Will You Marry Me? No. No. No. And…

Will You Marry Me? No. No. No. And…

Once Upon a Time…

…There lived a princess. Some called her rotten, spoilt to the core. “A fucking spoilt princess!” The exact words spat; spittle almost landing on her cheek, once or twice. Mostly by those jealous of her and all that they accused her of: “Everything always falls into your lap!” Blah blah and more blah. Didn’t realise there was anything wrong with things falling into one’s lap, she said once. That almost caused WWIII.

Perhaps their mothers didn’t teach them manners. Remember… “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Naughty! Naughty!

What others, still to this day, fail to understand… The reason she is so quiet around some. She learned manners. Digression alert. Okay, yes. Another story for another time.

Back to the Once Upon a Time princess.

She lived her life differently from other girls, adolescents and now adults. She thought long and hard about life-changing decisions. Made mistakes, didn’t listen to advice, learned from such mistakes and sometimes chose not to learn, created her triumphs and losses, accepting the inevitable consequences and building her life on her terms, sometimes considering others. Mostly radically accepting all. ‘Mmm… If I behave in that way then that happens. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out LIFE.’

Today, her partner read from Daily Kabbalah, Gershon Winkler. Most apt!

 

Day 292

In the eyes of God, personal insight is more precious than Divine Revelation. For if you depend exclusively upon scriptures and the teachings of religions and of the masters but have no personal insights of your own, it’s all worthless.

–Second-century RABBI AKIVA

In Midrash O’ti’ot D’Rebbe Akiva, O’t Bet

 

With time, she began to realise she didn’t need a man. She wasn’t happy growing up under someone else’s control. You must do this; you must do that. When you find the right man, you can settle down and have children. She can…? Only then will she be happy? This didn’t feel right to her. Her happiness depending on settling with a man and bearing children. And before she was in the third decade of her life? Fuck that for a joke!

Would she ever truly want such? What if she didn’t know what she wanted, and felt a burning desire to explore the world. Her wanderlust began incessantly at age 16 and still, it rages on and on into uncharted territory, the wilder the better.

This was all crazy-making to her. And she tried, tried to fit in. Fit in with other people’s misery?! Stuck in the same place, doing the same things, day in, day out. She seriously admired those who could do it. What did they have that was different? What gene was she missing? The settle-in-one-place gene. The questioning did not last for long.

She adored adventure and she relished the way she chose to live her life.

“There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection, living authentically. To me, that is the true essence of beauty.”

Will You Marry Me? First proposal. Still a teenager; the first lover to buy her an elegant diamond engagement ring died. That ended that then…

Will You Marry Me? Second proposal. At 21, her lover proposed to her with a ring she had designed. A few months later she threw the rock back at him and packed her bags for good. Why did she get rid of the ring? Damn!

Will You Marry Me? Third proposal. A few years on, while abroad she met a man she soon moved in with. He already had a 14-year-old son and started talking about wanting a child with her. Less than a year later, she ended things.

Will You Marry Me? Forth proposal. Another few years later, a man proposed to her after 3 months of dating. He said they could be engaged forever until she was ready to marry. She never wore the engagement ring on the right, which happened to be the left, finger. He thought she felt ashamed of him. No, she wasn’t ready and didn’t appreciate being pressured. Moving on swiftly.

Was there something wrong with her? At 30+, She still couldn’t find the right man to settle down with and get married and have those children; society’s perfect plan. The big issue was, she wasn’t looking for the “right” man. All she desired was unadulterated excitement. It didn’t matter what form it came in and on which continent. Perhaps she needed to get that all out of her system for good first and then…

Besides, Why was this even a need of hers? All she had to do was look at the divorce rate statistics. Enough to wake up a sloth from its lifelong slumber and change its sleep-induced ways.

Okay, does she need a relationship? marriage with a man to have a child with? No. There were ways around this. Did she want to bring up a child on her own, without the child knowing its father? Was this fair on the child? What’s unfair and cruel is to bring up a child in an insecure environment where the parents aren’t happy with each other or themselves alone, to begin with. All the pros and cons, she worked through, taking into account with the greatest of care and deliberation.

Also, not forgetting the irreversible issues (until we all act) with overpopulation and the human race destroying the natural world.

Again, a few years later, she starts a new relationship. Marriage and children came up early on in their courtship. Yes, she wants to get married and have a child.

‘Why do you want to get married?’

‘Mmmm…’ Damn good question, she thought before answering her boyfriend. ‘I’ve never been married and would like the experience. I quite like the sound of referring to you as my husband, rather than my boyfriend or partner.’

Her boyfriend laughed. ‘I’ve never heard anyone say they want to marry for the experience of being able to call someone their husband.’

‘Not just someone, you, silly!’ She reiterated.

‘And then what about divorce?’

‘Oh, yes,’ she said, ‘I’d need that experience too.’ She cackled.

‘You witch!’ He said.

After much thought, she said, ‘Okay, let’s get engaged and see how we feel. We can be engaged indefinitely. I’m not in any rush to get married. I think I prefer being Miss rather than Mrs. I don’t want to change my name and belong to anyone.’

