Tuesday, September 18, 2012

What does it mean to have a "real" marriage?

There's texting. Skyping. Emailing. But when it comes to keeping in touch with my husband the four or so nights a week that we are apart (we have a dual domicile marriage), we rely on the phone. There's nothing like hearing someone's voice (and I don't know about you, but at a certain point, I'm sick of being in front of a screen). Yet the phone calls inevitably come late at night. My hubby is a hard driving guy, up early, going all day, physically and mentally. (I'm lazier and more slow moving, I admit it.) So while I'm often awake and relatively perky at 11 pm, my s.o. is often somewhere between lucid and a twilight state, sometimes even drifting off as we speak. Not ideal conditions for sharing the nuances of one's day.

On the positive side, we will have five nights together, starting Thursday. I find that too many weeks of only two-day spates together, and I start to feel disconnected--and, actually, single again, in the slightly lonely sense, as opposed to the "I'm freeeeeeee!" sense. It would be nice to be able to sleep next to my honey every night and have coffee every morning. But is that kind of togetherness worth either of us ditching a life we love (for me, an urban, friend-filled existence in NYC, close to work; for him, a more secluded spot, also close to work)? I think both of us pride ourselves on how well we handle the married-but-living-apart thing. I actually think it's easier to live this way, as a married couple, than it is to be under the same roof every day. It requires less compromise. Less checking up. Less politeness. Less of all the stuff that can make a marriage annoying. But I sometimes worry that it demands so little in the way of compromise that it means our marriage is somehow less "real." Then again, what is a "real" marriage? If by real, I mean "traditional," then I guess I have to say that historically, traditional marriages haven't done so great. Which takes me back to where I started: figuring out how to make what we have work best. And isn't that what everyone has to do?

With this ring...

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a fantastic arrangement to me! My husband works 6-2 pm (market hours) then heads home for more work. so, more "face time" and more time to be under the same roof... not sure if that sounds any better. It works for us, and I say don't fix what's not broken :)