Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A bandaid won't always fix it

Aw look at the cute photo below? Isn't it great?

Well truth be told, I hate it. I saw it posted by a friend of mine a few months ago, got pissed off, and put it on the list of things to blog about. I just saw it again tonight, and I'm taking it as a sign. Sorry everyone, I'm betting you hate this kind of post, but seriously, it gets right up in my craw. I mean, it does have a good sentiment, and I bet that whomever put it together had good intentions, but I gotta say, it brings out the deep dark defensive in me, and not only for the obvious reasons, because I've "thrown away" two marriages, but because it totally disregards the fact that the relatively current societal acceptance of divorce is often the safer, saner choice for people.

"Broken" is a big gaping hole of a word, is it not? Subjective if I've ever heard it. Broken like you had an argument and your wife went to her mother's to spend the night? Or broken like your wife cheated on you one time and has vowed to never do it again and you're both working on it? Or broken like your husband dislocated your collar bone and broke your two ribs?

1000 blessings to all of those of you who have managed to pick a mate that is lasting -- someone who makes your heart sing, and loves your children (if you have them) as much as you do, and appreciates and tolerates your individual brand of crazy. And, most importantly, has never thrown the proverbial frying pan at you. Give thanks. Offer up gratitude. Yours is a blessed life.

But to assume that sticking it out is always the best choice? It's just plain naive, isn't it? Or maybe simply self righteous?

You have no idea what other people are going through. Is it better to lock yourself in a room while your husband beats on the door and berates you in drunken rage, waking up the children?  To tough it out, so that you can claim that you stuck with it? Or is it better to get the f*uk out?

Should your friend stay with a repeatedly philandering husband for the kids' sake, even though she is dead inside, so as not to rock the boat and keep that marriage intact? I mean, what would the neighbors think?!

How does that effect the kids?

And what the hell "time" is it that is  being referred to above anyway? The time before women had a chance to make it solo? Few job prospects, the cultural stigma of divorce, her only societal identity via her father or husband?

It's 2013; barely, really --  2014 is just around the corner. This image seems quite dated to me. I get why it appeals to people. I do. Marriage isn't easy, and my guess is that even the strongest of marriages get tested by things challenging enough to break weaker marriages apart, and that is its appeal. Stand strong. Hang tough. You can do it. It's worth it.

And I bet it is, a lot of the time.

But it isn't always.

And to have this sappy photo telling me it's simple -- it pisses me off.

But then again, I'm the person who opted for the epidural, I also opt for Novocaine at the dentist. I'm not in this life so that I can claim I toughed it out the most. That would be f-ing stupid, would it not?! Because really, when it comes down to it, who cares how much you suffered other than you? I'm betting the neighbors don't really even notice.


Sometimes throws things away in Central PA said...

great post and I please know that I am eternally grateful for marrying someone who "appreciates and tolerates your individual brand of crazy."
I find it funny that the person who sits in her own sweat in positions that I can't even pull off in a pool, goes with the epidural :)
You know you're a grown-up when you don't care what the neighbors think!

Pat said...

Right on, Beth.
I know when the tim is right, you will find someone who adores your craziness. It took me two tries but I did and I am way crazier than you.
Love, Mom

Me, You, or Ellie said...

It really should say "How do you manage to stay together so long... with those hideous outfits?"

I suppose there's an implied asterisk in most of these well intentioned yet somehow insulting proverbs. I choose to see one, anyway. You've throw nothing away, you've busted your ass to make lemons out of rotten fruit and you've done an admirable job of it.

I love you, screw 'em if they don't get it.


mom c said...

Bravo Beth.... love,Mom C

Kendra Keating said...

Seriously, the whole notion of marriage is dated. Single for life is my motto, yay for artificial ensemination and I can't wait until they make robots that can make love like a real man and take at the trash and clean up the dog poop!


Beth said...

Oy my goodness, Kendra, that robot comment made me laugh out loud!!

And Jacquie, ha!, how true -- they are turly hideous outfits. Reason enough to stay single, lol.

Love you people!


Me, You, or Ellie said...

Come on, Beth, tell us what you really think!

You rock, gfriend, and let those who would ever deign to say otherwise go hump themselves.

That'd be a show, huh?

Love you.
xoxox Ellie