’s interests before their own, and "loving eachother better than themselves", joy will come from it. Selflessness is the key in my relationship with my fi now…and it’s going to take a lot more of that forebearance and forgiving when we’re married.
Divorce isn’t an option, so we will work hard to make sure it works and to keep our relationship on fire. It doesn’t just come naturally all the time!
Post # 10
- Wedding: June 2008 - Winery in the Gold Country
I’m not religous, but I truly believe that marriage is forever. This may sound sad, but I don’t think that it’s totally realistic to think I’ll totally be head over heels in love with my spouse forever. You are in love, you learn to live with eachother, and you find a way to co-exist. I mean I suppose that’s the worst case scenario (falling out of ‘love’ but finding your way in partnership)… I guess I’ve just braced myself to believe that there is a possibility I wont be "in love" forever with my partner, but that we will continue to work on being good partners in marriage and live up to our vows. I guess I fell in love with my husbad at such a young age that I never really felt a huge desire for finding my other half, or a life companion. I am very much an only child, and while I am so lucky to have found my husband, I sometimes think about how one day we wont be crazy about eachother, but that it will be my lifes mission to make it work, and continue to be, at the least, good companions to eachother until the end.
Post # 11
Religious or not, marriage is still a commitment. I told my husband, Divorce is not an option well before we took the plunge. It’s good to hear that people are holding marriage in such high regard. It takes work to maintain any relationship. A marriage is much closer and much more involved than a friendship so it takes more work, a deeper commitment and will give you a greater return on your investment. If you haven’t seen About Schmidt – rent it.
Post # 12
I think when a person is unhappy within themselves, that person will be unhappy with anyone they are with. If he/she decides to get divorced or separated becaushe he/she is unhappy, it won’t change with a new person. The initial happiness will only be temporary; be it lust, be it the initial excitement of dating. A friend of mine put it perfectly – you may have all the things you think you need for a marriage ie. ring, money, wedding, but really "You just need to like each other A LOT".
Post # 13
I hate to start out this way, but I suppose it depends. On the one hand, I absolutely agree with pinotnoir that you have to make a choice to be happy, and you have to find the resources for happiness within yourself. If you don’t have that capability, then you’re always going to be looking for something outside yourself to make you happy, and you’re going to have problems. If you’re unhappy married, it’s entirely possible you’re going to be just as unhappy divorced.
However, if you went into your marriage thinking that the other person would make you happy, maybe you got married for the wrong reasons. A husband, or a wife, might make you happy in the short term – the way a new house, or a new car, or a new job might – but eventually you’re going to figure out that there are problems with any job, or house, or relationship, and you have to make the best of it and work through them.
I do think that perhaps people who got married for the wrong reasons might be better off divorced. I have plenty of friends like that – he married her because he wanted a housekeeper and roommate; she married him because she wanted a baby. Neither one of them was happy, because they honestly never really wanted each other, but only the thing they thought the other person could give them. If that’s the deal you made, then when the thing you thought you wanted turns out not to make you happy after all, what is left? It would be great if you could work it out, but maybe the other person really deserves someone who actually loves them for themselves. I also have a lot of friends who are much happier in their second marriages than they were in their first, and I think it’s mostly because they learned something important about what they actually should be looking for in a relationship.
Post # 14
And, after all that, I’m so sorry about your friends Mr. Bee. It’s always sad when friends are unhappy, and it’s hard to see your friends make bad decisions for whatever reason. We have a couple who are our very good friends, and they are going through a really rough time. It’s obviously hard for them, but it’s hard for us too – mostly that we love them both, and hate to see them hurting, but also because they are being so stupidly hurtful to each other that sometimes we just want to shake them and ask what the heck they are thinking.
Post # 15
- Wedding: October 2007 - a beautiful church and hotel reception
I remember going through pre-martial counseling… and learning that being married is to "die to yourself." It gave me a deeper understanding that this marriage was not just to make me happy, but that we were going to serve each other until we die. I think that divorce should not even be an option in all stages of marriage.
I don’t agree with the whole notion of "I deserve to be happy"— that’s unrealistic, selfish and suggests unhealthy expectations. Life is going to be pretty crappy sometimes, whether you have a great husband/wife or not. I totally agree that being happy all the time doesn’t necessarily make a good marriage. I barely know what I’m talking about because I’m such a newbie but I’m pretty sure that the couples who have been married 50+ years can say that their marriage has lasted only because they’re Happy People. I’m sure there was a lot of sacrifice and unhappy moments sometime.
Post # 16
No one is happy all the time. If every time I felt upset, depressed, or unhappy I asked for a divorce we would not have made it past the first month! My husband and I made a commitment to eachother when we took our vows — that incluced "for better and for worse". I think this modern belief that our personal happiness comes before everything else at the expense of others is why the divorce rate is so high. A marriage joins TWO people, and therefore both people need to be considered. Those that do not understand this should stick to dating and not get married.