A month ago Liška at XO Jane wrote Marriage Shouldn’t Be an Endurance Sport. Liška repents of her sin of trying to tempt a friend into honoring her marriage vows (emphasis mine):
There was no abuse. No one had been caught in flagrante delicto. Their kids weren’t acting out. They didn’t even argue. Her marriage to Lee* had simply run its course…
While Ann was crunching numbers, figuring out how to make it as a single mom, I was like Mephistopheles tempting Faustus. She and the kids wouldn’t have to worry about the money if she and Lee stuck together, I reminded her. Was she really sure?
She tells us she was guilty of divorce shaming, something she did despite knowing better:
I’d divorced-shamed my best friend.
Funny, but Ann’s reasons were the same I used when people asked why me and my husband of eight years got divorced. This meant that not only was I a hypocrite, I was the one with issues.
This is the upside down world we live in, where encouraging people to remain married is tempting them to do evil, and Christians celebrate the awesome power of threats to destroy the family in their scheme to invert headship.
Most social commentators wonder why roughly half of first marriages end in divorce. However, the more relevant question is how can marriage stripped of all legal force survive in a culture where it is more moral to encourage divorce, or at least threats of divorce, than to encourage honoring marriage vows. How is it possible for so many marriages to survive when everyone agrees that divorce (and not marriage) is sacred, and the family courts back up this new morality with offers of cash and prizes to any woman who does the right thing and blows up her family? What is the “evil” that threatens our sacred institution of divorce?
Liška understands, at least in her gut, what the most dangerous remaining threat to divorce is. This threat is the status women gain from marriage (or something like marriage). This is what her post is really about, decrying the one force which is standing in the way of moral progress. Liška read the NYT article I referenced here, and was disturbed that women in the comments section were bragging that they had the status of remaining married, a status that Liška and her friend no longer have. This must stop:
The comments section, however, was disturbingly duration focused: “I want to kill him a lot the time, but we’ve made it 20-35-50 years, ha-ha!”
Is quantity of time a measure of its quality? Exactly how many “and yets” does a person have to take?
If law offers an out to marriage, society continues to act as its enforcer. We continue to promote marriage longevity like it’s an endurance event. We reward and acknowledge it by milestone with anniversary parties and bragging rights…