I have just read Milan’s post entitled ‘Social Hierarchy’ and I was going to leave a comment but then I realised that a comment just wouldn’t suffice, I felt that the issue raised in this post deserved a proper blogging! I do realise that it is kind of bad timing on my part given Tiberius’ recent announcement (or at least SL’s announcement on his behalf!) but I figure blogging is kinda about different people expressing different opinions and ideas, some of which will inevitably conflict from time to time so I hope he doesn’t mind!
So, in response to Milan’s post: Not married and no children? I wouldn't call that being a social failure, I think of it as... LUCKY! Hehe! Have you not been reading this blog at all!? Kids are trouble, best avoided in my books. Even the term 'settling down', there's the implication that one no longer reaches upwards, strives onwards to do new and exciting things or has aspirations. It kinda suggests a stagnant state. Sorry if this sounds a bit harsh to couples with kids but I feel the need to counter balance the barmy social pressure that Milan seems to be feeling. I read an essay by a woman called Diana Athill recently and it really hammered home the idea that nothing in life is ever stable, no relationship is guaranteed to stay the same ‘forever’, basically people weave in and out of each others lives, present for an amount of time and then a shift in circumstances or a change in feelings means that they are gone or maybe still there but in a less significant capacity. I think there is a sense of importance placed on marital relationships that is completely delusional (Again, sorry Tiberius! But if it's any consolation it's not too late you can still back out, haha!). Ultimately, as a friend of mine once said to me when I was upset over a break up, you're on your own when you die. You may have a husband and kids at the bedside but you are alone. And really I think this idea of 'finding someone' and starting a family with them is actually an attempt to stave off that loneliness, it’s like trying to deny the inevitable by going in completely the opposite direction, the opposite direction to ‘being alone’ being to find someone, ensure that they are legally bound to you forever and then (or before of course!) create one or more human beings together for whom you have to take joint responsibility, seal the deal, if you will! ‘Marriage’ to me is people trying to pretend to themselves that they are not alone when in actual fact they are. I actually would go so far as to think that marriage should be illegal. How can someone at the age of 20, 30, 40, 50, 60…promise that they are definitely going to still view another person favourably right up until the moment they die. People change and as a result their feelings can change. It seems ludicrous to me that marriage is taken seriously as a ‘legal’ thing. I can hardly believe that laws are made based on something as fickle as human relationships and love!?
Sorry if this sounds incredibly cynical but it is something I feel quite strongly about and the thought that someone feels like they SHOULD get married and have kids because it is ‘the norm’ makes me feel a bit sad and so I wanted to give my tupence (or maybe thrupence cos I’ve spouted on for quite a while now!) worth.