A question about fearing divorce
Anonymous in Perry Hall, Md., writes:
I’m a young woman who has never married. Divorce is very common in my family. My parents, my two siblings, and six of my seven cousins have been divorced, and most of these people are now in their second or third marriages. My non-divorced cousin has never married because she, like me, is fearful that she would ultimately end up being divorced. Do you think she and I are being reasonable to shun marriage because so many of our relatives have been divorced?
No! Your (and your cousin’s) likelihood of a successful marriage has nothing to do with your relatives unless they played a major role in causing their divorces (drinking too much, having affairs, etc.), and you emulate them. Which you’re not going to do, of course. And if you feel that some of them were the victims in their divorces, what does that have to do with you? You’re not going to marry anyone like their ex-spouses.
It’s just a pity that you’re missing the opportunity to have one of the most fabulous experiences that life has to offer: a loving marriage. May I make a suggestion? Open yourself to the possibility of marriage with two conditions: (1) You will not have children for a number (not less than three) years; and (2) you will have children only if you think your marriage is already happy and solid (not to make it happy and solid). Then you may feel that you’re taking much less risk, which will be true.