Everyone’s heard that divorce rates in most of the Western world are somewhere around 50%. And everyone knows that more and more couples are choosing to live together instead of get married. On top of it all, there are many out there who would prefer not to marry at all and prefer to date for the rest of their lives. This raises a lot of questions about whether marriage is dead or not.
I Don’t Have to be Married to Show My Love
You’ve heard it heaps of times before “I don’t need to get married to show my partner that I love them, that I trust them and that I will be faithful to them”. For a lot of folks they express this kind of commitment when they ask the other one to move in with them or when they invite them over to meet their family. Anytime someone expresses any kind of commitment to their partner is great. When a couple is in love and want to show it I say bless them both. Commitment between a couple is a beautiful thing and It’s not anybody else’s place to tell them whether they really are committed or not simply by how they choose to express their commitment to each other.
If you’re truly committed to your partner, though, what’s so bad about showing it by getting married? As a marriage counselor in Denver, CO, I see couples for lots of different reasons – infidelity, boredom, poor communication, etc. And underlying most couples’ difficulties is a fundamental, biological fear of being rejected or being left alone by the one they love. There’s something especially hurtful about putting your love and trust in someone only to get rejected or have it not reciprocated in some other way. It makes you feel used, hurt and foolish. So naturally individuals try to protect themselves from such abandonment – it’s protective and instinctual to do so. We inherited this protective trait from our primitive ancestors.
Marriage is the ultimate sign of commitment
Taking the plunge and getting married is one way to show your partner that despite the thousands of years of biological conditioning, that you’re willing to take the extra step to show your commitment and devotion to them. It also shows your partner that despite the current divorce rates and other practical reasons for not getting married that you’re willing to put your faith and trust in them to get married anyway.
Sure, there are hundreds of reasons not to get married. There are lots of reasons to believe that such an optimistic idea of marriage is antiquated. But taking the plunge and getting married shows your partner that you’re willing to show that level of commitment to them anyway. And what could be more romantic than that?
Marriage is Not Dead
As a guest on a radio show, I was asked whether marriage was dead or not. My response was a resounding no! Like Batman, marriage is more of a symbol than it is an event. Marriage is a symbol of something so much more important than just a couple choosing to live their life together. Marriage is the ultimate symbol of love, commitment, trust and complete fidelity. As long as there are couples who wish to express these messages to each other, marriage will continue to be alive and well.
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