In a world that is constantly changing and offering us new options a part of us seeks the familiar and marriage is the ultimate vessel for security. While statistics for divorce have been rising and the more times you get married the worse the statistics get, people still seem to believe in the lifelong union. When their plans fail, the pain is strong. Is there a cure for such pain? Is there a cure to divorce?
At the very core of marriage is the message that you will never be alone in this big scary world. Your parents will be gone one day and your children will move out, but your partner will always be there. After all, you marry until death do us apart. A marriage is the union of two different people who are right for each other at a certain point in their lives. Over time, people change and one day they may decide that they do not want to be together anymore.
Perhaps one of the main problems of marriage is that it assumes that relationships are more static than what they really are. Promising that who you are today is someone who will make the same commitment 10 years from now is hopeful at its best. Society treats marriage as a certainty when it is only a beautiful act of hope. The marriage contract that we use today was designed many years ago, but nobody questions its foundations.
It makes sense to suggest that we should have the opportunity to re-evaluate this contract. In the meantime, we are stuck with an agreement that not only has a massive failure rate but it also puts unnecessary pressure on people. You swear to the world that you have found the one and in the process, you convince yourself too. Then when things take a wrong turn all this pressure starts to crush you.
The number one thing that will help you manage the pain of divorce is looking at things from a different angle. The fact that things didn’t go according to your plans does not mean that you made a mistake. You were simply being human, doing your best and learning along the way. It’s hard to see divorce as a lesson and an opportunity for something better when society views it as something negative that should be avoided. But you know better than that. No one can deny that a dried rose had once been pretty.
Teaching also plays an important role in building resilience. Unfortunately, today’s children study mathematical functions that they will seldom use and there are no lessons on how to be emotionally intelligent. Learning how to deal with failure, heartbreak, or different personalities is more valuable, but it is not being taught. Emotional intelligence is a conversation that needs to happen now, for only if we open our minds to a new way of thinking can we create a space to re-negotiate marriage and manage divorce more effectively.