Death do us part?

I was brought up in a strange house with some crazy beliefs by two people who loved each other very much.  They were married for 25 years until death did indeed part them.  I always said that I would only ever get married once and that it would be for life.  I got married on the 30th June 2012.  My divorce was finalised on the 24th of October 2014.  I was crushingly disappointed that I couldn’t mirror my parents’ unwavering love for each other and I had in fact chosen someone totally wrong for me to marry.  I was terrified that my Dad, after being so proud that I was finally doing something “proper”, would be angry, let down etc by my lack of staying power.

Happily my Dad seemed to be supportive and understanding, traits that he seems to have developed since marrying my wonderful step mother.  I marveled at my Dad’s ability to not just once, but twice find someone to love him and his strange, strict unwavering opinions, many of which I have disagreed with.

This morning I found out that maybe my Dad is not that awesome at marriage after all.  And maybe he will be following me down the same path to the solicitor.  I am a 35 year old woman, this has devastated me.  What is worse is that my lovely step mother came to see me to ask questions about my father and his past behaviour to see if his recent actions were a one off or something that has happened again.  I couldn’t get my Dad’s back and defend him.  He is still quick to anger, slow to forgive, irrational, over opinionated and judgmental. I refuse to lie to this woman who I love and hold in a maternal way very close to me.

I think that we should look at marriage vows and maybe rewrite them.  If they were clearer perhaps then we could pull partners up on breaching the contract, or decide that we shouldn’t enter the contract in the first place. The traditional church of England vows are as follows:

‘I, (bride’s name), take you, (groom’s name)
to be my wife/husband,
to have and to hold
from this day forward;
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part’

I think there should be an amendment as follows:

‘I, (bride’s name), take you, (groom’s name)
to be my wife/husband,
to have and to hold
from this day forward;
for better, for worse ( not including cheating, violence, lying,  or being a massive dickhead all of the time and feeling like you never have to say sorry just because we are married)
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part’

When I realised that my Dad was just a bloke and not a super hero, I took it pretty hard.  The same when I discovered that he did not in fact know everything there was to know, and that some of the things I had taken as gospel were actually just from the gospels in the bible and that is just a story.   This morning realising that he might not have someone to take care of him and snuggle up with him on cold nights has broken my heart a bit.  Also I hadn’t realised that I was still idolising my, albeit slightly undeserving father, for anything but it turns out my need to elevate him had turned him into the winner for the “best at marriage” trophy.

Just when you think you have things figured out someone pulls the rug out from under your feet all over again.

One comment

  1. Love this post – straight from the heart and blisteringly honest (I like honest!). You write beautifully too. Sorry to hear you’ve got this drama going on in your life now though.

    The whole idolising the parent thing resonates with me… did that for years with my (largely absent from my childhood) mother. Put her on a very high pedestal, it was inevitable she would eventually come crashing down.

    It can be very disappointing when you realise that your folks are human too. Though I’ve learnt to love mine all the more for it now (though I won’t lie sometimes they still frustrate the heck out of me). I connect with them now more on a compassionate humanandthusfallible-to-humanandthusfallible level, rather than the wow you’re amazing idol level.

    Like

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