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Marriage For Love Are You Nuts?

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http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/not-the-marrying-kind-a-modern-girls-guide-to-sex-and-love-9137143.html

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So two years ago, I set upon a quest to find out if there really was something wrong with me for not craving a life merger with a significant other. Am I really missing out, or am I actually quite rational to want to preserve my independence in a world kitted out for autonomy and convenience? After looking at the role of marriage thorough history, the science behind love and speaking with hundreds of couples, divorcees, lifelong singletons, asexuals, philanderers, swingers, sperm-donor mothers and married couples who live apart, I am confident it is the quite rational latter.

Let's start with the history. The idea that our Mr or Mrs Right will fulfil us emotionally, sexually, spiritually and everything else is new – 200 years new. Compared with the hundreds of thousands of years of civilisation, modern love-marriage looks like a social experiment. Before the end of the 19th century, tying the knot was done for inheritance, building important family ties and securing business connections. And not only within the noble classes. Even agricultural workers would be paired off according to the strategic location of their in-laws' fields.

Of course, people still fell in love but that was nothing to do with marriage. Among the aristocracy of the Middle Ages, the highest form of love was considered to be extramarital. In the 16th century, the essayist Montaigne wrote that any man in love with his wife was "a man so dull no one else could love him". Theologians considered loving one's spouse to be a sin – they called it idolatry – because it could interfere with the love of God.

Behind the seismic cultural change towards the love marriage were two things. First, the Industrial Revolution of the late 1700s meant that young people earned a wage and had more control of their own destiny. Second, this was the period of Enlightenment. Young people started to view human relationships as organised by rationale and justice, rather than by force and birthright. Happiness became a legitimate goal. Then when Queen Victoria walked down the aisle in 1840 in an elaborate white gown and accompanied by music, the public was mesmerised. Fancy weddings became the rage. The fairytale had begun.

Commentators were worried about this new ideal. If marriage was based on something as fickle as romantic love, wouldn't such unions be unstable? And guess what? They were right. According to Elizabeth Gilbert in her marriage memoir Committed, whenever a culture turns its back on arranged marriages in favour of the love-marriage, divorce rates rocket. Of course, this isn't to say that arranged marriages are the formula for a robust marriage. Rather, it questions whether stringent, life-long unions are the formula for modern society.

For the first time in history, marriage and cohabitation are no longer a necessity. As recently as 100 years ago, it was impossible to live alone. There was no sliced bread, online deliveries or washer-dryers. You simply had to shack up. There are now 3.5 million people over 45 living alone in the UK, an increase of 25 per cent since the mid-1990s. More people are choosing to live alone because they can.

..

Well we have a flaw more young people won't be able to live alone as thanks to house prices they won't be able to afford it!

So how many here would be happy with an arranged marriage, with your partner being picked solely on how many fields their family have or their social status? This then raises a point how many people actually marry above their station so to speak? How many of the landed gentry actually marry mere proles?

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http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/not-the-marrying-kind-a-modern-girls-guide-to-sex-and-love-9137143.html

Well we have a flaw more young people won't be able to live alone as thanks to house prices they won't be able to afford it!

So how many here would be happy with an arranged marriage, with your partner being picked solely on how many fields their family have or their social status? This then raises a point how many people actually marry above their station so to speak? How many of the landed gentry actually marry mere proles?

Looking back in middle age my life would probably have been better if my marriage had been arranged, I'm more sexually attracted to women that are no good as partners and am unfortunately too honest to just marry a nice girl, tell her lies all the time and have sluttish mistresses.

That said, I'm sure I would have p*ssed and moaned and railed against it if arrangement had been the societal norm. My parents wouldn't have been able to get their heads round the idea of road-testing(or rather, bed-testing) a few different candidates. :-)

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Although I'm not especially a social animal, I think my life is generally improved by relatively frequent and reliable companionship. I don't know about the necessity of love, but a highish level of compatibility would seem essential to me for cohabitation to represent such a life improvement.

