Home » Health » When Love, and Marriage, Go to the Dogs

The state most relationships are in is worrisome. To see just how worrisome it is, one just needs to flick through the newspapers.

Everyday couples are dragging each other to court to try and have their problems resolved by the courts. Some husbands and wives who live in the same house are even asking the courts to ensure that they can observe peace towards each other.

Imagine when you approach a third party to ensure that you are peaceful towards each other? Others claim maintenance from spouses they live with. What makes things go to such levels?

I have been talking with men and women over the past weeks to try and find out what is happening in most marriages. The responses were truly disappointing. There are quite a number of men and women who say they are only together because of the children.

When a couple comes together, it is usually because they are two consenting adults who love each other and would like to spend time in each other’s company for as long as possible. Pastors actually teach that children are an additional blessing but the whole story starts and ends with the man and the woman in question.

These two should enjoy each other’s company and invest in building and having a relationship while also prioritising their parental roles and responsibilities.

Thus it becomes disturbing when a couple stays together only for the children. What happens when they grow up? I picked something disturbing from these people who claim to be in marriage only for the children’s sake.

They all believe that love and marriage do not necessarily go hand in hand. Quite a number of men and women said they do not necessarily love the people they are married to anymore, but they stay to honour their obligations towards the children, acquired assets and even family and societal expectations. A woman from the leafy suburbs said she will hang on because she cannot let someone else enjoy the fruits of her labour.

She said the same applies to her husband who would also never leave her because he cannot imagine another man enjoying the wealth that they have.

As a result, she said, they live separate lives with her husband having a known small house and children while she enjoys luxuries others just dream of.

Shocking, isn’t it?

Some said they are only in their marriages because they cannot stomach the shame that comes from not being married. This includes those with abusive partners.

Some women said they are in marriage only because they cannot make ends meet on their own without their husbands’ financial muscle. Many men said they stay only because they care about their children otherwise they have someone else to love outside the home.

So shocking are the stories I heard that someone even claimed that their wife should be glad that they have a small house that gives them love on the side or they would have since divorced the wife.

Are we saying marriage does not work anymore or that it cannot be a fun and loving place to be in? Do people not understand that marriage is a lifelong commitment?

Some women even said marriage must come with an expiry date after five years. She said the reason people are cheating on each other is because after a certain number of years, the feelings of excitement and deep love just fizzle out. But is that not where the commitment aspect comes in? Should we not remind ourselves of the vows then, to forsake all others?

Why should the fact that your partner’s body has changed kill all the love? Are you not growing older yourself? These are the questions men who seek to replace their women with a newer and younger version should ask themselves?

Gratifyingly there are some couples who still speak of the need for people to go back to seek the word of God and those who said marriage is the foundation of everything and couples should always focus on being a better person at individual level so that their partner can cope with being in their lives.

One marriage counsellor said something interesting. He said the other problem people face today is that they are marrying and getting into relationships for all the wrong reasons with money and desperation being key.

Common beliefs and value systems, which would bind couples in the past, are no longer as g. Prayer and communication, which are necessary, have been relegated. In fact some people are meeting via social networking platforms.

There is no courtship anymore.

No one takes time to know the other person. It is all so fast and as a result, it also blows up fast. The results are what we see around us now.

However, all is not lost. All it takes is commitment.

All we need to understand is how bad it is for the children when there is strife in the home or parents break up.

When we do this, we will realise that keeping up appearances does not work and neither does the concept of just cheating on each other while living together.

Breaking up willy nilly also does not always present the best option. Instead there is need for couples to work at their relationships. If you can only see the negative things in your partner years later, chances are they see the same qualities in you. So both parties must give as much as they can. Relationships are just like gardens. They need work to flourish. Therein lies the difference!


Source : The Herald

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