I remember when my family moved when I was in grade 4. I changed schools, and even though my new home was only about an hour from my old home, the mindset was completely different in my new class. At my new school, the other kids were "going out" with each other. I never really understood the expression, since they never went "out" anywhere, but nevertheless, that was what they called it. That was the beginning of the dating phase of my generation.
Next phase - getting serious. That was "going out", but you actually talked to each other and in a sense, owned each other. The previous "going out" didn't actually mean that you liked each other, or even that you wanted to be friends...it was just a social status thing that meant you were popular enough for someone of the opposite sex to circle the "yes" on the note that asked if you wanted to be their girlfriend or boyfriend.
When I was 17, a new stage developed - engagement. Yep, early as 17, couples were getting ready to tie the knot. My college roomie was first to do so. That was huge, and a few years later, I followed suit and married the best man I've ever known.
Now I'm 28 years old, and entering into a brand new life stage - divorce. Not me, personally (see paragraph above - Rich is awesome!), but it's becoming an increasingly normal thing for my friends to announce they're going Splitsville. I admit, I am a bit naive when it comes to these things. It has caught me off guard.
I understand and I support the need to leave an abusive relationship. I also encourage these couples to seek counselling (together or alone), and to mend their relationship if it is safe to do so.
I have a hard time, though, with the lies of it all - the comments like, "The kids will be happier if I'm happy", or "We've fallen out of love (see note below)" or, worse "He's emotionally abusive to me" when in fact, he's simply an inconsiderate jerk. That sucks, but let's call it as it is, no?
The next stage - remarriage. Ah, yes, the second chance that boasts a 70% divorce rate compared to the 50% (or is it higher, now?) of first marriages. The stress of blended families, court battles and restraining orders against jealous first wives. Fun.
I'm not trying to teach anything with this post. I'm not going to offer advice, or cite verses or quote Dr. Phil (cough, cough, trying not to roll my eyeballs). I'm just writing about something I wish wasn't an issue.
Here's the quote I mentionned above. I love it because it's true:
"Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don't know how to replenish it's source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of witherings, of tarnishings." Anais Nin