In many ways (and certainly in the longer term), I think it would be preferable to live with a strongly compatible friend than some random person with whom I happen to have fallen in love at some juncture. However, one problem with cohabiting with a mere 'friend' is that society has the ideal of a romantic coupling, so your cohabiting friend might not stick around due to their pursuit of this ideal.

The best-of-both-worlds seems to me to be some kind of blurring between the compatible friend with whom you cohabit and a coupling that feels sufficiently romantic to prevent either party seeking any other partnership.

So, compatibility seems more important than love to me, even if a measure of affection between cohabiting partners can help prevent either party from feeling the need to look elsewhere.

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Although I'm not especially a social animal, I think my life is generally improved by relatively frequent and reliable companionship. I don't know about the necessity of love, but a highish level of compatibility would seem essential to me for cohabitation to represent such a life improvement.

In many ways (and certainly in the longer term), I think it would be preferable to live with a strongly compatible friend than some random person with whom I happen to have fallen in love at some juncture. However, one problem with cohabiting with a mere 'friend' is that society has the ideal of a romantic coupling, so your cohabiting friend might not stick around due to their pursuit of this ideal.

The best-of-both-worlds seems to me to be some kind of blurring between the compatible friend with whom you cohabit and a coupling that feels sufficiently romantic to prevent either party seeking any other partnership.

So, compatibility seems more important than love to me, even if a measure of affection between cohabiting partners can help prevent either party from feeling the need to look elsewhere.

Good post. Once the idea of romantic love as a sort of religion-substitute came along, it became very difficult to ignore it. You can marry for companionship or have an arranged marriage and be perfectly happy, but the media, films etc constantly push the idea of romantic love as the highest ideal, creating a constant sense of dissatisfaction in many marriages. I think your idea of compromise is the best and it's what I aim for in my marriage.

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http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/not-the-marrying-kind-a-modern-girls-guide-to-sex-and-love-9137143.html

Well we have a flaw more young people won't be able to live alone as thanks to house prices they won't be able to afford it!

So how many here would be happy with an arranged marriage, with your partner being picked solely on how many fields their family have or their social status? This then raises a point how many people actually marry above their station so to speak? How many of the landed gentry actually marry mere proles?

I was about to quote the problem with the 'For the first time in history, marriage and cohabitation are no longer a necessity.' line but you've already said it.

I notice the sample they use are over 45's.

I'd like to see the under 45 counter.

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I was about to quote the problem with the 'For the first time in history, marriage and cohabitation are no longer a necessity.' line but you've already said it.

I notice the sample they use are over 45's.

I'd like to see the under 45 counter.

Marriage and/or cohabitation has never been a neccessity. There were 'confirmed bachelors' throughout history, indeed in the victorian era there was an entire class of men who 'couldn't afford to marry.' It was a little more difficult for a woman to remain unmarried but if she was resolute and self-reliant, it was possible.

What has changed, only in the last fifty years or so, is that it is no longer a necessity to marry or cohabit in order to have regular and open sexual relations. A man or woman can have a string of short, non-cohabitational sexual relationships all his or her life now, and nobody would particularly bat an eyelid.

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http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/not-the-marrying-kind-a-modern-girls-guide-to-sex-and-love-9137143.html

Well we have a flaw more young people won't be able to live alone as thanks to house prices they won't be able to afford it!

So how many here would be happy with an arranged marriage, with your partner being picked solely on how many fields their family have or their social status? This then raises a point how many people actually marry above their station so to speak? How many of the landed gentry actually marry mere proles?

I read that the traditional marrying up from working class to middle class is dying out. Doctors used to marry nurses, business chaps their secretaries etc. Now doctors marry doctors etc. Apparently it used be quite a significant social mobility factor. Whereas now there's a strong middle class lock in. Except, of course, the Middle class itself is being cut off at the knees.

arranged marriages are probably ok providing the parents are looking out for their sprog as well sealing a deal or palming off a troublesome daughter. In retrospect, I know what I was looking for in my late teens/early twenties - and it was far more base than comradeship or compatibility! Sheer luck saw me ok and we're still together and content. I'm sure parents know their sprogs better than they know themselves and can slant the odds better than leaving it to random chance.

