Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days? - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?



While I realize that the challenges couples face today are much different than they were 20 years ago, sometimes it feels like modern day relationships fall apart much easier.

What do you feel is the reason for that? Social media? Life styles that have become far too busy?

Do we simply give up too easily?

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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 10:59 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

I feel like marriage is no longer a death sentence these days. You aren't forced to make something work that shouldn't because of religion or what society told you. It amazes me how many people stay married for the convenience (kids, money) and live an unhappy life.
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 11:49 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Originally Posted by VS Glen View Post


While I realize that the challenges couples face today are much different than they were 20 years ago, sometimes it feels like modern day relationships fall apart much easier.

What do you feel is the reason for that? Social media? Life styles that have become far too busy?

Do we simply give up too easily?
Whatever reason one wants to find to end a relationship or deem it tiresome, they'll adhere it. There is no blanket foundation, just a multitude of facts convoluted by one undeniable fact, what does my relationship do for ME?!. The WE part died a long time ago. But please, pick any particular instance and save for abuse or mistreatment everyone has a reason nowadays to abandon a relationship.

" Now Fasten those seatbelts and hold onto your valuables, it is going to be a bumpy ride"
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 03:16 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Originally Posted by VS Glen View Post

While I realize that the challenges couples face today are much different than they were 20 years ago, sometimes it feels like modern day relationships fall apart much easier.

What do you feel is the reason for that? Social media? Life styles that have become far too busy?

Do we simply give up too easily?

Your premise is wrong.

The challenges couples face today are pretty much the same as they were 20 years ago, the only difference is that today we are no longer expected to suffer in silence, or grin and bear it, or habitually deprioritize ourselves in order to remain married.

People don't walk out of a marriage over flimsy or temporary problems. They never have and they never will. Whether the left behind spouse agrees or not, leaving a marriage has always been and always will be serious business and not taken lightly.

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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 07:45 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Your premise is wrong.

The challenges couples face today are pretty much the same as they were 20 years ago, the only difference is that today we are no longer expected to suffer in silence, or grin and bear it, or habitually deprioritize ourselves in order to remain married.

People don't walk out of a marriage over flimsy or temporary problems. They never have and they never will. Whether the left behind spouse agrees or not, leaving a marriage has always been and always will be serious business and not taken lightly.
I see it as going from suffering in silence to suffering in exposure. Instead of individuals dealing with relational problems between partners, they are now aired to friends, family and social media. Not only do the individuals that are publicly voicing their problems divorce themselves of responsibility, they also accept the "advice" from others, which is typically slanted towards refusal of forgiveness.

I disagree that people don't walk out over flimsy or temporary problems. This over-exposure of problems actually escalates and blows them out of proportion. Small problems become big problems when the 'victim' has moral support from many others on their side. Campbell and Manning's Microaggression and Moral Cultures explains a lot of this behavior, although it wasn't targeted for romantic relationships.

In fact, we are now in the era of self-expressive marriages, or all-or-nothing marriages. These arrangements are composed of individuals that ask "what am I going to get out of this relationship" instead of (principally) "what can I put into this relationship".

As was hinted at first, we are moving towards a more unforgivable stance to perceived acts of emotional aggression. This means that the 'victim' will or must experience emotional trauma, as refusing to forgive results in a permanent emotional wound. We left behind the "stay together no matter what" arrangements (thank goodness) but seem to have forgotten to take commitment and forgiveness with us into our new arrangements.

Yes, relationships fall apart easier these days. Many relationships that can become totally blissful are discarded as if they were trash. Much of the fault is on society for engendering this mentality. We can unlearn it and replace it with respect, acceptance and forgiveness.


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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 08:18 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Originally Posted by Relationship Teacher View Post
I see it as going from suffering in silence to suffering in exposure. Instead of individuals dealing with relational problems between partners, they are now aired to friends, family and social media. Not only do the individuals that are publicly voicing their problems divorce themselves of responsibility, they also accept the "advice" from others, which is typically slanted towards refusal of forgiveness.
I would hope the scenario you describe is one that is outgrown at some point in early adulthood. It doesn't take a relationship expert to know that there are two sides to every story.

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I disagree that people don't walk out over flimsy or temporary problems. This over-exposure of problems actually escalates and blows them out of proportion. Small problems become big problems when the 'victim' has moral support from many others on their side. Campbell and Manning's Microaggression and Moral Cultures explains a lot of this behavior, although it wasn't targeted for romantic relationships.
Small problems become big problems when they are not dealt with. At any given time here on TAM, there are usually a few threads involving a young couple that is in crisis over a series of small problems. That crisis is caused by an inability to effectively communicate and no amount of forgiveness will alter the inability to communicate. However failure to learn better communication will result in relationship failure.

I am unfamiliar with the article you referenced but look forward to reading it.

