Statesboro, GA, USA
I agree with Ron...but maybe 10 years is too short...why get married at all? It's only a piece of paper! I think it would be cool to live in a duplex next to the man of my heart - that way HE can have his space and so can I. We can get together for meals if we want..or sex..or talking..or just hanging out. But if he or I want to be alone, we just go to our own place and lock the door!
In response to some of the replies, I wanted to quote Professor Allan Bloom ...
Part of the inablility to make sexual commitments results from an ideology of the feelings. Young people are always tellling me such reasonable things about jealousy and possessiveness and even their dreams about the future. But as to dream about the future with a partner, they have none. That would be to impose a rigid, authoritarian pattern on the future, which should emerge spontaneously. This means they can foresee no future, or that the one they would naturally foresee is forbidden them by current piety, as sexist. Similarly, why should a man or a women be jealous if his or her partner has sexual relations withe someone else? A serious person today does not want to force the feelings of others. The same goes for possessiveness. When I hear such things, all so sensible and in harmony with a liberal society, I feel that I am in the presence of robots. This ideology only works for people who have had no experience of the feelings, have never loved, have abstracted from the textures of life. These prodogies of reason need never fear Othello's fate. Kill for love! What can that mean? It may very well be that their apatheia is a suppression of feeling, anxiety about getting hurt. But it might also be the real thing. People may, having digested the incompatibility of ends, have developed a new kind of soul. None of the sexual possibilities students have actualized was unknown to me. But their lack of passion, of hope, of despair, of a sense of the twinship of love and death, is incomprehensible to me. When I see a young couple who have lived together throughout their college years leave each other with a handshake and move out into life, I am struck dumb.
... "relationships" not love affairs, are what they have. Love suggests something wonderful, exciting, positive and firmly seated in the passions. A relationship is gray, amorphous, suggestive of a project, without a given content, and tentative. You work at a relationship, whereas love takes care of itself. In a relationship the difficulties come first, and there is a search for common grounds. Love presents illusions of perfection to the imagination and is forgetful of all the natural fissures in human connection. About relationships there is ceaseless anxious talk, the kind one cannot help overhearing in student hangouts or restaurants frequented by men and women who are "involved" with one another, the kind of obsessive prattle so marvelously captured in old Nichols and May routines or Woody Allen films. In one Nichols and May bit, a couple who have just slept together for the first time, assert with all the emptiness of doubt, "We are going to have a relationship.
... When marriage occurs it does not usually seem to result from a decision and a consious will to take on its responsibilites. The couple have lived together for a long time, and by an almost imperceptible process, they find themselves married, as much out of convenience as passion, as much negatively as positively (not really expecting to do much better, since they have looked around and seen how imperfect all fits seem to be). Among the educated, marriage these days seems to be best acquired, as Macaulay said about the British Empire, in a fit of absence of mind.
(from "The Closing of the American Mind")
I can't help seeing much of what he sees. I know the answer is deeper than just "Marriage" as an ought. For we know that Marriages can be as shallow as live-ins. But what have we lost as a whole? Where is the passion, the romance, the forever kind of fairytale love? Where is a love that is too lost in self forgetfulness to be anxious about making sure it "works" for a few years first? Love is idealistic first, and practical second. When the first is lost, the second becomes difficult if not impossible. Machines without oil grind gears. I've heard Marriage knocked here and there on these forums, but I believe the old views of it are those we should desire back, and the stablest, as long as we hold Marriage as something more than an asset to one's self goals ... mystical, wonderful, and dare I say, sacred? Do some of the above descriptions of relationships, as shallow as they sound, fail to strike our humor because they aren't really a joke anymore?