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Mass affluence has poisoned marriage and parenthood. Anyone with any self-respect is withdrawing from marriage, relationships, children and society in general. We're well into our own mouse utopia experiment. Watching it fall apart will be fun!

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Looking back in middle age my life would probably have been better if my marriage had been arranged, I'm more sexually attracted to women that are no good as partners and am unfortunately too honest to just marry a nice girl, tell her lies all the time and have sluttish mistresses.

That said, I'm sure I would have p*ssed and moaned and railed against it if arrangement had been the societal norm. My parents wouldn't have been able to get their heads round the idea of road-testing(or rather, bed-testing) a few different candidates. :-)

Yes they would! We all did it! :huh:

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Yes they would! We all did it! :huh:

...for the lads it was called sowing their wild oats, for the girls it was tarts or slags....work that one out. ;)

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...for the lads it was called sowing their wild oats, for the girls it was tarts or slags....work that one out. ;)

No it wasn't! Ladies like it too! I'm pretty sure these ladies were my equal, and it is quite a thing to give your whole self over to a bloke for a while! BIt more personal!

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No it wasn't! Ladies like it too! I'm pretty sure these ladies were my equal, and it is quite a thing to give your whole self over to a bloke for a while! BIt more personal!

.....Not so much about like or not like, more to do with for the boys it was looked upon as cool, macho, popular...top of the scale of manliness....for the girls they were looked down upon, especially by the boys themselves as tarts, easy, there to be used and abused etc etc.......the boys were even encouraged by their parents to spread it about a bit before they settled down with a 'good girl'.....who married the 'bad' naughty and promiscuous girls I often wondered?.....how times are changing. ;)

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It's a major problem though that the expectations of romantic happiness in marriage now leads to many more divorced couples, whereas 100 years ago it would have been a solid marriage with a bit of bonking on the side (mostly for the men, natch).

I know two Uk couples where both individuals a great parents and good people, but because of no 'spark' the woman is pulling the pin and looking for mr right. nasty and expensive and damaging for the kids.

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It's a major problem though that the expectations of romantic happiness in marriage now leads to many more divorced couples, whereas 100 years ago it would have been a solid marriage with a bit of bonking on the side (mostly for the men, natch).

I know two Uk couples where both individuals a great parents and good people, but because of no 'spark' the woman is pulling the pin and looking for mr right. nasty and expensive and damaging for the kids.

...define what 'a spark' is....... ;)

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It's a major problem though that the expectations of romantic happiness in marriage now leads to many more divorced couples, whereas 100 years ago it would have been a solid marriage with a bit of bonking on the side (mostly for the men, natch).

I know two Uk couples where both individuals a great parents and good people, but because of no 'spark' the woman is pulling the pin and looking for mr right. nasty and expensive and damaging for the kids.

The thing is, marriage was, until relatively recently, considered to be a binding contract, from which an exit was frowned upon except in the most extenuating of circumstances. Now it is something that can be broken on nothing more than a whim. Taken purely as a legal contract, no man in his right mind would sign up to it. This based on the obligations that still exist should the other party choose to exit from the contract purely for their own selfish reasons.

Reasons to end a marriage:-

- Domestic violence

- Persistant infidelity

- Constant emotional abuse

Reason not to end a marriage:-

- "I don't love him/her anymore". - Seriously, grow up. No one stays "in love" indefinitely.

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1393110350[/url]' post='1102472711']

The thing is, marriage was, until relatively recently, considered to be a binding contract, from which an exit was frowned upon except in the most extenuating of circumstances. Now it is something that can be broken on nothing more than a whim. Taken purely as a legal contract, no man in his right mind would sign up to it.

Mate of mine is working two jobs to save up £15,000 for his big day to celebrate that contract.

