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I believe in the sanctity of divorce

Yesterday Z and I celebrated work paying him more money and maybe gettng a ginger and white kitten soon, so we went to Bodlean's [which I think should be the heart home of any self-respecing Serb] and ate MEAT, and then waddled around Soho to find somewhere outside and uncrowded where to have drinks.

And later wine-loosened and mellow we talked about human relationships and human separations and I remembered something from my childhood. How along with their fury and love and sadness and bitterness I also absorbed my parents continued, unfailing fairness towards one another. How in between the shouting matches of the impossibility of continued marriage between them they treated each other with grace and their discussions about divorce and how to divide possessions tended to go something like this:

Mother: No, you take everything. I have enough and you will need it more.
Father: No, no, you take it all. I don't need anything to get by.
M: No but you need it more.
F: No you need it more.

And so on.

That despite their disillusionment in each other as partners they remained close up until the end of my father's life and neither one ever tried to cheat or trick the other.

That soothes me in a way no tale of *love until the end* can. Because ultimately I have seen too many broken human relationships.

I do not seek to avoid the possibility of endings, simply to embrace them with grace. To uphold the ideal of the amicable divorce higher than the ideal of *til death us do part*, I suppose because I know that the former can be attained.

And it fills me with comfort more than any tale of long-lasting love can. This idea that it is possible to treat each other as gracefully as we would like to be treated. To have faith in the concept of mutual fairness.

To know that at the ending of things the dissolution of a love doesn't always mean the ending of a friendship.

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 12:44 pm (UTC)
Re: i like amicable separations!
*nods sagely*

and I.
:)
(Deleted comment)
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 12:44 pm (UTC)
Re: kitten!!
waht's more a white and ginger blue eyed 8 week old girl kitten.

maybe. possibly.
if this other lady with two small children decides the kitten would be better off elsewhere.

*crosses fingers*
67threnody
Jun. 17th, 2005 03:08 pm (UTC)
Re: kitten!!
Oh my god. That sounds SO cute!

You need to steal the kitten, if you must.

rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 03:48 pm (UTC)
Re: kitten!!
Meh.
The woman has decided that she's keeping it.
Bah humbug. :(

Z will be guttered. I liked the kitten but it's not the end of the world.
guihong
Jun. 17th, 2005 01:54 pm (UTC)
If every separating couple adopted your philosophy, there would be a lot fewer rich lawyers over here (and probably there as well).

To me, that is the real challenge of marriage: if you find you must live apart, you love, honor, cherish and respect one another in all your contact, no matter what. I see no higher expression of the vows.

gui
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 04:20 pm (UTC)
To me, that is the real challenge of marriage: if you find you must live apart, you love, honor, cherish and respect one another in all your contact, no matter what. I see no higher expression of the vows.


That's very beatifully put *

*says she agreeing blatantly.
mzwyndi
Jun. 17th, 2005 02:15 pm (UTC)
My parents had the sort of divorce they make bad movies on the tele about.

I had a 'dissolution'. We're civil, even when we drive each other nuts. My son will grow up knowing what it means to love enough to part with civilized respect.
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 04:21 pm (UTC)
My son will grow up knowing what it means to love enough to part with civilized respect.

I think truly it's a great gift, whose importance is underestimated.

But I know it's something very positive that I took from my relationship with my parents and that it's really helped me a great deal.
verlaine
Jun. 17th, 2005 03:45 pm (UTC)
I don't know, I tend to think if two people have that much respect for each other, that much "grace" as you call it, they should probably just try to resolve their differences and stick together.

I'm sorry that you have no faith in the permanence of love :(
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 04:18 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry that you have no faith in the permanence of love :(

Well, I suppose I may acquire faith in it if I live it. :)

I genuinely don't think that how long a relationship lasts is a measure of its value, but then again I haven't had very many long term relationships so I may yet change my mind.

I don't think wanting long term relationships is bad by any means, it's just not something that's my personal inclination. :)

I tend to think if two people have that much respect for each other, that much "grace" as you call it, they should probably just try to resolve their differences and stick together.


Sure. I agree that by all means people should try to resolve their differences before they split but I think there are so many outside factors that don't always make it possible. You may love and respect someone very much but fall in love with someone else, or start wanting different things out of life that the relationship may not be able to provide. Human beings and human relationships have varying degrees of flexibility and they may not always be able to adapt to each other's needs.

[Strongly influenced by the example of my parents, I hold the theory that people can love each other a great deal but not be compatible so I'd say that sometimes breakdowns/ups are inevitable despite the grace and the affection].

I love Z, but I know myself well enough that those feelings are subject to change. Maybe in a few years time those feelings will change [and I'll still love him because he is a good and interesting person] but I won't desire him [or him me] and we will decide that we've come to the end of our journey together and part company.

It's not that I don't believe that Long Loves are possible but I aspire more to Honest and Authentic Loves whatever their duration because that's something that's more realistic for me [for the heartbreak of waiting for the one and being let down would be more than I could handle if I started investing that much of myself into a person/idea].

And I know I can't control how I feel, or how he will feel but I can control that I treat us both with as much civility and dignity and respect as possible. And because I think I can influence how I behave ideals driven by behaviour rather than emotion are the ones I work more strongly towards.

Just what works for me.
lillfive
Jun. 17th, 2005 09:04 pm (UTC)
But you know, I don't think it's all about parents. Mine were wildly still in love and would've remained together forever had dad not died. Actually, I guess they were together forever, the ending of forever just coming sooner than expected. With all that, and watching a truly great marriage my whole life, I still don't want to get married. Some of us just don't. If you do, you will be fabulous. If you don't, you will be fabulous. Fabulousness abounds because you aren't basing your entire identity on if you find "the one" or not :)
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 10:18 pm (UTC)
good point. :)

it's a lot to do with individual temperament too.

i agree that it's not just about the parentals, not even in my case, although they did have a lot with teaching me about human relationships.
rainsinger
Jun. 17th, 2005 10:19 pm (UTC)
darling sweetie darling
you're totally fabulous. :D
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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