Choosing the Same Partner Everyday Instead of Getting Married

Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell have been a couple for 30 years. She was recently interviewed by O Magazine. The curiosity about reasons for not marrying her long time love always seem to surface during interviews. Why not marry the one person you’ve loved for three decades? Ms. Hawn’s response: “Love is a choice we make every day.”

Oprah Winfrey and Stedman Graham began their courtship in 1986. They announced their engagement 6 years later. It’s a 32 year partnership with no signs of rushing to an altar near you. Still today, similar interest arises in interviews when asked about her personal life. “Why not get married?” The couple has been candid when asked about their reasons for not making it official. Her career doesn’t allow for a traditional lifestyle. Being her beau is an old-fashion guy it would be difficult for her to stick to the traditional role of a wife. The two ideals don’t match up. If they would have married the relationship would not have survived.

Although, by society’s standards these relationship are nontraditional. It seems to work for the couples and many others we don’t hear about in the tabloids. People as a whole have created a pattern all couples are “supposed to” follow. It’s part of a romanticized ideal we have to place love in a neat, pretty little package. The classic response that all couples need marriage and children suits some couples but not all. It is a slightly unrealistic and antiquated expectation which not everyone looks to achieve. It seems unfair to set those boundaries on any relationship as the right way of doing things. The picture of family has been modernized. The roles of women in society have dramatically evolved. We must be willing to bend our way of thinking to allow flexibility for new ways to build relationships. It is fair to say different things work for different people. Isn’t it?

Love is love and it is a choice. A union should not be viewed as less valuable or meaningful because it’s missing a rubber stamp. Nor should anyone feel obliged to answer a line of questioning to satisfy others ambiguity when they see something they can’t understand. The reasons people wed varies across cultures, societies and individuals. The validity of these relationships are acknowledged. Maybe we can begin to do the same for any loving, respectful union of two people that choose to be together every day because they have a desire to be there despite the absence of a legal contract.

The individual decision whether or not to marry is personal. Each of us has a right to choose our own way to live out love freely without judgment.

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