Married Parents do not Guarantee Children with No Baggage
Traditionalists often make the mistake of assuming that just because you come from a home with married parents that you are guaranteed a stable, productive, happy life with no baggage. This couldn’t be further from the truth. There is a lot more to family dynamics than the structure.
Appearances can be deceiving, but traditionalists are all about appearances and if a family has the God approved shell or form of what a family is supposed to look like then all must be great.
I come from what appeared to be a very stable, conservative home. Parents married for 50 years with little fighting and they provided a happy childhood. However, as I got older, they weren’t there for me emotionally and were both quite afraid of emotions and dealing with reality. They were physically present, but not connected. They didn’t pay attention to what I was doing, who I was with, or where I was going, or how I was feeling.
I learned about menstruation and sex through some of the very early yahoo searches and chatrooms. This is supposed to be better than divorced parents who may not live under the same roof, but both are still very involved in their child’s life. For traditionalists all that matter is that you live under one roof, not what is actually going on. A father could work 12 hours a day and never see his children and on the weekend he needs his space to decompress from the work week so buries himself in his office or “man cave”, but hey they are married, so children from that sort of scenario will clearly grow up with no problems.
Marriage is treated as this magical wand that solves all problems. Marriage itself is not the remedy or even the preventative medicine. What creates thriving families are a solid foundation and lots of investing time into each other. Many marriages have this, so its assumed it’s the marriage that causes the solid foundation and investment in each other. I disagree.
Marriage acts as builder’s permit or slab of cement to build a family upon, but if you don’t have the skills to build a family and keep a family together, the family will have problems and the marriage will be a shell. The slab of cement will just sit there. It will be that house that wasn’t properly built and with constant problems. This doesn’t matter though to traditionalists. A shoddy built house is still a house. From the outside, to those driving by, it has all the marks of a nice house. Only those living in it experience the problems. If marriage is what creates solid relationships and foundations, then how do close relatives and close friends do it without marriage? Very close friends have the skills to nurture and build each other. A lot of marriages don’t, but yet they get the prestige and blessing of society because they have a permit to build, whether or not they actually build something solid at all. Being granted a permit does not mean you will build a solid structure.
On paper, I was a great catch of a wife, because I come from a family with married conservative parents. In fact, I took that fact to the extreme in my early marriage days thinking that because I come from married parents, that I must not really have to work at my own marriage. I thought it was some sort of genetic thing (in the blood) and that I am guaranteed not to have problems because I come from a long line of long married relatives. Like how some with fast metabolism can eat whatever they want and never get fat. I thought I could do whatever I want and never have marital disputes. Blessed with good marital genes in the family! I’ve since been greatly humbled.
Some traditionalists suggest rejecting women for dating and marriage because they come from divorced homes. They prefer the appearance of a woman from a stable family more than anything. All the while she may have a lot of issues that have been suppressed because of the pressure to keep up appearances that will later come out in their own marriage. Like I said, I looked like the young woman who had it made, but I had a lot to work out still.