Boy meets girl, girl says yes. Boy and girl start dating, boy and girl get really serious. Boy proposes, girl says yes, boy and girl get married. Boy says I do, girl says I do, boy and girl live happily ever after. This is the case for most people, or so most people think. Well I’m wondering how is this so, when the divorce rate in America has already surpassed 60%. We focus on the expectations of marriage, but what about the human element of marriage. Well, the human element; what is the human element?
When I say the human element, I mean is monogamy normal? Is it normal for someone to meet another person at a young age. They get married, stay together until the day they both or one past away. And even after the death of a spouse you’re sometimes expected to never marry again. It sounds like a great idea initially. I mean, you get to have a companion for the rest of your life. Whenever you’re sick there is someone there to care for you. You lose your job, there’s someone to aid in picking up the slack. Even a parent who can assist in the raising of a child so you’re doing the work alone.
What about more of the human aspects, the biological. Why when people say I do, it becomes I don’t, I can’t, and I won’t? Why when marriage comes into play the consistency of the things you did before diminishes? I am not married, but from my basic understanding of the human species I have observed certain characteristics as to way relationships fall off. For starters, a reason as to why most fail is quite obvious, money.
When you meet in your 20’s it’s ok to have money woes. You live in a 400-500 square foot apartment. Hey, who cares, as long as you’re having a good time right. Wrong because with marriage comes even higher standards and expectations. That 400-500 square foot apartment must be upgraded to 2,000-3,000 square feet. That cute apartment in the city becomes a home in a suburb. That bicycle turns into a caravan or SUV. And that takeout becomes groceries each month. Why, well it’s because children typically come soon. Like that riddle, “First comes marriage, then comes a baby.”
Now you have yourself a home, with a mortgage payment. You have a child, car note, utilities, student loans, food, and medical bills. Then the problems start because the bills start stacking up. From the bills comes the arguments, then comes the sleeping in separate rooms. After that comes the separation, then divorce. Money just drains so much from you and compounds problems if you have money woes. But there are other issues such as attraction that ends marriages as well.
When you first meet someone you’re attracted, but marriage comes into play and attractions become second to the marriage. Like I said I am looking at the human element of what we are as people. Our human attractions toward someone comes from a desire. A desire to what the other person. Desire goes away because the thing that brought them together goes away. For instance, if I desire to buy a luxury vehicle, I’m attracted to having this car. Then once I buy the car the desire eventually goes away. People look at you at go wow, nice car, but to you it’s just a car. Desire leaves, why because you might need a paint job. Give your car a new look, so you look forward to driving the car.
Continuing a desire for something makes you want it. But the less desire conversely makes you not want it. Which brings me to the next reason marriages fail. You just know they’ll be there everyday, so hey why worry about missing out; they’ll be here tomorrow. In dating, you don’t know they’re going to be here tomorrow, savior the moment today. Taking for granted something is here today and tomorrow is something we all do. “Why call the person now, I’ll wait until they get home.” “Why keep myself looking good, I’m only with so and so.”
And there you have it, I’m not doing that, I can’t do that, I won’t do that. But in dating I’ll do it, I can, and I will. Human relationships diminish because we as people need to continue to desire something to continue to want it and work to keep it. What happens when Millennials turn 40 or 50 years of age? I just wonder what will come of my generation if it’s 60% today.