There is lots of interesting material about the build-up to a marriage. The process of joining two people in a bond that lasts until death, but in practice is increasingly cut short by divorce.
I used to be the traditionalist of a white wedding but in reality, as I have aged I have seen many of my friends and family including my own parent’s divorce and it has made me take a step back from something that I thought I really wanted in my life. I think I still do.
To write this blog I have read a lot of research and articles about the course of a relationship that can last as many as seven or eight decades. I couldn’t believe the suggested timescales that people have advised in order to ‘pop the question.’ It was generally considered that after 3 years was a perfect time whereas others stated, (obviously depending on the individual’s ages), a typical time frame should be 5 years.
Researchers highlighted that personalities change, bodies age and romance withers and of course no marriage is free of conflict. One of the most significant events of the 20th century was the changing role and improving status of women in private and public life, along with greater expectations for happiness. Those same changes brought about a much talked-about rise in divorce rates. Infidelity and financial upheavals are significant causes of divorce, but the major causes are emotional; partners grow emotionally distant, experience disappointments because of unmet expectations, or develop separate visions of life.
In addition to wanting someone with whom they can raise children and build a secure life, those considering marriage now expect their partner to be their best friend. These romantic-comedy great expectations, in part thanks to Hollywood, can be difficult to live up to!
I guess what I was trying to work out is it worth getting married or is it better to stay as we are in a happy relationship without the paperwork. A break up is bad enough without the added extra of a divorce. The dissolution of a marriage is almost always an unhappy event, at the very least marked by disappointment and the loss of dreams and expectations. In addition, there are usually many legal, financial, parental, emotional, and practical aspects that require changes in responsibilities and routines, and it can take people years to regain equilibrium. Nevertheless, divorce serves an important function in legally and emotionally freeing people to form a more stable happier relationship.
It is estimated that in the U.S. a third of marriages end in divorce. However, this is on the decline which researchers have suggested maybe because of educated people are marrying later when they are more mature and have had previous relationship experience.
With marriage now deeply rooted in personal choice, people do need an of skills to work out the inevitable difficulties and disappointments that arise and lead to divorce.
I am in a relationship and yes I do want the white wedding but, my partner has already been there and got the divorce paper. Will he want to do it again?
By Kate Ball