Modern Love

October 19, 2012 9 Comments TAGS: Marriage, Sex & Sexuality

By Guest Blogger Susan Houde

While reading the latest issue of Glamour Magazine last night, I came across an interesting article. Titled The Curse of the Just-OK Marriage,” it is based on excerpts from the book Marriage Confidential by Pamela Haag. She addresses the “Post romantic age of workhorse wives, royal children, undersexed spouses and rebel couples who are rewriting the rules.”

Wow, that is a mouthful. Today, I am focusing on the marriage part.

This article is just one of many recent articles which re-examine modern marriage, couples and monogamy. This modern love is complicated stuff! What does it take to survive in a relationship today? Is being with one person “till death do you part” even possible anymore? I know that everyone out there has questioned this at some point.

Haag speaks of people stuck in an “OK marriage.” Where the couple is at the “ambivalent” stage. I’m not sure what people expect when they are married for long periods of time. The spark dies down, things get routine, complacent and dare I say, boring? We have all been there at one time or another. I have been with my husband for 18 years and married for 15. I feel very lucky that I married the right man for me. I can say with truth that I never felt the need to go outside my marriage and “test the waters.” It appears though, that I am not the norm. It looks like many couples are in a panic over becoming friends. They are putting so much pressure on themselves and each other to be “what society expects them to be” – a passionate and thriving couple. Which couple together for 20 years doesn’t have to work to keep things spicy?

I’m sure we all wish that our sex lives resembled a late-night movie on Cinemax. But let’s be realistic.

Marriage takes work. LOTS of work!!! Compromise, tolerance and sometimes, several adult beverages. 😉 It is not easy. It is not always fun, exciting and a bed full of rose petals. I think that the “modern” couple has unrealistic expectations of marriage– the notion that once you marry, it will be blissful and perfect. Then when their partner disappoints them or they realize that married life isn’t perfect, they give up and throw in the towel.

What I am most proud of, is that my husband and I are able to communicate. We do that really well. We really talk. Not via text, but actually face to face. I don’t always like to hear what he has to say, but I listen. He doesn’t always like what I have to say, but he listens too. It’s about being open, honest, and starting the dialogue. Without communication, marriage is like a time bomb just waiting to go off.

The Today Show recently did a piece on the ever-popular website Ashley Madison. With over 800,000 members, it is the official cheaters website. Their tag line is “Life is Short, Have an Affair.” Really? Is this what marriage has become? People with blacked out faces admitting that having an affair, and I quote “has made them a better wife, mother & happier in general.” I am both disgusted and amazed by the popularity of this site. Could this represent the downfall of the modern marriage? Seeing how popular it is, maybe this is the future of marriage– hit some bumps in the road, and look outside. I hope not.

My question is, is monogamy possible in modern love? Do the vows we take mean anything anymore? Are we always going to be looking for someone or something else to make us happy? When is enough, enough?

Most of us already know that the grass is NOT always greener on the other side. It may look really nice, but actually, it has lots of weeds, dead spots and needs watering, just like yours. I think we need to look at our own yard and remind ourselves how amazing it already is.

About Susan Houde

Susan Houde is a professional media makeup artist, blogger, part-time rock star & full time rockin’mama. Susan has worked in the beauty industry for over 20 years as an artist & skincare professional. She is also the creator of the blog PRETTY.Rockin.mama; a humorous and honest take all things beautiful in life, music and motherhood.

When she’s not out making the women of the world more beautiful, she is a singer in a professional cover band, wife to one amazing man and mother to two boys.

Visit Susan at her blog: http://prettyrockinmama.blogspot.ca

I would love your thoughts on Susan’s view of modern love. Is it too idealistic? Are you on the fence here? Do you believe that you should be more accepting and live in a complacent or “OK marriage,” or do you agree with throwing in the towel if you are really unhappy. How do you know if the wear & tear is worth repairing or releasing? Do you agree that couples give up too easily on marriage today? You know the stat – 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce. What do you make of modern love, and modern day marriages? Have we lost the true sanctity of marriage? I’d love your take.

PS – I’m getting on a plane now to speak at She’s Connected today. I’m really looking forward to meeting all the women. Back to my husband tonight, to keep our modern love alive. 😉

xoxEDxox

    9 Comments

    1. IsabellaNo Gravatar says:

      I love this post.Is very useful and contain explicit content for every person who want to join Ashley Madison.

    2. LaurelNo Gravatar says:

      With respect to the idea that couples become complacent, routine and ‘boring’, my mother-in-law always says that marriage is what keeps you together until you fall in love with each other all over again.

