For Better or For Worse

This morning in the New York Times I read an article in the Opinion section written by Michael Cobb entitled "The Supreme Court's Lonely Hearts Club." I didn't read all the links and research put into the article. I just sat and felt the feelings that came up as I read each paragraph.

Simply put, the argument for the change in marriage laws was based on the fact that single people are miserable and everyone deserves to be happy in a union. Cobb wrote, "Once again, being single is the dreary, awful, mournful alternative to marriage. A condition to be pitied, and quickly corrected by a sprint to City Hall."

I've chosen not to marry. I have received seven proposals and ignored or ran from these opportunities. I chose to marry me, my writing, growth process, and soul's true work which evolves over time. Doing what I want to do, when I want to do it, having choice every day instead of fulfilling a role someone needs me to do for them, because I need them to make me an "honest woman" in order to be valid in this world. Fully engaging with the Self in life has allowed me to know the people I interact with daily on a deeper level. I'm not just repeating patterns of acquiesence because that is expected and normal. Choosing to have an authentic moment, whether alone or with another, is something single people have.

I know there are satisfying marriages out there, but honestly, in all my years I've not known many married people who are sincerely content. They might not want to be single, but the compromises necessary for a successful continuation of the union make for an uncomfortable, irritating life and lifestyle. How many people are stuck, unsatisfied with either the situation of their solitude or their union? How many talk about it, get it off their chest, go to therapy, or live with an addiction in order not to feel what is unacceptable? How many walk down the aisle with doubt and dread that this isn't the right person, right time, or the right reason to get married? It isn't a black or white decision as Justice Kennedy makes it out to be, that marrieds are good and singles are bad.

So many people choose to marry because they don't want to be alone. So many others marry because they don't want to deal with the social alienation in a "couple" society. We can't neglect the many who choose marriage because of the economic incentives. Justice Kennedy wrote in his opinion that, "No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family."

It is certainly profound when the "for worse" part of the equation arrives. When illness transforms personality and suddenly the person with whom one stood at the alter is no longer the person in one's bedroom. Our society doesn't talk about how difficult giving birth is, or how traumatic the aging process affects families, or how to prepare for and talk compassionately about death. All the money instead is put into weddings, new real estate, building up 'the life,' having a companion to join forces in 'keeping up with the Jones's, coffins, plots, and funerals. Greedy façades crumble through deceit or illness, violence or neglect. Yet, the push to marry and reproduce remains ever constant. Deepak Chopra is now contesting Darwin's theories in OM Times Magazine. He says Consciousness Drives Evolution. I think its about time. Besides, the Bonobos have more fun and I think live longer lives.

I recently saw a wonderful video of a man caring for his wife with Alzheimer's. How many people are that caring, patient, and kind with those they profess to love? How many people on the planet receive and give that level of care? I'd really like to know. I wonder if that's the kind of love that Justice Scalia knows in his own personal life?

There are too many people on this planet. Yet do we look at the real issues on our plate, or get distracted by created conflicts; the racial wars, and now the promised marriage option while quietly taken away is our ability to know what country our meat originates from, as daily our physical environment (climate) seems to get more unstable. Getting back to seeing marriage as the solution for loneliness, how many couples live in the same house but barely speak, rarely if ever have sex, share little if any affection, and basically live separate lives? Someone is there if you fall, maybe. Other than that, the daily grind of existing without thriving deadens imagination and creativity. That kind of an existence compromises and destroys the soul, because their is no growth or happiness that enlivens it.

The judge is talking about an ideal and yet, most marriages don't even start with that ideal manifesting in their lives. Why can't we deal with reality honestly in our country? When can we all stop pretending?