If you want to know why marriages burst apart, and exactly what it appears like when they do, talk to a divorce attorney. Better yet, read a book by a divorce attorney about why people divorce.
Through the course of our discussion, I asked Sexton why people end up in his place of work, what guidance he has for individuals having difficulties in their marriages, why he calls Facebook an “infidelity-generating machine,” and why he’s still a romantic after all these years.
Exactly what are the most common reasons individuals end up in your office?
They come in for large motives including infidelity or financial improprieties. But from my viewpoint, these large reasons have their beginnings in a sequence of lesser decisions that people make that bring them further and further apart from each other, to the point where those small things no longer feel quite so tiny. Everybody, whenever they get married, begins off with the exact same destination in mind. We want to reside happily ever after. No person ever gets married along with the objective of getting separated.
In David Wolfe’s Bonfire of in the Vanities one of the characters is speaking about how he went monetarily broke and one of the other figures states, “Tim, just how did you end up broke?” He stated, “Well, I went broke the method that everybody does, very gradually and then all at once.” I believe that’s just how relationships stop. Fairly gradually and then all at once. There are lots of minimal things that take place and then the overflow comes, then the larger things take place. The question is, can we avoid the minimal things that take us further away from each other before it’s too advanced?
What’s your guidance to people who are thinking about getting married?
Take it seriously. The most basic guidance that I render to people is to look at it just like the purchase of a car, because I believe, occasionally, people give more thought to the purchase of a car than they do to the choice to get wedded.
If I stated to the average individual, “What car do you really want? If you could have any car in the world, exactly what car do you really want?” many people might state, “I want a Lamborghini. I want a Ferrari.” But if I stated to them, “Well, this car that you choose is going to be the only car you can have for the rest of your life,” you have to modify the evaluation, right? Simply because the car you really want in your twenties and the car you really want in your 30s once you’ve got a pair of kids is extremely different.
So you’d need to accept something that suits every part of your life. You’d have to select one thing that was kind of fun and alluring enough to see you throughout your twenties nevertheless useful enough to manage when you have children. I think it is the exact same when picking a spouse.
At the risk of sounding unromantic, I believe you need to look at a individual and say, “Okay, is this a individual who is going to make sense at all various phases of this journey? Simply because my life is supposed to change. I’m supposed to change. What’s important to me is supposed to change. Is this a individual who can transform with me so that we end up [moving] in the exact same direction? Or is this someone that makes good sense for me at this phase and may not in the forthcoming future?”
That is the first thing. The second subject is to ask your self the question: “What is the challenge to which marriage is the solution for myself?” Whenever someone attempts to market something to me, regardless of whether it is a mobile phone or a new iphone app, I ask myself, “What could be the difficulty this is seeking to solve?” So, if you state to me, “Oh, I’ve got this software package that lets you purchase guacamole online,” well, is that a difficulty I actually have? I believe people often assume wedding is a practical thing to do without even questioning themselves this question.