Remember the TV series Married with Children , 1987-1997, and that theme song, ” Love and Marriage, love and Marriage they go together like a horse and carriage.” Speaking of the subject love and Marriage, Tina Turner had a hit song, What’s love got to do with it? For the majority of people who are married they will say they said ” I do” because of love. There is a movies produced by Tyler Perry that ask the question, Why Did I Get Married?
I read an article by Maggie Gallagher: What’s Marriage Got to Do With Love?
Why do lovers marry? For centuries the answer might have been self-evident, but in today’s world where cohabitation is more bourgeois then bohemian, it’s an open question. I posed it not long ago to a group of young, college-educated women. Krista, a 23 year old writer, tried to explain why its so important to her that she and her live -in boyfriend get married. ” I just love the words ” husband and ‘wife”, she says, almost ruefully. ” I know the words are archaic, but I just love the whole idea.”
Krista, like the other young women in the room, lives with the omnipresent reality of divorce. they know a marriage license is no guarantee of permanence. Sex and affection they already have from their boyfriends. Yet, women like Krista long, almost irrationally, for the nuptial bond. the words ” I love you have been drained, through overuse, of all special meanings. and the act of love no longer signifies union. All that is left is this fail, eroding word, ” marriage,” packed with centuries of loving, living growing old together, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.
American are marrying people-like Krista, nine out of 10 adult women tie the knot at least once. And yet Americans also have the highest divorce rate in the western world. How do we reconcile the cultural contradiction.
What say you?