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Even in the Church we got all swept up in issues of nuclear war, etc.And while total silence on that matter from the Church would have been wrong, where were similar statements against the nuclear fission of divorce as our families were split and we were handing out annulments like candy?
I know that there are some who read this who will be angry or hurt and who will insist that my picture does not take into account the special and unique circumstances that led to their particular divorce.
I realize, too, that some people really tried to save their marriages but could not because the other spouse refused. But I only speak to the general problem, not to every specific case.
Talk to them honestly about the absurdities to which they were subjected: they were supposed to get along with their siblings while Mom and Dad played by other rules.
Talk to them about being shipped back and forth to different homes, about feeling guilty that they liked one setting or parent more than the other, about two houses with two different sets of rules, about Mom and Dad bad-mouthing each other, about being subjected to “loyalty tests” by their parents.
Never mind those vows, which have no happiness clause and even seem to imply that there be unhappy times: better or WORSE, richer or POORER, in SICKNESS and in health for as long as we both shall live. Marriage is about “happiness” and everyone’s “God-given right to be happy.” God only wants me to be happy. ” He seemed to have thought of them as only ritual words and considered himself exempt from the vows that had come forth from his very mouth before both God and man.
Jesus wasn’t really serious when He spoke of the cross and our need to carry it through patience, suffering, forgiveness, and bearing with one another. ” After a pause, the husband said, “What vows, Father? In the short span of a few decades, we have come to the point where many do not see marriage as about keeping vows, or commitments, or about what is best for children.
The mother replied, “But I still love him.” My classmate saw through this self-justifying lie and challenged her mother to “get back together with Dad again.” Her mother just responded, “You’ll understand when you get older.” In one short phrase, her mother managed to both patronize her daughter and introduce her to the cynical and compromised world of the baby-boomer generation, a generation that collectively never grew up and that may well be the most narcissistic, egocentric, selfish, and immature generation since the patricians of the late Greco-Roman culture.
Disclaimer – I realize that every divorce story is an individual one.
I remember a high-school classmate, whose parents had divorced, wondering why “the rules” in the house only applied to her.
One day she asked her mother, who had divorced, why she couldn’t love her father anymore.