Do Mindful Marriages Exist?

by mandy lipka

Written somewhere between 2008-2009

This morning I eaves-read in the Metro that Massachusetts is going to allow out-of-state gay couples to wed here. I was thrilled. Not only is it embracing the triumph of love (after all, if you’ve found it, who cares with whom— excluding first of kin, of course), but it will also boost the commonwealth’s economy. Plenty of my gay friends (the men in particular) would pay top dollar to tell the world she or he has fallen into crazy, can’t-live-without-each-other love.

LOVE - Photo Courtesy: elephantjournal.com

LOVE – Photo Courtesy: elephantjournal.com

But then, it having been pre-morning coffee and a 30-minute wait for the bus, I thought to myself, these days, marriage has turned into an ugly institution. I’ve experienced my grandmother’s divorce to my step-grandfather, my aunt’s divorce, my parent’s out-of-wedlock baby-making and later never-married separation, [mom’s recent divorce to step-father], and the repercussions of my grandmother’s divorce to my grandfather. My two uncles are still going strong in their marriages, but even those aren’t always sunshine and rainbows. I pray that my best friend, married last year, is part of the blissful 50%. Or is it 40% now?

I can’t help but wonder, why do we have to propose marriage to have the wedding? Most women think (and I’m heavily generalizing here) they want the marriage, when they really want two things: the wedding and a man (which of course, will give them the necessary tools for a family). The men agree to home-cooked meals and regularly scheduled sex (beware: another big generalization, but bear with me). The next natural step is our biological drive to reproduce. Sorry, I’m not smelling the baby’s breath here.

Photo Courtesy: elephantjournal.com

Photo Courtesy: elephantjournal.com

So, if what we really want is a wedding and some sex, why can’t we have celebrations of love without the paperwork and prenups? Religions are becoming more and more hypocritical and disappointing, so couldn’t a blessing come from your closest loved ones? I mean, are there really any sacred vows left in the 21st century?

Don’t get me wrong— I’ve dreamt about my wedding since I was a little girl, too. Even more so in my 20s. But, with the odds, something tells me there’s gotta be a better investment.

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