An ideal marriage is considered to be the one which is based on passionate love. As Frank Sinatra told us, “Love and marriage, go together like a horse and carriage… You can’t have one without the other.” However, this is not entirely correct. There are good marriages which last for a long time without profound love. Consider the following real story of Dan, who is now in his mid-seventies and celebrating the 50th anniversary of his marriage. Dan was single and in his mid-twenties when he was living abroad and met Mary, a woman in her early twenties who came from his country. They were alone in the new environment and connected quickly. They had greater loves before, but became attached to each other, and after a short period they decided to get married. They did love each other, but it was not as passionate as some of their previous relationships. Dan told me that he married because of external circumstances related more to their given situation than to intense love-though they did care for each other. Their marriage had ups and downs and each of them had a few affairs, but they stayed together and were great companions over the years. Dan does not regret his marriage. Some people marry because of external circumstances (such as the wish not to be alone or the wish to have children). Others refrain from marrying or divorce because of external circumstances (such as the possible damage to their present families and work). In all such cases, there are compromising circumstances. The dictionary meanings of compromising circumstances refer to “situations which are likely to expose somebody to danger or disgrace.” The potential danger in situations like Dan’s is obvious: living together without love means possibly giving up the sweetest experience of life and thus ruminating about a possible better alternative. By Professor of Philosophy Aaron Ben-Zeév http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/in-the-name-love/201105/i-married-because-external-circumstances
rather than marry
From “Pride and Prejudice”
by Jane Austen
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