Something that’s been coming up again and again in my world is the subject of divorce. My own divorce will be final this summer…but it’s other couples divorces that have been brought to my attention of late. Those of friends, aquaintances, family…and they all seem to be young couples. Now, there could be, and are, many many reasons for this. We are the McDonalds generation, bred for instant gratification…we are so used to getting exactly what we want that marriage and compromise (the C word), just don’t resonate with us…the list of reasons goes on and on. I have my own theory, which doesn’t ring true with everyone but I know for me it did, and the same goes for many friends of mine. We are women; they are men. We want romance and passion and protection; they want frequent sex and thriftiness and the occasional intelectual conversation. And both of us are not getting what we want. I’m not sure about all the women out there, but when I was married it was a point of pride to me to the kind of wife I knew my husband, and every husband would want. I would remind him to book tee off times with friends because he needed a break…I would discuss politics with him at coffee, I would make him lunches to take to work and I would do my best to fulfill any fantasies he related to me. What I didn’t get in my marriage was the passion, romance, and protection I needed. In hindsight, I think it all started with the proposal. It was…NOT a proposal. And I really should have said no. Dating is the start of a relationship, true…but the proposal is the start of the two of you being intentionally united for life. Hopefully. My Mom always told me, start as you mean to go. So really, the proposal sets the tone for your whole marriage. Ha ha, not to overstate it, but it does. The reality is, if a man wants to spend the rest of his life with you and only you, he will dispense the effort necesary to give you the proposal you want. The proposal you can relate to all of your friends and gloat about. He needs to know you, and figure out what you would LOVE…and with the internet and all the other resources we have nowadays, there is no excuse for not figuring out the perfect proposal for YOU, the woman he loves. It’s his job. And it’s your job to demand it. Now I know I may sound like a tyrant using words like “demand” here…but I really do believe one of the huge reasons for the breakdown of marriages everywhere are unmet desires…and we as women have desires that our men do not fundamentally understand. I have come to the conclusion through my own failed marriage that I need to first be aware of what it is that really want from my partner and our life together, and then specifically tell him what I’d like. I used to think that telling him would ruin it…that the pleasure of him giving me what I wanted would be usurped by him only doing it as directed. But you know what? That’s bullshit. We need to teach our men how to treat us, and men as I have learned, need very specific direction. It doesn’t ruin the result…it sets us up for success!
So, about the proposal: I don’t want to hear any more of you being disapointed by the way your future husband asks you to spend the rest of your life with him. If you feel that the way he asks is not the what you’d like to tell your friends and family, tell him to try again! My husband asked me if “I’d like to marry him”. Confused, I replied “duh!”, after which he told me to get my ring out of the trunk of the car. Should I have guessed that this was a man who would never really bother to put the effort in to be romantic? Hells yes I should have! Should I have said no? Absolutely! And now we’re divorced for that very reason…learn from me, ladies!
Start as you mean to go!