Monday, September 29, 2008
Marriage, or "Convenient" Arrangement?
I was driving home last night from a church function, and was listening to the Allen Hunt Show on the radio. Allen's producer read a story recently that custom home builders receive many requests from married couples to put two master bedrooms in the home. Apparently, there is a trend today for married couples to sleep in separate beds.
Anyway, I find this story fascinating - and, I gotta admit - tragic. This is not about a spouse snoring, being sick, or tossing and turning. These are married couples who "co-exist" in the same household with their children, and are making the choice to sleep in separate rooms.
One lady called in and said that she didn't necessarily see the big deal. After all, she commented, she and her husband had no passion in their marriage, and the intimacy they experienced earlier in their relationship was extinguished. As discouraging as this sounded, what alarmed me most was how long they had been married. You would have thought they had been married for 15-20 years. But, no! They have only been married for six years!
I cannot imagine having an empty marriage - one without excitement, joy, friendship, and intimacy. But, the longer I live, the more certain I am that the great marriage relationship Amy and I share is the exception - not the rule.
The woman I mentioned a moment ago stated that she typically reads for a little while, then goes to bed early - around 9:30 p.m. Her husband, on the other hand, stays up watching sports and late night talk shows, and comes to bed around midnight. So, her argument is, "Why would having a separate bedroom be any different?"
And, if this is your marriage arrangement, then maybe there's not much of a difference. But, I would implore you to begin thinking about your spouse and not yourself, and try to begin seeing things through their eyes.
Amy and I agreed years ago to try and go to bed at the same time - together - every night. It doesn't always happen that way, but 95 per cent of the time it does. And, that's a big deal. It demonstrates a mutual love and respect, and it lets your spouse know that you actually want to be with them!
In the end, how convenient is a loveless and lifeless marriage? Even with a fancy separate master bedroom, the perks of vast personal space cannot possibly make up for the fulfillment you get from making your spouse a priority!