My guess is this; it depends on who you ask. Singer, Adam Levine recently stated in an interview for men’s fashion magazine Nylon Guys, “if you don’t get married, you can’t get divorced.” Levine is not alone in his theory. While doing research for my book, working title “Always a Bridesmaid ~ Never a Bride” [scheduled for release in May 2013], I stumbled upon an interesting fact courtesy of the U.S. Census Bureau, that in recent years the divorce rate was going down. I was pleasantly surprised considering I have heard too many times to count that the divorce rate, especially among Christians, was in fact going up. Contrary to popular belief, statistics show that the divorce rate has actually decreased from 7.9% in 1980 to 5.2% in 2008. In line with that, could the divorce rate statistically be going down because the marriage rate has also gone down over the years? In 1980 the marriage rate was 15.9%, in 2008 10.6%.
The “if I don’t get married, I won’t get a divorce” mindset is very prevalent in this generation of adults; with more than half of U.S. adults not married, a record low has been set according to Pew Research: Social and Demographic Trends. The Pew Research also reported that the median age for first marriages has never been higher for brides at 26.5 years and grooms at 28.7 years. In 1960, 72% of all adults ages 18 and older were married – today only 51% are married.
Why are adults now-a-days waiting to get married? When asked, some adults have said they wanted to focus on their education and career first, then get married and start a family. Others cite finances as a reason to delay marriage; and then there are those who cite the divorce rate as their reason for delaying marriage. I personally, wanted to focus on my education prior to even thinking about marriage and kids – and many fellow Generation X women are of the same mindset. I however, knew that at some point that I would want to marry and have a family – I just didn’t think I would marry at the ripe old age of 33. Decades earlier, I would have been viewed as a less than desirable candidate for marriage in my thirties. In the 1950’s most women were married by the time they were 20. Marrying much later than our predecessors is not only the norm but almost expected since now, many parents have an expectation that their child will attend college or obtain some form of post secondary education. Now-a-days a twenty year old about to marry will hear, “you are so young, why are you getting married at such a young age?” more times than they will care to count.
Although statistically the marriage rate is doing down, marriage is still a well respected institution in society. So much so, that now same sex marriages are being debated in court. Back to my original question, is marriage an antiquated concept? Do you think so? What are your thoughts? I’d love to know.
A few weeks ago a guest on the Steve Harvey talk show stated that she had Mr. Right and let him get away. She stated that she did not appreciate him, she did not let him be a man, and she allowed other men to influence her decision regarding the relationship. As I listened to her segment, I was thinking, “first of all, how do you let a good man get away? And second, why would you consult another man, who is your friend, about your current relationship? Those are the things that made me go hmm.
This woman’s situation may sound unique, but it happens more often than a lot of us can believe. Think about it, how many times we have all heard of a woman breaking off a relationship or divorcing a seemingly good man for a reason such as: he’s boring, I fell out of love with him, or I don’t know – something just wasn’t right. These all sound like lame excuses to end a relationship with a good man, but I have heard them all. I once heard the saying, “a bird in the hand is better than two in the bush” – in this situation having a good man who may be boring is better than being single and hoping to find something better; do women who are bored in their relationship end it with a glimmer of hope that they will find someone better, someone more exciting? Are we as women that shallow?
As the segment continued, this lady sought out Steve Harvey to bring her face to face with her former boyfriend to see if the boyfriend would have her back. She realized her mistake – she realized that she left her “Mr. Right” looking for her something better and it wasn’t out there. The truth of the matter is that the grass always looks greener on the other side, but when you get to the other side you realize that all grass needs water and nurturing to grow – and in some situations what may look like real grass is really artificial turf. What a disappointment!
As I addressed in a previous blog post, “The 80/20 Rule”, http://terry411cato.com/2011/08/, my advice is to never leave your 80% looking for 20% because you will soon realize that all relationships need nurturing and every person has faults – you may get the 20% that you are looking for but lose much more.
Well Singles, you can all officially say goodbye to Valentine’s Day! February 15th marks a new day AND today is your day, Happy Singles Awareness Day!
This past week, I’ve read a couple of blogs and tweets that have referred to Valentine’s Day as “Singles Awareness Day”, “Singles Realization Day”, and “Singles Appreciation Day”. None of which existed when I was single. I further researched S.A.D. and learned that Singles Awareness (Appreciation) Day was actually a comedic spin on Valentine’s Day and is celebrated on either February 13th or February 15th, but most commonly celebrated on February 15th, the day after Valentine’s Day. On Singles Appreciation Day many Singles get together, or meet up and celebrate being single. The Singles also buy themselves a gift or do a gift exchange. Some Singles even opt to travel or volunteer on this day.
I was overjoyed and ecstatic as I read the many Facebook posts from those women in a romantic relationship posting pictures of their flowers and other gifts on Valentine’s Day. I was thinking, “Wow, the men are really stepping up this year.” I was also empathetic to those single women who declared that they would purposely stay off of Facebook on Valentine’s Day to avoid all the lovey dovey posts and pictures of Valentine’s Day gifts.
This left me thinking, “Is this day that much of a burden to bear for Single Women?” Do singles realize on this day that they are perhaps once again alone? Have some realized that they are nothing more than a “friend with benefits”, a “bootie call”, or an “easy lay”? Well, Singles if this describes you – cheer up, you made it to February 15th – the day that is all about you. There’s still time: get your party clothes on, grab some friends, go out and celebrate you. You don’t have to be in a relationship to have a good time. You really don’t even need friends to have a good time. If you are a good time, wherever you go and whatever you do, you will have fun. I read somewhere that before someone else can love you, you must love yourself first. What a true statement indeed.
