CAMPUS MAGAZINE: A Hell of a Marriage

Date posted: February 1, 2009


Back in March 2007, I wrote here – on that very same page – on the issue of early divorces:

The men and women who shared with me their sob stories are victims of our society. The double standards that they are brought up to adopt create what we call in business, an execution gap. There is a big void between where we really are and where we want to be; what we want and what we have; how we feel and how we act. We drown in an abyss of deluding illusions, unrealistic expectations, fake emotions, consuming demands, and the inevitable frustration. We get married for the wrong reasons; we mistake lust for love and confuse stability with stagnation. Mothers are over protective as though they want to suck us back into their wombs. Fathers discriminate between their sons and daughters. Women do not practice what they preach; they sing to the deaf ears of their male counterparts. Men do not meet the promises they make; they play to the sensitive tunes of the female vulnerability. Traditions, manners, taboos, and religion mix in one melting pot that defines stereotyped outlines for our ideal character and our perfect mate. We are dictated the answers to all the quizzes but we are left to face the final tests alone ? we fail with flying colors.

Are there "wrong" reasons for marriage? No!

I used to believe that people should get married because they are in love and because they want to share a life together. I also thought that those who got married for any other reason were on the wrong track – I was wrong! It is perfectly fine to get married for money, power, or even legitimate sex. There is nothing wrong with getting married to have kids. It is not a sin to get married because you are growing old and desperate. Are you giving in to social pressure? Do you feel that marriage will give you the freedom and independence you lack at your home? Do you need a woman to be your mother? Do you need a man to take care of your bills? Do you want to tease an ex? No matter what reason you have for getting married, I fully support you!

There are two main lies that can ruin your marriage regardless of your reasons; when you lie to yourself about your real needs in this marriage and/or when you lie to your partner about why you are getting married to him or her. Those two very common lies lead you to make promises you cannot keep and leads your partner to have expectations that will never be met. You are just paving the way for mutual frustration and inevitable failure. As much as I hate the comparison but marriage is just like a business partnership where the parties involved need to know, understand, and accept their roles. Transparency will limit any chances of foul play and assumptions. If you are getting married soon, I would like you to read the following statements, choose the ones that apply to you, share them with your partner, and then ask him/her to do that same. Do not try to be nice and sweet. There is no right and wrong answer. I am just trying to help you avoid a disastrous marriage.

o   We belong to the same social class

o   We grew up together

o   Our families get along well

o   We share the same education

o   We come from the same background

o   We share the same beliefs

o   Money has to marry money

o   I have always wanted to get married to a rich man/woman

o   You are so powerful

o   You come from a big well-known family

o   You will make me famous

o   You are famous

o   We love partying

o   We go clubbing together

o   Getting married to you is like an upgrade

o   With your money and my power we make a great team

o   With your looks and my genes we will have brilliant kids

o   We share the same dreams

o   I love talking to you

o   I respect you

o   I look up to you

o   You are a virgin

o   You are sexually experienced

o   I see us having sex day and night

o   You are so sexy

o   I love kids

o   I want to have many kids

o   I do not want to have kids

o   You are my best friend

o   I love how you make me feel like a little girl

o   You remind me of my mom

o   I love how you are so tender

o   You will make a great mom

o   You will make a great dad

o   I am tired of being single

o   I am tired of being independent

o   Finally I will have a home

o   Finally people will leave me alone

o   I have been in and out of so many bad relationships ? I feel secure with you

o   I have been in and out of so many bad relationships ? I am saving my reputation

o   We will travel a lot

o   I will finally get to see the world

o   You saved me from my parents

o   You are religious

o   You will do anything to please me

o   We laugh a lot when we are together

o   We are both conservative

o   We share the same political views

o   I like your friends

o   You are organized and tidy

o   You are clean and hygienic

o   I see us growing old together

o   I want you to depend on me

o   I do not want you to depend on me

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is sex

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is love

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is trust

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is communication

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is kids

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is fun

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is money

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is family

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is getting close to God

o   The most important thing to me in our relationship is social image

Some of those points are too direct and you might feel embarrassed to share them with your partner ? please don?t! The whole purpose of this exercise is to get you to be honest with yourself and to be as honest with your significant other. Points dealing with personal habits and preferences make good topics for discussion and conversations. You might also feel limited when addressing the last ten points, I did that on purpose ? all the ten points are necessary but I want you to choose ?the most important? element in your opinion for the success of your marriage. I want you to be clear about your priorities and to share them. Some points are of an intimate nature, be it about sex or religion ? this is the time to talk about those issues.

As I mentioned earlier, there is no ?wrong reason for a marriage? but there are people who lie about, or fake, the reasons for such a bond. I often get problems from people who wonder ?why did he get married to me if he did not love me??, ?why did she get married to me if she is not physically attracted to me??, or ?why did we get married if we cannot talk about the past or the present or the future?? Many couples complain that their partner changed after marriage, that their life is empty, that they do not remember why they got married, that they regret getting married, and that they have nothing in common with their partner. Unfortunately, people ask the right questions in the wrong timing and this article is a little push in the direction of self-awareness and openness.

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