It will be interesting to see what the legalization of gay marriage does for divorce statistics. Given that many lining up to get married have already been together for years (some for decades), there's a chance the rate of divorce will drop significantly in the future.
Marriage between man and woman has long been a punchline in this country. The decision to love, the act of commitment, and the longevity and perseverance of caring for another have not been taken seriously by upwards of half of those who entered into the institution - and all of them have been straight.
This doesn’t tell me why gay marriage would be a bad thing. We’ll get to that later. This tells me why straight marriage is in trouble.
Many of us have been there: watching other couples who seem so happy when we are not – or once were, but are no longer. It rarely occurs to us that, sometimes, when we enter the house of those we see as hopelessly in love, the squeaking we hear is not coming from their charming screen door or their marital bed. It is coming from the rats in the walls.
When our own marriage is in trouble, catching sight of what we think is a happy couple provokes our envy. We remember what we lack and how painful it is. For some, seeing a happy homosexual couple provokes disgust. While envy and disgust are two very different responses, the origin of both feelings is the same: they are happy and we are not.
Regardless of where you stand on the issue of gay marriage, the energy you invest in that stand is energy you’re not investing in your spouse.
I know what it feels like to be in a marriage where friendship has waned, indifference has displaced love, insult has overridden affirmation, and loss has outweighed gain until all that’s left is a gaping wound. I also know the rebirth of love as a decision rather than a feeling one has little control over. I know the refocused effort and strength needed to keep us afloat when it seemed like no one else in the world cared whether the two of us stayed together or not.