I know this is a book blog, but I recently bought O, the Oprah Magaizne and I read an article I’m very disappointed by.  At the airport coming home from Disney, I decided to get a magazine to read on the way.  One of the cover articles was entitled, “Inside a Marriage — Confessions of a Semi-Happy Wife.”  It sounded intriguing.  I thought it may give some good insights about how to be happier in a marriage during the difficult child-rearing years.  Boy, was I wrong.

The actual title of the article in the magazine, written by Ellen Tien, was “Divorce Dreams.”  The first half of the article was the author complaining about her husband.  She goes on to say she would never disparage her marriage.  What?  Hasn’t she already done this by publicly complaining about her spouse?  Then she describes her marriage as, “…Indiana, say, or Connecticut – some red areas, more blue.  Less than bliss, better than disaster.”  She claims to be everycouple. 

The rest of the article describes how as Gen X women, we strive for more, as our mothers taught us.  And, when we wonder how things “got to this” we always have divorce as an option.  She feels that in the future, marriage will become obsolete . 

Now, I understand and agree that “marriage takes work.”  And, it’s not the happily ever after of fairy tales.  But, I feel like this negativity about marriage presented by this author is part of her problem.  And, could she really care too much about her husband if she’s willing to complain about him so publicly?

I may sound self-rightous and that’s not my intent.  I understand complaining, to a few select friends so as not to embarrass my husband.  I don’t think everyone who gets a divorce is shameful (my own parents are divorced).  I just think that some people have too high of expectations that could never be met.  And, to encourage others with this negativity is disappointing to me. 

9 responses to “Disappointed

  1. Pingback: Disney » Disappointed

  2. I was thinking about this topic the other day. Many of the women I associate with feel the need to bash on their husbands. I just don’t get into that. Relationships with anybody have their quirks and strong emotions. But I respect the man enough to air my frustrations with him. To his face.

    I also understand the need to commiserate about the frustrating quirks living with someone can present. I have a special friend I can do that with, who knows I’m not complaining about my husband, just needing some sympathy about the work it takes to choose to be happy in some situations.

    I think your insight into the high expectations some people have is right on. There are no perfect people. Including ourselves. I think some people just look for an excuse to blame someone else for their own imperfections.

  3. Yes, the whole attitude that divorce is an option can only be detrimental to any commitment. (Boy that sounds like a mouthful!)

    I am so thankful for my marriage.

  4. I actually found the article to be very interesting. To find that there are other women out in the world that feel the same as I. I can understand why some people may feel the way you all do regarding the article. But it’s just like any other topic that you may feel strongly about…it’s nice to know there are others out there and that I am not alone!

  5. I am also thankful for my marriage. Although there have been a few rough patches but we worked through them together. Not every marriage is perfect and it does take work some more than others. I cannot stand when women bash their husbands publicly. It makes you wonder if they are willing to bash the men they love so much what would they say about us?

  6. I read this article last week and found it interesting ~ and amusing! Although I do have to wonder if her husband did, indeed, drive the car into her and she ended up on the hood, “with my underwear showing for everyone to see.”

    If wives were really open and honest about their husbands, I think most would feel an affinity with the author.

  7. Just wanted to add a link about Ellen Tien, who wrote this in 2002 after she was diagnosed with breast cancer:

  8. I LOVED the article! I was giddy after reading it and wondered if she’d been reading my journal. Everyone in my coffee club read it and it was the liveliest discussion we’ve had in months. We all agreed: the possibility of divorce keeps us and our husbands from completely going to sleep in our marriage. Thank you Ellen!

  9. I hope the husband writes an article about how his wife is a selfish intolerable shrew.

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