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Old 02-20-2010, 02:15 PM   #1
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Have relationships always been so bad?

Just reading around and reading some old posts today, people are just so cruel to each other... It seems like cheating is the norm, and it's almost unrealistic to expect to get married and stay with one person anymore. Is society such today that relationships are just getting worse and worse and the chances of really finding one life-partner are just next to nothing? Or is it that because this is a relationship help board, the people who have great relationships just don't write and I'm just accustomed to seeing awful things and awful relationships?

On the other hand, my relationship has gotten significantly better aside from some OCD-related jealousy issues that I have. My boyfriend has been extremely kind lately and even told me today that he loved me for the first time! (we've been dating for five months.) I have felt that for awhile but didn't want to say it first, so he all of a sudden looked me in the eyes this morning and said "I just wanted to tell you that I really, really love you and care for you!" It was a happy morning, but is it unrealistic to expect it to last in this day and age? Everything seems so depressing... no one seems to stay together for very long anymore.

 
Old 02-20-2010, 03:05 PM   #2
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

Half of all marriages fail. On the positive side, half of all marriages succeed. If you want to judge how relationships have changed, you have to look at the context. People used to get married to raise a family; stability and economic success meant a lot more than love. These days, romantic love and personal happiness are the most common reason to marry, and the loss of those means divorce. Love is not nearly as permanent as a stable income, unfortunately. People are more selfish these days only insofar as they have higher priorities for their own fulfillment and more freedom to seek it.

In the 1950s you might have gotten hitched at the age of 14 to the man who got you pregnant (like my grandmother did) and weathered his abuse of you and your children until the civil rights and women's movement, when divorce laws became accessible enough to allow you to leave. Be careful about pining for the golden days... The grass is always greener! While many people were satisfied with those kinds of marriages, being born in this day and age, its unlikely that any of us would be. There were all of the same problems... cheating, abuse, falling out of love. They just weren't considered reason enough to leave.

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:24 PM   #3
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

That's a good point! I guess my question is not so much about the ability to divorce, but the conditions leading up to divorce. Whether or not people have stayed together for whatever reason, have so many people always been so abusive and untrustworthy and disloyal? Seems like more people are Tiger Woodsish than are not. I hope I am being overly cynical.

 
Old 02-20-2010, 03:30 PM   #4
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

people need to make better choices!

 
Old 02-20-2010, 04:58 PM   #5
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

We no longer live in an agricultural economic system. A woman doesn't HAVE to have a husband to hunt and gather, tend the farm, pull the plow, and a man doesn't HAVE to have a wife to give him sons to carry on the family name, to tend home and hearth, cook, clean, keep social standing, etc. The only reason to marry these days is love, and love almost never lasts. Love is transcient, and it changes as we change and as our emotional needs change and mature.

I think if you want a good relationship, you have to change your idea of what a good long term relationship is. I personally think the way one very famous tinsel town couple is doing it will be the way everyone will be doing it in the future. The woman recently stated in an interview that she doesn't believe fidelity is essential to a long term relationship and that she and her partner are very careful not to restrict each other. She said giving him freedom is better than hating him for cheating, leaving him and talking badly about him afterward. Have kids, adopt kids, and just draw up legal papers to determine what will happen to the kids and the assets should one die or should they break up, but not get married. I think that's the future of the healthy, long term relationship.

 
Old 02-20-2010, 07:43 PM   #6
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rosequartz View Post
people need to make better choices!
And this is the simple and honest truth...why did my marriage fail, becaise I married a DRUNK! I just knew he'd change... If people would stop trying to change a person to be the right person for them and just find the right person, there would be a lot fewer failed relationships. For some reason people think because someone is attractive, that somehow makes them the perfect person for them. You have to look past that pretty package on the outside and see what's on the inside!
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Old 02-21-2010, 06:55 AM   #7
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BeaTrade View Post
And this is the simple and honest truth...why did my marriage fail, becaise I married a DRUNK! I just knew he'd change... If people would stop trying to change a person to be the right person for them and just find the right person, there would be a lot fewer failed relationships. For some reason people think because someone is attractive, that somehow makes them the perfect person for them. You have to look past that pretty package on the outside and see what's on the inside!
Too right! I think many people get married to someone who has serious issues, whether they be wasting money, abuse, infidelity, alcoholism, etc and they think that marriage will change them. Somehow, once they take those vows, they think these issues will go away. Well, they don't, they just get worse!

You'd think the fact that so many couples live together before marriage would mean that marriages would last longer, but this doesn't seem to be the case. I think many couples realize there are issues, but marriage will cure them. I have a friend who lived with her bf for 3 years before marrying him. He was terrible with money and never cleaned up around the house. And he just got worse after marriage. I asked her why did you marry him knowing that this was going on? She thought he would change after marriage. God knows why! Now she thinks that having a baby will change him! I just want to shake her! Marriage and babies don't change people-only a sincere desire to change on the part of the person with the issue will achieve anything.

When you marry someone, you are saying that you accept the person as they are. If they drink, go the strip joints, cheat on you, ignore you, you are accepting them as they are. The person doing the damage has no incentive to change, why should they? If anything their behavior will get worse and worse because they see their partner marrying them as a sign of acceptance of their faults. So my advice soul be, if your partner exhibits behaviors before marriage that you cannot accept then work on these issues before even thinking of marriage. And it gets said time and time again on these boards-people don't change unless they want to. And its true!

 
Old 02-21-2010, 07:03 PM   #8
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lysander View Post
Half of all marriages fail. On the positive side, half of all marriages succeed.
I think it's really important to remember that if half of marriages fail, there is another half that succeeds. I think people just don't talk about the successes as much as the failures. Mostly, as people, we seem to like to complain, so we are likely to talk about that which isn't going well. Or maybe when things are going well, there's not much to say. It's when we start having problems and such we start talking about it - looking for advice or whatever.
So it's really important to remember the success stories are out there. We just unfortunately don't focus on those stories.

 
Old 02-22-2010, 09:48 AM   #9
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Re: Have relationships always been so bad?

Good question, Digmusic..
That is very sweet what your bf said to you...the "I Love You" feels good, doesn't it? Not that it is needed to validate anything, but somehow it feels really good. I understand also your sensible and realistic look into relationships fail and success rate. Have they always been so hard, or failed so often throughout the ages? My belief is that relationships have always been as hard or difficult as they are today, but that there is more "failure" because ending things seems easier than it did in decades past. Its sad, but so many people change relationships like they change socks, not willing to stick it out. I'm all for being free and liberated and not taking the BS or abuse that some relationships encompass, however I feel that some realtionships that have hope and a solid foundation are lost or given up on because when the going gets tough, people are finding it easier and more acceptable to bail.

I think its a matter of choosing to make it work. IF both people involved choose to make it through rough waters, a realtionship can work. Communication being the key- and in this day and age of texting, emailing and busy busy lives, communication has broken down, on the intimate level.

My bf and I are just over the three year mark. Now that the infatuation phase has evolved into real life, seeing each other for who we really are without the happy magic endorphins clouding the image, we have to stay committed to staying connected, regardless of the fact that both of us know where the door is, and both of us could bail when it gets tough. So yeah, I thinks it always been tough to an extent- I'm sure that my grandparents (who were married for 60+ years and died married) ran into their share of difficulties but it was just not really even thought of for them to split. In todays world, its too easy to NOT work things out.

I'm going off of two hours sleep today- sorry if I am making no sense. Had to take the bf to the airport at 4am, and not being able to get to sleep until 2am

Last edited by River rocks; 02-22-2010 at 09:51 AM.

 
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