Marital Bliss

I agreed with the majority results of this survey, which said that, out of nine factors to a successful marriage, things like chore-sharing are more helpful than things like children in a good marriage.  Having been married and childless for 11 years, and having what I like to think is a rather successful and solid marriage, I too can say that children are not an absolute essential for two people to exist in a state of connubial joy.  I believe that a marriage is essentially what is created when 2 people are wed; it is a thing that exists outside of those two people, if you will, the metaphysical offspring of their union.  Children bring another dimension to that, but the success of the marriage does not depend on the presence or absence of them.

But then they go on to explain this shift in viewing children as relatively less important to a successful marriage (down to 8 out of 9 as opposed to 3 out of 9 in 1990) by saying:

“The popular culture is increasingly oriented to fulfilling the X-rated fantasies and desires of adults,” she wrote in a recent report. “Child-rearing values — sacrifice, stability, dependability, maturity — seem stale and musty by comparison.”

 And to this I object. So the past 11 years of my success in marriage has been based on x-rated fantasy instead of sacrifice, stability, dependability and maturity?  I doubt that I would have made it to 11, with or without children, without the last four qualities or at least their continuing development.  Sheesh.  Since when has sacrifice been stale? Since when has maturity been musty?  Someone needs to think of a few better reasons than that to explain the cultural realization that children are not the be-all, end-all of the married state and that a successful marriage is not necessarily due to procreating and perpetuating the species.  Marriage and family are not the same thing. To make it the easiest on everyone, it’s best to be able to have the latter together with the former but the latter is not necessary for the former and is not a component of the former as the former must exist and thrive in and of itself, first and foremost for itself and then for the latter, most especially for the latter.

It just seems to me that to give such a simplistic explanation is an insult to successful, childless (whether by choice or by biology) marriages everywhere.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. The Mom
    Jul 02, 2007 @ 10:56:45

    Amen.

    Reply

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