Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Marriage in the Age of "Me, Me, Me...."

The subject of divorce comes up quite a bit in our sad, secular world. Few families are left unscathed by this blight and because it's because such a common event some don't even think that it's that bad. With the current secular views on individual rights and pleasure, it's surprising that any relationships survive more then a few months, much less a few years.

I've been thinking about this thoroughly depressing topic a lot lately, because two members of our family have recently separated and the wife is telling anyone who will listen that she's going to file for divorce. Let's call them Joe and Jane. No one in Joe's family has ever been divorced. Every member of Jane's family who has been married has been divorced, from her parents to her siblings.

Joe and Jane have had an extremely tough year. He lost his job at the start of the recession and hasn't been able to find work. They are so far behind on their mortage payments that it's pretty much inevitable that they're going to lose their house. They have two children, one who's already in grade school and the other who is just barely out of diapers. Life has not been easy. In fact, it's felt downright unfair.

Now, it seems, that Jane has decided that she wants to go out and have a good time. She's kicked her husband out of the house and her children have lost their beds so that her friends can live in the house. Most weekend she dumps the kids off at her inlaws house so that she can "go out." She had her older child at an age that is now considered "young" by our society's standards (21) and feels cheated by life. She wants to go out and do the things she "missed out on" when she was younger. She wants to "have fun."

And that's exactly what she is doing.

Unfortunately the kids don't seem to be having much "fun." They seem down right devastated that their family has been torn apart. Even the little one, at the ripe old age of two, knows that something is very, very wrong. But that's not her problem, is it? She's not supposed to live her life for her children, is she? She's supposed to do whatever makes her feel "fulfilled" and this year that doesn't feel like marriage.

Our society tells us that if you aren't happy in your marriage you have the "right" to leave. In fact you have the "right" to destroy your family just as you have the "right" to destroy your unborn child.

In our culture doing what "feels good" has been elevated to a god-like status. Many people seem to believe that we're supposed to be "happy" all the time, ignoring the part of the vows that run "for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health" as well as the "'till death do us part" part of the vows.

The part of feminism that brought us artificial contraception and abortion tells women that if they aren't "happy" in their marriage, they should leave. Marriage isn't seen as something that's forever, it's something that lasts while it's convenient.

If you view marriage in that light it's surprising that anyone makes it to their 50th anniversary. No one is going to be happy all the time. Life is a series of ups and downs. Couples who make it through the downs often find that they have been brought closer by the trials...

Please pray for this young family. They need all the prayers they can get if they are going to make it through this tough time.


  1. I will certainly say a prayer for them! I know how rough it is to sit on the sidelines and see a marriage start to fall apart. I fear that that's the road my sister's marriage may go down soon, and it worries me. She too isn't happy, but it seems like she feels as though marriage should always be fun and happy. That when it gets rough, you just give up. It's hard to watch because I see it so differently.

    Then my cousin who married at 18 I think it was after giving birth to their first child while in highschool ended up divorcing after something like 6 years. Now she's out partying all the time and bringing guys over. I can see how sad her 2 children are. I'm sure it's awkward for them to hear their mother talking about other men so casually. And for them to have to keep meeting different men and then have her break up with them. It just isn't healthy. I often wonder where the love for their children went. When did it become solely about the adult?

    It's unfortunate that we live in such a world that says you should always be happy. Because it just isn't true. No matter what there's going to be some hardships no matter how much you love someone.

  2. Prayers for your sisters marriage too, I remember reading that she was having problems on your blog a awhile back. I know that I wish I could hand out Archbishop Fulton Sheen's "Three to Get Married" to every married couple, but it doesn't make sense if the couple doesn't believe in God (the couple in our family both identify themselves as atheists). It's so sad to watch!


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