What a modern age. We nearly live in a post-marital time, where children born out of wedlock are common and the marriage that does get entered into is broken as easily as fine glassware. What does it mean to be married? It used to be this solemn vow that two people made to never part, that sanctified and solidified a bond between these two people stronger than death. When did our words become so fragile, so changeable?
I suppose we shouldn't generalise; there are plenty of marriages out there that work, where children are born into happy families instead of uncertain times. (Are there any certain times?) And marriage doesn't have to be all about the children. There's another thing—love—that's meant to keep people together.
And love does. Love exists. Love makes us do the crazy stuff that we'd always said we'd never do but, when you put it in the context of being in love, you get a different perspective and suddenly you're taking the leap. Love gives us hope when there shouldn't be any, gives us a reason to get up in the morning. So when that love is challenged, or disrespected, or thought of carelessly, sure, we get a little agitated. It's not the way things were meant to be. This isn't what we signed up for.
One thing is for sure: there can be no selfishness in love. Love itself should be selfless, and marriage, by extension, should be the most selfless thing out there. When we start to act selfishly in marriage, we start to take away the very foundation of our marriages. We start to say that we, our selves, are more important that other's selves, when marriage is meant to guarantee that, while you're looking out for her, she's looking out for you. (Or he, or ze, or it, or however people want to identify in this gender-neutral age.) That's what the contract is. "Love one another."
Pain and sorrow, loss and want
Are storms that we can weather,
As we can with joy and hope
And love; that is, together.
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