Spending that much on what is essentially a party is disgusting to me. Thankfully I'm in no danger of getting married any time soon ;)

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Mate of mine is working two jobs to save up £15,000 for his big day to celebrate that contract.

Spending that much on what is essentially a party is disgusting to me. Thankfully I'm in no danger of getting married any time soon ;)

That's an odd choice of word. Reckless or unwise maybe, but disgusting? What about someone who spends £15,000 on a car? Is that also disgusting to you?

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The thing is, marriage was, until relatively recently, considered to be a binding contract, from which an exit was frowned upon except in the most extenuating of circumstances. Now it is something that can be broken on nothing more than a whim. Taken purely as a legal contract, no man in his right mind would sign up to it. This based on the obligations that still exist should the other party choose to exit from the contract purely for their own selfish reasons.

Reasons to end a marriage:-

- Domestic violence

- Persistant infidelity

- Constant emotional abuse

Reason not to end a marriage:-

- "I don't love him/her anymore". - Seriously, grow up. No one stays "in love" indefinitely.

My advice to my kids is to remember that it is a contract of marriage and as the off the shelf version is unclear to get a lawyer to draft a custom contact with all eventualities and exit clauses and terms made explicit. Of course, they wouldn't be "married " in the eyes of the state but they'd be contractually bound and protected in their relationship and they can still sign it at a big party in front of their friends, family and community should they wish.

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1393122988[/url]' post='1102472756']

That's an odd choice of word. Reckless or unwise maybe, but disgusting? What about someone who spends £15,000 on a car? Is that also disgusting to you?

it horrifies me that people blow half a years wages on a single day. As a couple you could spend that money taking a big long trip together or something.

If someone spent £15,000 hiring a car for the day, then yes that too would be disgusting.

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That's an odd choice of word. Reckless or unwise maybe, but disgusting? What about someone who spends £15,000 on a car? Is that also disgusting to you?

I prefer your words......reckless and unwise, I can see many enter a long-term contract, for richer and poorer, better or worse that both those words would describe... ;)

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That's an odd choice of word. Reckless or unwise maybe, but disgusting? What about someone who spends £15,000 on a car? Is that also disgusting to you?

Do cars only last one day?

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My advice to my kids is to remember that it is a contract of marriage and as the off the shelf version is unclear to get a lawyer to draft a custom contact with all eventualities and exit clauses and terms made explicit. Of course, they wouldn't be "married " in the eyes of the state but they'd be contractually bound and protected in their relationship and they can still sign it at a big party in front of their friends, family and community should they wish.

Someone I know from university did this with a man she'd had a couple of kids with. She had some sort of lefty/feminist aversion to the concept of marriage, and she and her man had a solicitors contract drawn up which she said, quote, 'bound him tighter than marriage' LOL.

They did eventually get married though, and as far as I know, still are.

I'd suggest all men who are married or thinking of getting married read some of the 'red pill' advice online. There's a book called The Married Man's Sex Life Primer which is pretty good. Otherwise you're setting yourself up to get majorly screwed over.

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I can not see one reason why two people need to be or get married legally.....the contract is between two people and the trust they have in each other, why should the state be involved?.....no benefit whatsoever.....wills can be made, insurances can still be taken and why, there is no need to do a prenup when there is no nup.....win.win. ;)

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I can not see one reason why two people need to be or get married legally.....the contract is between two people and the trust they have in each other, why should the state be involved?.....no benefit whatsoever.....wills can be made, insurances can still be taken and why, there is no need to do a prenup when there is no nup.....win.win. ;)

Perhaps due to the historical and traditional significance of marriage, for some people, there's nothing else quite like it.

Between them, alternatives can amount to the same effect as being married--at least functionally--but marriage still has a status for some people that cannot easily be replaced by its functional equivalents.

If two people (or even sometimes, one of the two) feel that marriage is the only appropriate outcome of what would appear to be The Real Thing, then, lo, it is.

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