    3. CathyNo Gravatar says:

      Great post! I believe that if two people are committed to each other, then their marriage should work. It takes two to tango right?

    4. Joyce HalladayNo Gravatar says:

      Interesting to read the above comment’s, in particular the young woman’s comment’s about learning from our parent’s mistakes. If, being a big if, I only knew then what I know now! I spent a lot of time wishing for something different, instead of concentrating on doing something with what I had. Oh the thing’s I want to tell you!

      I spent 17 year’s in a previous marriage, some of those year’s were really great, in particular the birth of our daughter who will be 15 tomorrow! Huge blessing upon my life. It was my expectation’s and my disappointment’s that took the toll on that marriage. I lost myself to alcoholism, feeling sorry for myself and lamenting what was wrong with my life. There was nothing wrong with my life, I just hadn’t grown enough to understand what I could do to make the changes, within myself to see him differently.

      Thank God, I’m not where I used to be! In this 8 year common law relationship, I was headed down the same road. Until I began to understand that it was the expectation’s that were killing it. I’m not perfect and neither is he, but what we do differently now is…wait for it…we have humbled! Yes I said humbled, the things that used to seem so important to argue about, just really aren’t that important anymore. We are not so entrenched in getting what we want anymore. We let go of the b…t and crap that used to get in the way of our connecting.

      We are maturing, in our understanding of how limited this life is! I remember every day what it is about him that attracted me to him in the first place! He’s handsome, he’s funny, he’s sexy, he’s talented, he’s shy, he is dedicated, faithful, tender, loving, silly…every day I am in awe of the gift of him in my life. If the laundry doesn’t get done, so what! If the dishes sit in the sink dirty, so what! There is so much more than that that I am grateful for. That I have come to a place where I now know how valuable and precious the relationships in my life are, and that I have the capacity to nurture them.

      The initial connection that we make is based on hormones and chemicals, the sustaining component’s of relationship are based on time and shared experiences. It is time for us all to grow up, take responsibility for the relationships in our lives, let go of the expectation’s those are the relationship killer’s and live, live this day, live this moment because this is it, it’s all we get! Blessing’s to all, Joyce

    5. I think that the biggest issue we have is calling it “modern marriage” rather than just what it is, marriage!! People do not commit anymore because they don’t have to. It is now acceptable to leave a marriage simply because you aren’t “happy” anymore. I think we are so focused on ourselves and our own happiness these days that many are not willing to do the hard work and make compromises like past generations.

      Do I think someone should stay in an awful marriage just for the sake of commitment? No. But I do think you should exhaust all efforts to become “happy” again and that will not necessarily mean having the same butterflies and crazy sex that was there in the first years of marriage.

      I am 34 years old, have been with my husband a total of 17 years, married for 8 and while things have changed drastically in our lives(jobs, moving, 2 kids, ect) we make it work, even when it would be easier not to. I always say same sh*t, different relationship.

    6. CherylNo Gravatar says:

      Great post and I love how you ended it. We all have weeds that need tending to. The grass isn’t always greener over there.

    7. Tivi JonesNo Gravatar says:

      As someone who is going through a divorce right now, I can honestly say: I’d rather be single than be in something that isn’t extraordinary.

      My first marriage didn’t work for many reasons, but I can call my ex and his family cherished friends.

      Marriage is work, but you both have to be working towards the same goal – a healthy relationship and life together as partners. Open and honest communication, love, lust and friendship with each other are essential in my book.

      And I have to say, this Ashley Madison nonsense is the most disgusting piece of [expletive] I’ve ever seen. Oh, humanity…

    8. M. Hadden says:

      I’m under 25 and I disagree that young people think of marriage and love as idealistic. I actually think the opposite. We are learning from our parents ‘mistakes’ and from the lack of commitment around us that we see e.g. Kim Kardashian’s short marriage and because of this we are ‘testing the waters’ before we settle down. We are told by our parents and key figures in the media that marriage is hard and that is takes a lot of work and commitment. We are told to ‘marry our best friend’ and ‘don’t settle for any less than you deserve.’ It is our generation that is getting married in their late 20s and 30s rather than in their early 20s- merely because we don’t want to settle down until it’s right; this is probably the only romanticised ideal we have.

      • Susan HoudeNo Gravatar says:

        Thank you ladies for your thoughts & comments! I love to hear what YOU have to say. It inspires me to write more articles that proke true feelings, both positive & negative. 🙂 Let me know if you have any topics you would like to see me cover! Always looking for that spark! 🙂

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