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In fact, we are now in the era of self-expressive marriages, or all-or-nothing marriages. These arrangements are composed of individuals that ask "what am I going to get out of this relationship" instead of (principally) "what can I put into this relationship".
Very few people enter marriage aspiring to put everything they've got into making it work. I would go so far to advise that goal be cause to NOT get married. We enter marriage because we are starry eyed and crazy in love and as a result we *think* we've got the best chance of making it work. Only once the bumpy roads hit do we realize that if we want to have a good marriage we have to be willing to make it work and sometimes that means forgiveness but most times, IMHO, it means learning to be a better spouse in order to get a better spouse.


Quote:
As was hinted at first, we are moving towards a more unforgivable stance to perceived acts of emotional aggression. This means that the 'victim' will or must experience emotional trauma, as refusing to forgive results in a permanent emotional wound. We left behind the "stay together no matter what" arrangements (thank goodness) but seem to have forgotten to take commitment and forgiveness with us into our new arrangements.
Perhaps what we have neglected is not forgiveness but life long learning? Few enter marriage with the perfect skill set required to cope with life's challenges not only as a couple but also as an individual. Perhaps that's what we see happening today? Our helicoptered children are growing up and are not skilled enough to cope with life as an individual, let alone as a couple.

Quote:
Yes, relationships fall apart easier these days. Many relationships that can become totally blissful are discarded as if they were trash. Much of the fault is on society for engendering this mentality. We can unlearn it and replace it with respect, acceptance and forgiveness.
Perhaps you are right and relationships are falling apart easier today than they were 20 years ago. I still assert the challenges young couples face today are essentially the same as they were back then. Maybe young couples today are less well equipped to take responsibility for making it work.

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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 08:28 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

Add the sad fact that the mega-trillion dollar family law business dictates the command that it does, I really feel that they at going to make things foremostly easier but rather pricey for divorce to happen, i. e. No-fault divorce laws and rules of court. The courts are tired of contested trials and simply want to be nothing more than a "stamp pad" where the litigants shell out their thousands of dollars and have the court validate the wishes of the person who has the greatest likelihood of shelling out the lions share of the money!

To quote the traveling preacher from O Brother Where Art Thou?, "it's all about the money, boys!"

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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 11:07 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Originally Posted by VS Glen View Post
While I realize that the challenges couples face today are much different than they were 20 years ago, sometimes it feels like modern day relationships fall apart much easier.

What do you feel is the reason for that? Social media? Life styles that have become far too busy?

Do we simply give up too easily?
No. It's about the same.

It is not clear if you are talking about marriages or unmarried dating or ONS off tinder or POF.

Individuals are waiting longer to tie the knot if at all and that is a very good and responsible thing to do since divorce is so costly and painful and the cause is often a lack of maturity and experience.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-15-2016, 11:50 PM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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I am unfamiliar with the article you referenced but look forward to reading it.
Firstly, you make some very astute observations and arguments. I greatly enjoyed reading your post.

Go here to read about the aforementioned work by Campbell and Manning

Where microaggressions really come from: A sociological account | The Righteous Mind

This is a link to the full work as well:

Microaggression and Moral Cultures | Jason Manning and Bradley Campbell - Academia.edu


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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 12:52 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

My marriage is almost 50 years old. All of our friends are similarly situated. When I was young a divorced woman was seen as a damaged woman. Women who had premarital sex were ****s and damaged goods not suitable for marriage, just someone you can have casual sex with. We had no internet or cable TV to make divorce into sitcoms and cheating the subject of movies and TV shows. When I married, I married a 20 year old virgin after having sex with all of my previous girlfriends. I feel hypocritical about it now but back then that is what most of us men did. There were women to have sex with and women to marry.

Despit the stigmas, even good girls were having sex with men if they were engaged or thought that they would marry someday. Premarital sex and cheating goes on despite what society and religion think about it. We are governed by our hormones and when emotions come into play, we all make bad decisions. Now we have TV sitcoms about divorced people, cheating and casual sex. We are exposed to those things all the time until they do not feel as bad as they used to. Men and woman see how a husband or wife should behave from TV and movies. There are those who get their idea of what marriage and relationships should be from the media and if it does not work out that way, they are dissatisfied.

We have very large websites for cheating spouses to hook up with others and free porn. The internet is filled with posts from husbands who want their wives to act and behave like what they see in porn. If they do not, they grow dissatisfied and seek it elsewhere. Today people are used to divorce, casual sex and cheating. They see if every week on their TV's or the movies. It is not shocking or carry a stigma like it did in my younger days. Divorce is also much easier to get today. When i lived in Texas it costs you $250 and an even split of the property and you were divorced in 3 months. My neighbors would divorce every time they had a major argument. They were on their 5th divorce when we moved. My best friend was on his 3rd wife in 3 years. Back in the ancient times where I lived, there was also a lot more religious people who just did not go to church on Easter and Christmas. For Catholics there was the problem that if you divorced, you could not get remarried in a church again, unless you knew the right people and made good donations to get your marriage annulled.

