This morning I heard that Statistics Canada is no longer tracking divorce rates. Hmmm… one reason they said is because it will save them money. But the question here is why the hell does it cost so much to track these stats? Are there really THAT many people getting divorced? Another reason they said is because more and more people are living together for a long period of time without tying the knot.
What kind of hope does this provide all of us hopeless romantics who envision our lives as one big love story straight out of the movies?
I’ve imagined that I will meet the man of my dream (*ahem prince charming of course*) and we would fall madly in love. The kind of love that NEVER fades. The kind of love that people are jealous of. And the kind of love where you never disagree on anything (as if that exists). I imagined that he would propose to me in the most magical way possible. Maybe by spelling it out in roses on a large open field surrounded by willow trees, or maybe flying me to Paris and proposing at the bottom of the Eifel Tower (although, I’ve heard that it’s not as romantic there as I thought. There are a lot of tourists, apparently). We would have the most romantic wedding and not a single person would have a dry eye in the house. Our parents would buy us our first home (HAHAHA!!!!!) and we would go on the honeymoon of any newlyweds dream (I’m still deciding whre that would be). We would move into our beautiful home with a white picket fence and a wraparound porch. We would have three children, two boys and a girl, and I would be a stay at home mom and… So apparently I’ve imagined my entire life to be a Hollywood love story.
But tell me, what’s wrong with dreaming?
Well, that’s exactly it, they are dreams. The reality is that there are people who get married and are madly in love and stay together for 60 years. And then there are people who get married too quickly, believing they are in love, and a couple of years later it doesn’t work out. And there are people who get to know each other, fall in love, and get married but fifteen years later divorce. But the overall trend here is that people give up on their dreams.
The boyfriend’s parents have been married for 26 years. And the boyfriend’s grandparents have been married for over 60. And my parents, well they divorced when I was 8.
This past weekend the boyfriend and I talked about what the difference is between a couple that stays together for 26 years versus one that doesn’t. I asked him “have your parents ever had a rough time in their marriage? And if so, how did they handle it?” He really didn’t know the answer. Part of not knowing is because he’s a guy and most guys wouldn’t ask their parents something like that. The other reason he didn’t know the answer is because he really never saw too much “unhappiness” coming from his parent’s relationship.
But what he has noticed is how supportive they are of each other. He’s noticed that no matter how wrong one of them may be, the other one supports them 100%. His mother will wake up super early on a Saturday morning to go for a long run with his father because that’s what his father loves to do. His father will stand by his mother’s side when she makes decisions/comments about her children’s lives, even if she is wrong. This may be the biggest challenge I will have in my relationships. Thanks to my stubbornness I may have some hurdles to overcome when it comes to 100% supporting my spouse.
Another thing the boyfriend and I talked about was giving up. This brings me back to letting go of your dreams. We all (well most of us) fight for what we believe in. I fight for finding the job of my dreams. I’ll keep fighting until I do. So why can’t we fight for the relationship of our dreams? We fell in love with our spouse for a reason, and when you made those vows at the altar, they weren’t just empty words. At that moment, you were living your dream. So when things get rough, what do most people do? They give up, because divorce is so easy these days. But if we all fought for our dreams, then we could work at keeping the relationship alive.
I’ve never been married, but from what I can tell, marriage is not easy. It takes some self sacrificing, some hard work and a ton of team effort. Just like buying your dream home, or going on your dream vacation, everything requires a little bit of work and a little bit of time (and usually a lot of money).
Fight for your dreams. We have them for a reason!