Team Mates

Marriage has been on my mind this week.  I’m glad to be in a marriage, especially with the right person.  We hadn’t really thought things through when we got married, so I wouldn’t dare give advice on choosing a mate.  We were impetuous young people who happened to get it right.

I heard a discussion on arranged marriages in India.  The upshot of the conversation was that, over the long run, arranged marriages seem to be as good, or better, than marriages where people make their own choice.  I wouldn’t like to have a mate chosen for me, but since marriage is about adapting to each other as we change, why not start immediately?

Newsweek magazine ran an article on research that followed thousands of couples who were contemplating divorce at one point, and then interviewed them 20 years later.  Those who remained married were dramatically happier than those who got divorced – statistically.  That doesn’t mean that many who chose divorce didn’t make the right choice, but on balance, sticking it out was most often a good choice.

Now and then I read about a famous couple who have an “open” marriage.   I’m not exactly sure what the rules are, but it sounds more like dating than being married.  Not even going steady, really.

Some sects practice polygamy, or multiple spouses.  At first blush, that sounds like fun, from the husband’s point of view.  Upon further review, as they say in the NFL, it is probably a nightmare.  One wife to apologize to on a daily basis is enough

I come from a long line of married people.  Not everybody can say that anymore, with so many single parents having children who become single parents, ad infinitum.  Since one of the best predictors of financial stability is having two parents living in the same home, it’s probably not a healthy trend to have fewer marriages.  We haven’t done a good job of teaching young men to respect women, and young women to respect themselves.

In the card game pinochle, a “marriage” consists of a king and a queen of the same suit.  That’s all I know about pinochle.  Maybe human marriages work well when the couple treat each other as a king and a queen without either feeling that they are one.

I’ll soon be walking one of our daughters down the aisle, and welcoming another son-in-law to our family.  I have every confidence that they will have a good life together because they make a good team.

Maybe that’s what marriage is all about.  Sure, sometimes you have disagreements, but when the chips are down, you’re a team, and in this crazy world, it’s sure nice to have at least that one person to depend on, and to have your back.

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