The entire Jon & Kate divorce debacle has effectively littered the Internet with endless opinions on marriage and how they have "given up."
Frankly, it's irritating the fuck out of me.
Beyond the fact that this is a television show and you are only seeing what the producers want to you see (i.e., what will get ratings, people) and you have no clue what actually did or didn't happen, there is a whole lot of chatter about how I would NEVER "give up" on my marriage. Never, ever! I would work hard to keep it together, WE would work at it. Counseling. Vacations together. The works.
I'm a big fan of the counseling. My first brief stint seriously changed my life and quite likely prevented me from a starring role on A&E's new show about OCD peeps, "Obsession." It can be great. But it's not a cure all. Going to marriage counseling does not always save a marriage.
Because the reality? Sometimes...it's just... over. Eight kids or not. People change, they grow apart and are truly unhappy in their relationship. It happens, it sucks for all involved, it's a fact of life.
I'm as jaded and cynical as they come, and even I believe the vast majority of people feel like their marriage will work when they get married. That they won't give up. That they'll live happily ever after. Does it not dawn on anyone spewing their opinions on what they would do that they may eventually be unhappy? Because if 20 people comment on a blog about how differently they would do things so their marriage would succeed, statistically, someone has to see that about half of those people are going to be eating their words in 10 years. You can't all be the exception. You can't all make it. You all said you'd never give up...but, some of your marriages will end.
My point isn't to say divorce is good or even that it's inevitable. It is to say that perhaps, those smug marrieds that know everything about marriage and how to make it last right now, may be singing a different tune in a few years, despite wanting to make it work. And, for those going through divorce or those that have divorced, these constant know-it-all comments are hurtful. You might as well point at them and say "I would do better than you" or "you failed." No matter if they didn't "give up" but maybe their spouse did, or if they shrug their shoulders and say, "I don't know what happened. Suddenly we weren't happy." You don't know what you would do. You can't sit there a year into your own marital bliss and presume you know how you would behave 10 years from now.
We all make judgments, it's a fact of life. But going through infertility and constantly hearing people say things like, "If I couldn't have kids, I would..." when these people have no idea what they really would do, has made me rather sensitive to the platitudes I'm reading about divorce.