Thursday, January 29, 2009

Are Fairytale Fantasies Destroying Our Happiness?

The night before my wedding, my best friend and maid-of-honor asked me if I was certain I wanted to go through with it. Because if you are having second thoughts, she said, it’s not too late. I thought for a moment before responding. I loved my fiance. I wanted to fully commit to him and, although I couldn’t know for certain what the future would hold, I knew that night and the next day, when I said my vows, that I was choosing him to be my husband. In the eleven years we have since been married, I have made that choice again and again, every day and that, is the “secret” to staying married. Choosing your spouse over and over, despite the rough patches, and learning to ride the waves and weather the droughts. To give yourself to someone is to interlock fingers, hold on tight and jump off that cliff. There are no guarantees. The best of husbands can hurt us in ways only a wife can understand. If you’re looking to be treated like a princess, then marriage is not for you. Life is not a fairytale. There may be fairy-tale moments but, not even a prince, is Prince Charming. And, even real princesses, as in the case of Princess Diana, don’t always have fairytale marriages. What you want and what you need is someone that will wipe your brow and hold your hair back while going through rounds of chemotherapy.

Every long-term relationship goes through periods of closeness and periods of detachment. Sometimes couples experience personal difficulties as individuals and need some emotional distance in order to come together again and grow even stronger as a unit. It’s vital, during these times, to keep in mind the big picture, choose each other every day and simply not make divorce a part of your vocabulary. In the beginning of marriage, sex is wonderful. Usually, the children have not yet arrived and there is much more time for makeup, shaving/waxing, blow-drying and lingerie shopping. As the years progress, respect deepens, love grows and your husband becomes your best friend. Naturally, the freaky sex you used to have for hours on the living room rug becomes love-making, during which you are worried about how long it’s taking because the alarm’s going to go off in a few hours. The thing that married women need to realize, is that all the things they did to seduce their husband in the beginning of their relationship are just as important, or more important, to do many years into that relationship. And, it just doesn’t get any better than freaky sex with your best friend.

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