Sunday, November 16, 2014

A Friend Indeed

Blogging has opened a new world of friendship.  People we would never have met in any other way have become dear friends in this new world.  One of my new, dear and beautiful friends is Inderpreet Kaur Uppal.  She is a freelance writer, blogger, editor and lecturer.  She has a Masters Degree in Human Resources Management and loves to read, travel, discuss and write.  Please connect with her at her blog,  Eloquent Articulation,  and read her wonderful posts there.  
Today she is Guest Posting for me on the subject of marriage.  She lives in India - a half world away - in a totally different culture. Yet, we hold the same sentiments dear when it comes to family, relationships and marriage.  Here are her thoughts on marriage:

My friend cut the cake celebrating forty years of marital bliss.  Her simple but intuitive statement made an impact on me.  Smiling she said, "A small celebration at home for forty years is sufficient.  Our gala party will be for our fiftieth!"  I marveled at her optimism and confidence that came from a marriage that was nurtured, full of love, understanding and a commitment to see it through to the end.

I believe that marriage is not for the faint of heart.  I appreciate individuals who choose to remain unmarried rather than marry and endure failure.  It takes courage and guts to acknowledge that a relationship that the world glorifies may not e their cup of tea (or coffee).

With the divorce rate at 50% or worse, we all know someone who has undergone either a divorce or separation.  Many of us may be going through our own troubled times as well.

Marriage is hard work.  But the path to anything good is rarely easy.  We read quotes and cards about marriage and how beautiful or how ugly it can be.  That may be true but marriage is what you make of it - the same is true of all relationships.  Marriage is learning how to become a unit and to stay united!  I wonder where the optimism of the 'olden days' has gone?

A couple I know have been married for a decade.  This should be a good thing, but it is not.  The major part of those ten years has been spent fighting, bickering, blaming and abusing each other!  One of them refuses to stay together and the other refuses to leave.  I also know couples who have divorced after twenty-four years of marriage.  This is becoming the norm.  Why did they grow apart instead of together?

I appreciate what my happily married friend simply said, 
"People have stopped trying."

These are what I believe to be the most obvious reasons:
  • Young women now earn equal or better than men and have developed big egos
  • Young men refuse to accept that women are not just to serve but to be cared for as an equal partner, not just a homemaker.
  • Love marriages have been the norm but the patience to nurture what a couple creates is...missing
  • The necessity to always be right and to have the last word has turned marriages into a competition rather than a companionship.
  • The need to share has become so overwhelming that strangers are trusted to give half-baked advice on marital issues.  It takes  'washing your laundry in public' to a whole new level.  It merely creates more discords, debates and issues.

What happened to the times of patience, compromise and providing a stable environment in the home?  These partners are no longer partners; two souls with one heart, holding hands but still able to disagree.  To be street smart now seems more important than being kind and forgiving.  

"Rai Ka Pahad Banana"
Rai are mustard seeds -- tiny little slippery balls which cannot be stacked together.  In other words, making a mountain out of a molehill! 

For me, the basic sentiments in a marriage are friendship, faith and fun. Any trouble can be handled, any trial overcome and any problem solved if we try to traverse the garden of marriage with our friendship which brings sharing and caring.  Faith in each other, looking out for one another and remembering the fun times help you to look forward, together, to many more good times.

The song "Wannabe" by SPICE GIRLS says it right:

If you wannabe my lover, you gotta get with my friends (gotta get with my friends)
Make it last forever, friendship never ends,
If you wanna be my lover, you have got to give, 
Taking it too easy, but that's the way it is!"

My sincere wish is that instead of rushing to a court to end a marriage, couples would consider fixing their issues first, instead of blaming each other later.  Sometimes, there is no chance of resolution, but everyone should at least try to work it out before giving up.

Do you think marriages are becoming weaker?  Or couples less tolerant?
What is the strength in YOUR marriage?

Please share your love and spread some cheer!

       Inderpreet Kaur Uppal

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