Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Love and marriage

I've been a proponent of gay marriage for a long time now, but last night, after a conversation with a friend of mine (who is gay), I made some new connections in my head. I don't think these connections are new to anyone else but they do connect conversations I've had with a couple of people recently.

My gay friend and I were discussing living together before marriage. He explained to me that without marriage, some gays have created an alternative expectation. Rather than expecting to get married and live happily ever after, they expect to have a few long-term relationships in their life. Following a conversation Matt and I had the night before last, many people who expect forever love, expect it to be like popular culture portrays it to be. When the reality doesn't live up to that expectation, they give up and decide to try again.

I think it would likely be better if everyone had a realistic view of lifelong love. If a relationship, any relationship, is going to last forever, it won't be perfect and it won't be like the movies. Sometimes making that relationship last may require forgiving your partner for something you never imagined you could forgive, being open to the way your relationship will change, and even getting help such as marriage counseling. Maybe having realistic expectations will include knowing that not every relationship can last forever, no matter how much you love one another, and that you may love more than once in your adult life.


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