Friday, September 10, 2010

the long haul

I finally saw Date Night tonight and it was really fun and funny. It’s got a pretty standard plotline: a married couple who have lost their spark go out for a night on the town that starts with one simple lie and turns into a crazy, dangerous adventure that brings them back together. Tina Fey and Steve Carrell headed a fun cast that deliver great writing.  It worries me though, how common this scenario seems to be. There’s a couple in the movie who are breaking up, in explanation of why, the man says he and his wife have stopped being a couple and are now just really excellent roommates. Obviously no one starts out their marriage with the expectation that it will fizzle and die, but it seems like marriages that have lost their spark, gone from being passion-filled to duty-filled and are bogged down by the burden of children, work and finances are far from rare. We see it expressed as the norm in the media and most of us can probably point to many real life relationships that are suffering in this way.  As someone who has decided to join my life with another’s for better or worse, I find this situation terrifying.  Is it inevitable? Is it a product of poor communication and laziness? Is it avoidable if you put in the work? Is it a product of having children and focusing on parenting? I want answers, because that is not the life for me.


  1. I hear ya... This weekend Drew and I watched (500) Days of Summer, and there's this super-cute first date scene where they wander through IKEA and make believe that the furniture showrooms are their family home. And I missed that frothy spontaneous feeling. Somehow IKEA becomes less romantic when you're just trying to find a cheap dresser for your apartment! ;)

    I'm afraid we'll lose our sparkle too. But what I hold on to is that I think I've picked the right guy. Drew and I have never once run out of things to talk about during the past four years-- and we value the same things, like honesty, and bad sci-fi movies! So I know the life we'll create is built on something strong. And no matter how much more prosaic it gets, I can count on those conversations, and sci-fi movies. ;)

    Watching you and Ryan, and knowing what i know of your story, I think you've picked the right guy too. I don't see you turning into Tina Fey anytime soon :)

  2. Thanks Margaret! I like your perspective. I agree with you that finding the right person (not the "perfect" one)and having a strong foundation of shared values, goals and commonalities are vital to a long term relationship. I also like what you said about missing the frothy spontaneity of a new relationship. I've felt that from time to time and it's funny how we always want what we don't have. I remind myself though, how much I wanted to move past that beautiful, agony filled period of uncertainty to the solid love Ryan and I share now.

  3. Best friends and great brain sex over the years makes it all worthwhile, through the periods of not being sure why you ended up sharing the same pressures and responsibilities on the serious side of life. Then there's also that thrill you get when you're doing something together and you can just stop hold hands and look ahead together at at something wondrous. Go for it ;-)!