Perception of Marriage Vows

get this gear!

Work in Progress

I once had it blatantly pointed out to me that my moving out on him, I was breaking our marriage vows. _I_ was breaking our commitment to each other. How ironic. What I wonder is exactly which vow was that:

"I will share the same house with this person even if they abuse me" -or- "I will continue to live and share my life with a person who refuses to listen to me and take my feelings seriously" -or maybe- "I will never leave the side of the person who blames any discussed relationship problems on me and refuses to see a professional"  ????

This is twisted stuff. IF I ever marry again, maybe my vows should be more specific. But even if I don't, I believe there are things to be said about the meaning of a commitment, and all of them revolve and are contingent upon two people whose mutual desire is to nurture a healthy relationship with each other, not merely a promise that "I won't leave".

A former lover was begging my forgiveness when I decided to inform as to just what type of hell I had been enduring. Not to get into details, but it was months of trying to love someone who wouldn't love back. I couldn't understand it. We had spoken fondly of a grand commitment, and suddenly a stranger was coming to my house four to five times a week to make me feel miserable. There was no pleasing him. I expended extra effort to be affectionate, only to be turned away from. I sat on the sofa next to a block of ice. I lay in my own bed with this stranger in the body of a man I loved, and I'd curl up next to him only to have him roll away. Asking what was wrong seemed to inflame him. Why was he here? I lay here so many nights silently crying wondering what was happening. My soul recognized this horrible place - I had been here before - only for years and not months. When I described this scenario to him after the breakup, he broke down in tears, begging for my forgiveness, sobbing uncontrollably saying that he did to me exactly what his ex-wife had done to him. He couldn't believe he had put me through that same hell that he had endured. I told him I had tried every method of communication I knew to make him see how sad I was and how his behavior and depression was affecting our relationship, only to be ignored. He promised me, and the words still echo in my head, "Gina, your voice will never go unheard again."

Well, maybe he didn't keep that promise, but I am doing my best to keep it to myself, and to anyone else I ever commit to. To never cease to listen. That's a commitment I am willing to make. A commitment to hold up my 50%. My only hope is to find a partner willing to be responsible for the other 50%.


I don't want to enter into a committed relationship simply for security. It seems to me that too often this only leads to two people taking each other for granted which eventually will lead to the demise of the relationship.

Frankly I suppose it would be "easier" not to be in a committed relationship right? Everything I'm leading to points to a relationship as being work, not just being. I still feel that anything worthwhile is worth expending effort. I feel the same about relationships. Having a good relationship offers far more rewards and benefits than having none. But one must want it.... and continue to put in the "work" long after a formal commitment agreement is reached. I think this is where a lot of people go wrong.

Work in Progress

Last edited: 03/30/2006 11:33 AM