I realized today I’ve become a lot more cynical and jaded than I ever was, which is saying quite a bit because I’ve been pretty fucking cynical and jaded for a long time. I started thinking about this earlier on this trip when someone was talking about something, I don’t recall exactly what, but it was in reference to someone who was married and a 3rd party who was interested in one member of the couple, and they said “well in San Francisco you can at least ask ‘how married?'” Point being that to many people being “married” means they are just with that one other person and that is the end of the discussion, where as in San Francisco it could mean that, or it could mean something else entirely. I know people who are married who regularly make out with other people they aren’t married to, and with the consent of their marriage partner. Sometimes it doesn’t end at making out. And sometimes that isn’t the only thing that ends.
I don’t have any first hand experience with that, and honestly don’t want to. My feelings are if you are in a committed relationship you need to be committed to it. If you aren’t, you need to get out of it. One person being more committed than the other is just a bomb waiting to blow things all to hell. Those couples are better off not being a couple, but I refuse to play any hand in it. It’s tricky when that’s out in the open, and even worse when it’s not. There was a time when marriage meant “for as long as you both shall live.” That’s not a cliche, there was a point in history when people did in fact stay together for the rest of their lives when they got married. If people had problems they worked them out because they were stuck with that person for ever. That changed at some point, and as I was explaining to a friend a few months back, the fact that people now have the option to get a divorce and not be a social outcast, or maybe find something better has become a self fulfilling prophecy of sorts. If you have no choice, you find ways to make things work, if you have a choice, that is always on the table somewhere and eventually it’s more appealing than fixing whatever problem is at hand. It’s not shocking that the divorce rate continues to climb, and my guess is that it will keep on keeping on.
Coming to this conclusion is cool on some level because I feel like I have some kind of actual insight about how things work – like I’m not under the same delusion as everyone else, but sucks on some level because I know that some fairy tails don’t come true. It also makes it hard to know how to react to other people who are on the other end of that spectrum, either just married or just getting married. Oddly enough relating to people who have been married for a while is no problem because they know the score already. How do you be happy for someone, while at the same time know that chances are they are building a house that is eventually going to get knocked down. Like I said, a new level of cynical and jaded. Sorry about that.
And then, there’s the other end of it where someone is in a relationship that is over, but not publicly or officially or even maybe they just don’t even know it. In talking to people here and there over the last year I’ve been shocked how many people were going through the same thing I was at the same time, but neither of us knew the other was in that situation. It might have been helpful, or consoling to have someone to talk to who knew exactly what I was in the middle of, but I wasn’t letting on and neither were they. One more awesome thing to chalk up on the ego score card. Stupid ego, always playing damage control. Oh well, the fun things you learn after the fact…
I don’t know why I’m thinking so much about this this week, well actually this week would have been my 9th year wedding anniversary so I guess I know exactly why I’m thinking about it. I just have to remember to keep building new dreams for tomorrow, and not focus on the ones that died yesterday.