I was at the gym yesterday and a couple of the guys, one older and one younger than me, were chatting about marriage. The younger guy was complaining about not getting to the gym more often because of being married now. The older fellow, divorced, said he didn’t have that problem anymore. The younger guy said he realized love is like caffein, at first it is strong and then the effects dissipates. The older guy just said life is so much easier for him to have a girlfriend. You know, friends with benefits. As I am listening I felt like it was time to give my take on this subject. I said in french, “Guys, my story is completely different, mind if if I share it?” They said, “Bien sûr.”
So I began surprising myself with how much passion was coming from my lips. I spoke these words a little louder than I hoped, “I was married at twenty years of age and still am, and, may I add, with the same woman. Has it been hard at times? You bet! In fact, excruciatingly difficult at times.” I think I repeated the french word ‘difficile’ a couple of times! “But now we are in our 35th year and I can tell you we are glad we withstood the storms. I am not wanting to make either of you feel anything negative or guilty about your story, but I just needed to tell you that there are alternative stories to the all too common one of marital breakup. It is possible to work out the most difficult of relationships when both sides are willing.”
It got a little quiet. And I’m not sure if my story accomplished anything positive. I just wish there were more stories like mine. I am sure there are many waiting to be told, maybe yours! Maybe more marriages could be rescued and more would persevere through those times that are ‘difficile,’ if we just weren’t so afraid to actually tell them.