Now, after the first wedding, no one cares how they get married the subsequent times. The point is that unhappy couples stuck together and found ways to work things out. Now, it is much easier to just get up and leave. I am seeing younger couples we know, divorce at an alarming rate. Back in my day I did not see that until the 70's. I think we all have seen the studies that show the divorce rate keeps climbing over time, as does the cheating rate. It is so much easier to cheat and divorce now that it was when I was young.

Personally I do not believe monogamy is workable for many marriages and think that someday we will have short term marriage contract that are renewable. It sounds crazy but if you get into a 5 year marriage contract that has all the same protections and laws that we have now for alimony and child support, what is the big deal if you simply extend it for another 5 years every time if you are happily married. On the other hand if you are not happily married you can plan for the end of the marriage when the contract expires and have a smoother transition and prepare for it.

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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 05:21 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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I see it as going from suffering in silence to suffering in exposure. Instead of individuals dealing with relational problems between partners, they are now aired to friends, family and social media. Not only do the individuals that are publicly voicing their problems divorce themselves of responsibility, they also accept the "advice" from others, which is typically slanted towards refusal of forgiveness.

I disagree that people don't walk out over flimsy or temporary problems. This over-exposure of problems actually escalates and blows them out of proportion. Small problems become big problems when the 'victim' has moral support from many others on their side. Campbell and Manning's Microaggression and Moral Cultures explains a lot of this behavior, although it wasn't targeted for romantic relationships.

In fact, we are now in the era of self-expressive marriages, or all-or-nothing marriages. These arrangements are composed of individuals that ask "what am I going to get out of this relationship" instead of (principally) "what can I put into this relationship".

As was hinted at first, we are moving towards a more unforgivable stance to perceived acts of emotional aggression. This means that the 'victim' will or must experience emotional trauma, as refusing to forgive results in a permanent emotional wound. We left behind the "stay together no matter what" arrangements (thank goodness) but seem to have forgotten to take commitment and forgiveness with us into our new arrangements.

Yes, relationships fall apart easier these days. Many relationships that can become totally blissful are discarded as if they were trash. Much of the fault is on society for engendering this mentality. We can unlearn it and replace it with respect, acceptance and forgiveness.
Please explain to us this need to forgive. What does the forgiver get out of that?
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 05:22 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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My marriage is almost 50 years old. All of our friends are similarly situated. When I was young a divorced woman was seen as a damaged woman. Women who had premarital sex were ****s and damaged goods not suitable for marriage, just someone you can have casual sex with. We had no internet or cable TV to make divorce into sitcoms and cheating the subject of movies and TV shows. When I married, I married a 20 year old virgin after having sex with all of my previous girlfriends. I feel hypocritical about it now but back then that is what most of us men did. There were women to have sex with and women to marry.

There are lots of films dealing with adultery and infedelity starting from the date of 1915. You need only go to IMDB.com and do a keyword search,
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 06:03 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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Please explain to us this need to forgive. What does the forgiver get out of that?
We need to forgive to end the emotional trauma that a past hurt caused us. We aren't letting the perpetrator off the hook; we are doing it for ourselves. That said, relationships can move beyond tough moments of they choose to learn from mistakes and live in the moment.

when we say that something is unforgivable, we are making a future commitment to emotional trauma. The worst thing we can do is keep that pain with us. The perpetrator wins if we do so, but actually loses if we forgive and move on.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 09:37 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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We need to forgive to end the emotional trauma that a past hurt caused us. It is possible to move onwith one's life without having to involve others. We aren't letting the perpetrator off the hook; we are doing it for ourselves. Then how does that keep a couple together. If forgiving someone else is an act for the forgiver's benefit,isn't that kind of selfish? That said, relationships can move beyond tough moments of they choose to learn from mistakes and live in the moment. One can choose to learn from past mistakes - one's own and the mistakes that others have made that should not have been overlooked -- without the involvement of others.

when we say that something is unforgivable, we are making a future commitment to emotional trauma. That is your opinion and ONLY your opinion. For me deciding that something is unforgivable helps me to be more decisive with my life choices in the future. The worst thing we can do is keep that pain with us. One way of keeping the pain with us is by insisting that we must forgive the person who hurt us. The perpetrator wins if we do so Wins what? , but actually loses if we forgive and move on. So you are after retribution after all.
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2016, 10:32 AM
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Re: Do Relationships Fall Apart Easier These Days?

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While I realize that the challenges couples face today are much different than they were 20 years ago, sometimes it feels like modern day relationships fall apart much easier.
Are the challenges really that different from 20 years ago? I remember 1996. It wasn't that different from today as far as marriage goes.

Divorce rates have been dropping since the 90's:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Divorc..._1990-2007.png

In 1996, cell phones were new-ish and were not smart phones. The internet wasn't so much a thing, so not as many forums for people to be louder about their problems, but louder doesn't mean more.

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