If you were one of the Singles who were down and perhaps depressed on Valentine’s Day – there is no reason for that – you have February 15th. Get up, get dressed, go out and have a good time. You may just surprise yourself.
Last year shortly after Valentine’s Day Actor, Playwright and Director Tyler Perry made a comment that “Valentine’s Day is for Wimps” that real men show their love the entire year and not just one day of the year.
I was like, “yes! You speaking truth Tyler Perry.” I couldn’t have said it better. I agree whole heartedly with Tyler, however, I stop there. As a woman, I would never tell my significant other that Valentine’s Day is for wimps and that real men show their love the entire year. You ask why? Because my momma didn’t raise no fool. First off, words are a powerful tool. The words that a woman speaks to her man can tear him down or build him up. A statement such as that coming from a woman to her man in my opinion will do nothing good for the relationship. This sort of statement to be meaningful must come from another man.
A woman who has a mate that is less than romantic or he is not very thoughtful in the gift giving area may be tempted to prompt her mate to be a little more giving. If you are that woman, my suggestion is to praise your mate when he does do something that you like or find thoughtful. For example, if he is the Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Birthday, and Mother’s Day gift giver – really praise him verbally and let him know how much you appreciate his thoughtfulness for your gift. Even after the fact, sporadically mention how much you like or appreciate the gift that he gave you or how much you think about and like when he did a thoughtful thing for you. Dropping little hints like “I really wish you would be more thoughtful” or “you should try to be more romantic” will not work – this is a woman’s thing and does not work with men. Those statements are too vague. If you want your husband or mate to do something be specific and direct about it – avoid hints because men don’t get them and you will end up frustrated and mad feeling as though he is not paying you any attention.
Now being that Valentine’s Day is a little less than a week away, what are your thoughts? Is Valentine’s Day really for wimps? If so ladies, please don’t tell your man that!
A few weeks ago, I briefly watched a portion of a daytime talk show where they were profiling cheating spouses. There was a wife on the show who was tired of the swinger’s lifestyle and wanted out. The husband however, did not want to let go of the lifestyle. At that time, I was not sure how the “swingers’ lifestyle” operated, but this particular couple invited other partners into their marriage for pay. The man stated that he never had relations without his wife being present. And that this was only for pleasure/leisure, he insisted that he was not having an affair with another woman. The wife was not fully convinced that her husband was not having an affair. After listening to their interview for a few minutes, I was inclined to research the swinger’s lifestyle. And I was quite surprised at how popular this alternative lifestyle is.
Swinging, graduated from wife swapping – a now antiquated term, is defined as non-monogamous behavior among married couples or those in a committed relationship where they have sexual relations with other partners. These hook-ups can take place in informal gatherings, at formal Swinger Club locations or at planned Swinger events. This lifestyle is thought to be born of the 1960s sexual revolution that came about as a result of the birth control pill and better treatment for sexual transmitted diseases. Research conducted since 2000 shows that there are approximately 15 million people who consider themselves Swingers and swing on a regular basis.
I personally do not understand the appeal of opening up your bed of intimacy to other partners. I’ve actually addressed this phenomenon as it relates to marriages in a previous blog post “Open Marriages” (http://terry411cato.com/2012/02/). Some argue that it’s for the excitement, for a change, or as the husband on the talk show for leisure. Me personally, I think opening up the marriage bed to other partners invite in all sorts of problems.
What are your thoughts – what do you say?
Most, if not all women absolutely despise infidelity and cheating. That being said, why are so many glued to their television on Thursday nights watching ABC’s Scandal? The show follows Olivia Pope, played by Kerry Washington, and her associates who are all lawyers but none actually practice law, they work at a Crisis Management Firm created by Pope protecting the images of high-profile clients ensuring that their secrets remain private. And the major “secret” is that heroine Olivia Pope who is the former Communications Director for the President is/was having an affair with the commander-in-chief. The Olivia Pope character is loosely based on former President George Bush administration press aide, Judy Smith who is a co-executive producer for the show.
I wonder, do women love Olivia Pope because somewhere deep down inside they can somehow relate to her? Or better yet, do they want to be Olivia Pope? You have a beautiful, successful woman, who appears to have it all as far as her career is concerned. She however, has romantic ties to a powerful leader and appears to have an enormous amount of control over the affair. Are women excited to finally see a woman enthralled in an affair and appear to not be emotionally overcome by it? Are women vicariously living through Olivia Pope? Things that make you go ummmm.
I am not one to jump on the band wagon of the latest fad or it thing, but I must admit after hearing so much about the show and week after week reading the many posts in my Facebook timeline about the happenings of the week I must admit that I caved in to the pressure and started watching Season 1 of Scandal on my Netflix. Like many before me, I was hooked after the first episode. I’m trying to finish watching episodes on Netflix to get a good understanding of the plot before jumping on the weekly Scandal bandwagon – I therefore stay off of Facebook on Thursday evenings to avoid any spoilers.
The show has faced some criticism, ranging from what exactly is the show about to the plot being the same type of cliché’s that creator Shonda Rhimes is well known for in shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. I personally think that Shonda Rhimes is a brilliant writer. She obviously knows how to bring in the ratings and awards. In addition to Grey’s Anatomy and its spin-off Private Practice, she has worked on projects such as HBO’s Introducing Dorothy Dandridge that garnered lead actress Halle Berry numerous awards and Crossroads a movie featuring Britney Spears that grossed over $60 million; and her Grey’s Anatomy anchors the coveted Thursday night time slot for ABC.
Now, back to my original question, being that women typically frown upon infidelity, why exactly are women so emotionally charged with Scandal? (wink & a smile) Responses welcome…
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,300 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 7 years to get that many views.
Click here to see the complete report.