I have come to the conclusion that marriage is a bit like a cult:
- the reasons for getting involved are seldom rational
- you go through an elaborate induction ceremony
- you give up your individuality to a large extent
- leaving is strongly discouraged
- if you do manage to escape, you are seen as a social pariah
However, the real trouble with this whole ’til death us do part’ fandango is that more often than not, you’ve been brainwashed into having disproportionately high expectations of what essentially boils down to a baroque variation on the shacking up theme. After a while, reality starts seeping in through the walls of your bubble of bliss and you begin to realise that some of your loved one’s endearing little quirks have the potential to drive you completely bananas. The truth of the old “familiarity breeds contempt” cliché brought into sharp, high-rez focus.
The thing is, when you get married, you become part of the conspiracy. You’ve been led to believe (by other married couples ensnared in the same murky tangle) that it’s all sunshine and roses. Naturally, it’s a rude shock to discover thunder and thorns lurking beneath the surface – but by then it’s too late. You’ve said the words, so it becomes essential to present an outward appearance of domestic harmony. To do otherwise would be tantamount to an admission of failure and we can’t have that, can we? Thus, the conspiracy becomes self-perpetuating.
When I first broke the news to my friends that my ex and I were getting divorced, practically everyone responded along the lines of, “Holy shit, Batman! But this is so sudden!”+
Hah! I sure fooled them, didn’t I? And to think Jam considers me cynical. The very idea!
+ No, I am not actually Batman. If I was, I think I would probably be driving a better car.