Marriage is an institution worth saving. It can be the source of greatest joy and stability for the couple as well as for children. It is something that is a blessing to those inside it and for those to whom it ministers.
However, it is being attacked from every angle– internally and externally.
Externally, it is devalued by same sex unions and cohabitation. It is degraded and cheapened by these in the sense that if anyone can be partners at any time and in by whatever means necessary, why should a man and a woman feel the desire or necessity to marry?
Internally, it is attacked by the greater prevalence of divorce. Since more people are getting divorced and it has easier to follow this route, more couples are settling disagreements in court with attorneys than in their houses with love for one another seeking to place the other first.
So, how would you choose to save it?
An Australian company believes that the way to do this is to subsidize lingerie.
“We need something to help people overcome these traumatic problems, and subsidized lingerie would mean women would feel a lot better, and their hubbies will feel a lot better,” Lee told Australia’s AAP news agency.
“But good lingerie is very expensive. You used to be able to buy a pair of knickers for 1 dollar, but now 20 dollars will get you very little.”
I had to laugh at the part about buying “very little” in the same discussion of lingerie, but I think this guy is missing the key part here. We’re not going to strengthen marriage through underwear.
I believe that the secret to building marriage back up has to begin with attacking what has made it weakest. I think that you have to remove the possibility of divorce. I can hear some of you now– “but what if the wife beats her husband and constantly sends him to the emergency room? Shouldn’t he have a way to get out?” In short, no– at least, not in the ways he can now.
I’m all for protecting a battered spouse and children– through the criminal system and imprisoned if necessary. But eliminating the possibility of divorce would go a long way to making marriage stronger. For one thing, you would think about who it was that you were going to marry a lot harder if you knew that there wasn’t an escape clause.
The next thing that I would do to save marriage was to stop any redefinition or copies. I would reinforce the stigma that used to be on those who “lived in sin” and state, like they did in Missouri, that they either have to get married or get out. Take away the domestic partnership benefits, the joint bank accounts for unmarried people– all the perks that those that are living together get that are breaks that used to be for married people alone.
Finally, I would offer easier access to counseling, and have some kind of monthly or yearly checkups with someone so that if there are issues that need to be worked through they can be dealt with instead of allowing them to fester.
What would you do to save marriage?
15 thoughts on “How Would You Choose to Save Marriage?”
i agree with you. divorce is not in our vocabulary…..sure there’s been tough times. there’s been times we’ve almost hated each other but we just celebrated 15 years of marriage and we love each other more than ever.
Love is not a feeling.
Love is commitment and obligation resulting from those wedding vows we once took. Provided we were not kidding, we should keep them.
How to save a fallen marriage… Forgivness, humbliness, will to be changed, accepting help, thinking of the other spouse. I like what Phillip McGraw teaches in his councelling and his books: that marriage is not a 50/50 deal, but 100/100. Untill we get it, we are prone to lose it every time. An believe me, I know what I am talkin about, I am the chief of sinners in this category.
Jesus sacrificed his holy life for us. Cannot we sacrifice our lusts and weaknesses for the sake of our spouses and our children?
It is a hard work – but nobody said it would be easy. How was it?
Aside from the obvious, prayer and voting my values, how would I personally change worldwide opinions for the better?
Through my writing. Not talking blogging here. I’ve always been fascinated by the power of word pictures/analogies/parables/fiction~whatever you want to call it. I’ve mentioned the author Francine Rivers before and how powerful of a message she has in several of her books…Leota’s Garden is a beautifully written war against euthanasia, Atonement Child is a fierce bird’s eye view on the pressures/hurts/consequences of abortion. I have a favorite old-timey author, Kathleen Norris. She wrote in the 40’s, and had a way of taking real life people with real problems, showing how attractive divorce “seemed” and then taking you through the pain and stigma and horrors of child custody, etc. Or if not divorce, she’d tackle premarital sex which was just getting experimented with back then. Her books aren’t “Christian” but she really takes a moral stand and I have to think that she was trying to prick the consciences of the country through her writing. That’s what I’d love to be able to do. Words are powerful. Christian fiction is amazing. It’s changed so much in the past ten years. Sure, you can still find the fluffy stuff everywhere, but many authors such as Rivers and Karen Kingsbury are writing the new stuff: Life-changing fiction. (Kingsbury coined the term) Many people are coming to know the Lord through these ladies’ willingness to tackle the hard issues from a Godly perspective.
How would I save my marriage? A lot of time spent in prayer and worship. Then see a Christian counselor. That’s about all. Sometimes a marriage needs to have someone outside of the marriage to point things out that the couple could not see.
It shocked me, Mrs. Diamond, in premarital counseling when the youth pastor we were working with said that any couple could get a divorce, because marriage is something which you work at your whole lives together. It’s not enough to say I won’t, but have to take measures to make sure that you don’t even get anywhere near that point!
Ann, I think you’ve hit it well. You need to make it 100/100 and have the right leadership model. You can’t only be in a marriage for what you can get out of it– you have to be in it for the family!
Come on, Mary. You know that you hope to impact the world through blogging too. 🙂
Yeah, but I don’t often blog about marriage! Everything else…lol.
I forgot to say that divorce hasn’t ever been in our vocabulary either. Not an option, and I’m so grateful. He’s stuck with me!
I think you have a good point there, Leticia. Sometimes you need help to see what may be obviously in front of you!
It might well be that to save marriage, it will be necessary to retrieve it from the jaws of the State.
Marriage has always been more about a couple’s standing in the eyes of its neighbors and its parish than the government’s opinion. Perhaps we’ll have to recur formally to that older, social interpretation to rescue marriage from those who would define it out of existence.
Saving a marriage involves commitment to the virtues of love, respect, and honesty. I agree that we must attack the weak parts of the relationship and forge ahead!
I think there are certain cases when divorce can be allowed, but these should be the exception, not the rule. Divorce rates jumped so high thanks to no-fault divorce.
What cases would you allow it, Anna S, and how would you save it?
I have a full-return policy on my husband. Seriously!
He graduated from a Teen Challenge program several years ago(before our marriage). Any graduate who has difficulties (not necessarily drugs) can return for “Restoration” which is a 9 month program to get them back on track with life.
We agreed that if Jeff gets stupid that I can drop him off at their door and say, “It didn’t work!” They’ll shape him up. 🙂
Communication!! It is so paramount…If I’ve learned anything from one year of marriage is that we need to talk regularly about “things” to keep the good vibes flowing.
That’s hilarious, Anna! I get an almost “Stepford” picture in my head– where if your husband isn’t behaving you can take him back and get version 2.0. 🙂
You’re right about communication. I find that I enjoy and feel that the strongest part of our marriage is when we actually sit down and talk.
Speaking of communication, do you have an image you’d like me to use instead of the yellow guy for an avatar?
Yes, please change the image! 🙂 Some sort of flower or girl image would be fine. Thanks!
Is any of the images that you’ve been posting of your pictures acceptable, or would you like me to find something?