On Marriage: Let's call the whole thing off

This is not actually my title - it is the title of an article found on MSN today. The author has determined to end her 20 year marriage. She had an affair and decided she didn't want to put the effort into falling back in love with her husband. The article, though, is more about whether or not marriage is still relevant. Apparently, marriage made sense 100 years ago when much of the world was agricultural and a large family was neccessary for the success of the family business. Today though we have Merry Maids, landscaping businesses, white-collar jobs, and fast food restaurants. Single parenthood isn't so unusual - in fact it's probably become the rule instead of the exception. And procreating isn't really a necessity either.

Some people shouldn't have children. I'm probably one of the them. Ask my mother. My sisters were the ones who wanted large families. My oldest sister was going to have 20 children - adoption was part of the plan. She has two - a girl who just turned 16 and a boy who will be 18 in August. In my mind's eye, they are still 7 and 5. Me, on the other hand, ended up with a total of 7. Actually 8 if you count my husband. Most days I do. I think I'm a good mom. I've seen worse. I've heard of better, but can't say I've actually witnessed any super-moms.

Religiously, I had to get married to have kids. Realistically, I'm a much better mom than I am a wife. I admit it's nice having a second set of eyes and hands around to manage the kids but not necessary. Besides, I have a 14-year-old son who can be that second set pretty well. What does that mean for me? I'm not sure yet. I believe in the institution of marriage but not because of how it works to my advantage in this life. I don't buy the whole "in love" thing either. It's nice to have that, but there has to be more. Being "in love" isn't sufficient for the marriage to survive.

I want a partner and I want to be a partner. It's nice to be loved, but I want to be respected and honored and trusted. I want to be relevant.


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