My Marriage is broken, and I bet yours is too.
Calm down. Let’s look at the definition of broken and dive a little deeper to help us recognize if our marriage is actually broken.
Broken: adjective –
a. separated into parts, damaged, shattered
b. disrupted by change
c. made weak
d. not working properly
e. not kept or honored
f. not complete or full
g. full of obstacles
Are any of these an accurate description for your marriage? For me at least two hit the nail on the head but I am not on the way out to the divorce attorney. In fact my husband and I just celebrated our eleventh wedding anniversary. I’d be lying if I said that it was the easiest years of my life and it would also be equally deceptive for me to act like it wasn’t the most joyous time. The truth is there are times I can see how walking away could be the path I would have taken, but I didn’t. I don’t feel that divorce is the easy choice; I don’t feel that divorce is the right or wrong choice. I do feel that divorce is a choice and it is only up to the two people who made the commitment in the first place. However, I do think recognizing if a marriage is broken is a start to helping make that choice.
I said my marriage was broken and it is. We are parents of three children, one of which has serious medical needs and the others keep us on our toes when she slacks off. We both work and at the end of the day, as much as we would like to, we just don’t have the energy to put a lot into our marriage. We say that we will focus more on “Us” but somehow something always seems to interrupt. That my friends, is a marriage full of b and g which means it is B R O K E N.
How broken is it?
Just as there are many definitions of that word, there are equally as many degrees or levels of brokenness. I think a good metaphor is needed in order to explain this.
(Prepare for a meager attempt at a late night, lack of sleep, after a glass of wine, metaphor.)
I may drop my phone and crack the screen, which would by definition be a broken phone, but by no means would it be an inoperable phone. The phone could still be fully functional but the surface now has a crack. So my marriage is a cracked iphone? Well I guess so, and I need to decide if it can be repaired or just replaced. Obviously a replacement would symbolize a divorce in this metaphor but what about the repair?
Repairs to marriages can come in many forms. You can seek professional help with a counselor, turn to your trusted member of the clergy, read some self help books, or just go it on your own. In the case of my marriage we do a combination of things. We made a commitment to each other to try and repair our marriage whenever we thought it was broken. We are constantly working on it and mending it. To an outsider that might sound horrible but to us it works. We recognize that anything that has been put through as much stress as our marriage will eventually crack.
Now I know there are some couples who have tried to fix a broken marriage and just couldn’t. Half of all marriages today end in divorce. Again, I am not saying it is right or wrong, I am just stating that it happens. I think the most important thing is that you recognize that the marriage is broken. Once you decide that then you can choose what is best for you. Should you repair the shattered screen, upgrade to the latest model, or cut the cord and go phoneless? (FYI that last sentence is still sticking with the phone metaphor)
For those wondering about my shattered marriage, well we have been known to run away together and occasionally sneak out for a date now and then. It turns out that our favorite mending method is taking morning drives around the neighborhood on the weekends. We keep communicating and promise not to hold back. We love our quirky work in process of wedded not all the time bliss because it is our happily ever after.