‘I don’t understand,’ he said. ‘I thought you wanted to get married?’

‘It’s my prerogative to change… And,’ she carried on, ‘I will never want a “traditional” patriarchal wedding. Don’t get me wrong, those that want one I admire, I take my hat off to them. I couldn’t think of anything worse for me, for us, waste of time, money and unwanted anxiety of pleasing everyone else. Who can come and who can’t? Too ridiculously absurd for me to even entertain in my brain. I am not dressing up as some princess in white and standing up in front of all to make promises we probably won’t end up keeping. I always said I’d wear a blue or red dress… Ah, we can get married in a register office secretly, no one else around or on a remote island just with a few special others that celebrate our union.’ She paused. ‘Oh, I know! To make it truly magical, ja, offer everyone an experience they’ll never forget.’ She stopped for effect.

‘And what would be an unforgettable experience exactly?’

‘Magic mushroom risotto! A pot with and another without… With a warning attached, of course. And then you and I, and a Captain, sail off into the proverbial sunset, literally, or should that be sunrise? leaving everyone else in our wake. Drum roll please.’

‘You have a deal,’ he said gleefully. She didn’t take him seriously. Maybe she could work on him… Or do it without his knowledge and surprise even him. She could feel her cogs churning overtime. That’s enough of a reason to marry… A Magical Mystery Marriage Ceremony.

When he proposed he did so with a ring that wasn’t the one she was designing. There were issues with the gems and it was on hold to be shipped from Africa. How could she not have diamonds and sapphires from Africa? She wanted what she wanted; she could wait, however long it took. Also, she was taking a break…

Again, he exclaimed he didn’t understand. Perhaps You never will, she retorted.

How do woman and man even “be” together, never mind last forever? We are always changing constantly. Change is the only constant, she constantly reminds herself. Are we truly on the same page when it comes to so much that we ought to be on the same page over? But do we have to be? Who says? And when we are on different pages, not even contained within the same novel, how do we work through such conflicts?

A therapist said to me once… Stop trying to fit round pegs in square holes… That slapped me in the face.

She decided, she didn’t want to be a princess anymore, whatever that meant, and felt the most important thing in life is to know who you are, know what you truly want and if in any doubt take more time to figure things out. Take all the space needed to learn more about your needs and why they are a necessity. It applies to all relationships, all involved in each relationship.

Do those in my life respect the choices I need to make to create a life worth thriving? One of the million-pound questions one has to ask oneself.

Not Living true to her values was what caused the unnecessary stress and anxiety, sadly not knowing why things were truly amiss for a long time. Only over the past few years while understanding what it means to live authentically, eliminating unnecessary drama in her world and helping others to do the same, she has become freer in mind, heart and soul. Her relationships have strengthened and those close have pointed out the noticeable difference in her.

She now embraces her life and all its lessons that enrich every one of her experiences. The good, the bad and the deliriously ugly.

Divorce Rates Around the World: A Love Story

Worldwide Growth in Rates of Divorce

Globally, in the nearly four decades between 1970 and 2008, the divorce rate has more than doubled, from 2.6 divorces for every 1,000 married people to 5.5. Those results are averaged across all the regions of the world that they studied.

Different Rates of Divorce in Different Regions of the World

…The divorce rates for Northern Europe and Western Europe, including the Scandinavian countries, are all fairly high, ranging from 4.03 for France to 6.22 for Denmark and 6.55 for the UK.

What Is Different about the Nations that Have Higher Rates of Divorce

They have a higher level of economic development. One of the most powerful predictors of the rate of divorce is a country’s gross national income (per capita). In wealthier countries (as measured by gross national income), a greater proportion of people get divorced.

More of their women are in the workforce. Countries with a greater percentage of women (ages 15 and older) in the labor force have higher rates of divorce.

They are more highly educated. Nations with more people enrolled in secondary education have higher divorce rates.

They have lower proportions of Catholics. Nations with proportionately more Catholics have lower rates of divorce. Nations with greater proportions of Muslims also have lower divorce rates, but the results are not always statistically significant.

They are more likely to be part of international organizations and treaties. The authors believe that when nations sign onto international non-governmental organizations and treaties, they are more likely to be influenced by global norms and ideas such as individual rights, the importance of consent, and the freedom to choose one’s own destiny. An example is the Convention to Eliminate All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

The authors see a country’s ratification of CEDAW as an indication of its “commitment to the cultural principles of individualism and gender equality.” Nations with higher rates of membership in international non-governmental organizations and treaties have higher rates of divorce.

Why Divorce Stories Can Be Love Stories

Divorce can be a devastating experience for the adults who are splitting as well as their children. But it can be an empowering, and sometimes even life-saving, choice when the alternative of staying in the marriage is even worse.

Some marriages are abusive, posing risks to the emotional and physical well-being, and even the survival, of adults and children. It can be an act of love for yourself and your children (if you have any) to leave such marriages, especially in the face of an uncertain life outside of marriage and threats from the abusive spouse…

The rest of the article on Psychology Today here.

 

 

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