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BellaOnline's Marriage Editor

Marriage Freedom

Could it be that the reason why people find marriage difficult is that they view marriage as a contractual obligation? A contract implies you are agreeing to fulfill certain duties in exchange for promised goods and services; in the case of marriage, these are love and commitment. But commitment is a stifling word. It binds you to your word when, over time, your feelings about the promises you’ve made could change.

When people begin to view marriage less as a contract (obligation) and more a privilege (reward), they will experience the true benefits of a monogamous relationship.

In marriage, you can feel free to…
• share your innermost thoughts and not be judged.
• let down your guard and still feel safe from rejection and criticism.
• stop searching endlessly through a pool of unsuitables.
• age well with someone who remembers you young.
• discover the world with a trusted companion by your side.
• explore and fulfill deep sexual desires, safely and privately.
• have meaningful discussions instead of making small talk.
• enjoy silence together.
• speak your mind without polite or social political censorship.
• know you never need to be alone in this world again.
• laugh and play with your best, most trusted and loyal friend every day.
• become a better person because you work out your differences instead of ditching relationships during hard times.
• be who you are and still be loved.

Can a non-marital relationship provide these freedoms? Yes, but without a very important caveat: commitment. People who don’t want to take the extra commitment of marriage, essentially, are giving themselves a psychological escape route. Subconsciously, they are saying to themselves, “If this doesn’t work out, there will be fewer hassles” or “I am not locked into this relationship” or “It may be cheating but it’s not adultery because we’re not married.” “I still have my freedom and individuality because we’re not married” and “You don’t own me.”

The whole “We don’t need a piece of paper to cement our love” is a psychological ploy. You may not need “a piece of paper” to represent your love, but if that little piece of paper is so meaningless, then what’s the harm of signing the legal contract? Deep down, people are afraid of making their relationship legal and permanent. They are afraid that this little “meaningless” piece of paper will, indeed, change how they see each other. That it will change their relationship. And it will. For better or for worse? That is up to you. But when you view marriage as freedom rather than restriction, your chances of marital happiness increase.

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Content copyright © 2013 by Lori Phillips. All rights reserved.
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