I recently attended a wedding of a friend…this is her second….having come out of a ‘train wreck’ of a first marriage that ended a mere 28 months ago. She is financially independent; her children are grown and launched; she has a busy and gratifying career. She started dating online and quickly got engaged to the second man she met. I puzzle over this. It’s not like there is a ticking biological clock! How is it that she is so eager to jump into a marriage when she has barely recovered from the last one? What’s the rush?
These are modern times, and we have the opportunity as mature adults to get to know ourselves, and to know others. We have time to explore our relationships and enjoy lives of independence. When a 55 year-old woman leaps into a marriage with someone she has known less than a year, I wonder what this is really about. Are we so afraid of being alone, we will join into a life with a person who we don’t really know? Do we think we can be happy only if we are married? Research indicates this not to be the case. Married women have higher rates of depression than do single women.
When we marry the first time, we don’t spend a lot of time on reflection. We are young and in love, we are lustful, impetuous, and we ‘want what we want’. We dress up, invite our friends, and have a grand party. We move in together. We trust, hope, that the rest will work itself out. And about 50 percent of the time it does.
At this age however, I think we can be more thoughtful when it comes to love and life. We can take the time to really decide whether we are happiest to be single or partnered.
We can cultivate a wonderful love with someone we take our time getting to know. So I again ask, why the rush?
The second time around there is so much more to consider…financial assets and/or debts borne from prior lives and marriages; children of prior unions; ex-mates still in the picture because of the children; and any unresolved emotional baggage from breakups of said relationships, etc. Divorce rates the second time around is slightly higher: around 60%.
So slow way down, enjoy the courtship, stop to smell the roses together and apart; heal yourself from past hurts. Then after a couple of years, evaluate where you both are and where you are going. If its still a love connection, then I say go forth and unite!