Like any other night, as my roommate and I tried to fight off slumber, we started a random discussion about life. Last night’s tangent was nothing out of the ordinary for us, but it made me wonder about our futures… in particular our friend’s futures.
After watching some run of the mill comedy (The Game), a character served her husband with divorce papers citing “emotional cruelty”. We then started talking about prenups and if we’d sign them, make our fictional significant others sign them, what kind of clauses we’d input and how we’d get the most amount of money from said fictional person (especially if he cheated).
This then led us to play a game called “Which of Our Friends Would Cheat on Their Spouse” and our assumptions and findings were quite interesting. We played the game with all of our closest friends (guys and girls) in mind and we concluded that most of our friends would most likely step out on their spouse at least once during their marriage.
[There are even some we think would have a whole separate family in another state/country, but that’s neither here nor there.]
While this game was fun for the eight or so minutes that we played it, it made us wonder:
1. Why do we think these (horrible) things about our friends?
2. Does this categorize our generation in some way? If so, what does this mean?
3. Will our generation be the one that changes the ideal of the American family?
As I try to address these points, I want you to put yourself in my shoes. What do you think of your friends? Would your opinion of your inner circle be vastly different or sort of similar to mine? At the end of the day, I’m not saying that my friends are moral less scum bags who respond to any and every kind of temptation. Rather, I’m saying that being a part of a self-centered, narcissistic, temperamental generation, I think most of the people I know have the capacity to be unfaithful.
In college whenever we had a crazy night and people used the excuse “oh, it just happened” I usually gave them a glaring look that kind of summed up my judgement of their character. Now, I’ve come to understand that sometimes things DO just happen and I have to wonder what the outcomes of these situations will become. Now that we’re older and “adults” and alcohol is a staple in the food pyramid (next to the fruit, above the bread group), this ‘liquid courage’ can blur some moral lines and the ability to direct our moral compass could/can/might be increasingly difficult with age.
Typically we’re always talking about the ‘what ifs’ and ‘when it happens’ and ‘I’m so excited for’ our future families and how they will develop. However, we’re overlooking the day-to-day activities of chores, and soccer practice, and potential financial arguments that usually become staples in a marriage. When I think of people cheating, I think of people trying to find that honeymoon stage again. A time where you’re still getting to know each other, going on interesting dates and not worrying about if Alex(is) washed the dishes and paid the mortgage.
As we delved into this topic, we concluded that maybe our generation doesn’t really fight for anything. If we had to choose between fight or flight, most of us may take flight as it’s usually easier and ‘less drama’ than trying to fight for something, anything. Marriage is hard and clearly something worth fighting for if you choose to make that bond. However, I don’t think it’s as easy to stay faithful as it was for past generations. Today, people can literally have contact information and profiles and pictures of a plethora of people through dating apps, social media, heck even old school email – all with a touch of a button on their misc devices. With current statistics citing marriage at a decline and divorce on a rise, I wonder how this generation will impact these statistics over the next 20 years. The below gif created by Movoto explains the marriage decline by state.
I’m not saying that infidelity is the source of America’s marriage slump. I’m just saying that if you’re honest with yourself and check your friends and your surroundings, you may see that long-term commitment and marriage are not as highly regarded in society anymore.
What started off as a funny joke, ended up as a stark look at our friends, our future and how the two can intertwine in the most interesting of ways. I’m intrigued to see how the future unfolds and learn how our predictions were drastically misguided (we pray).
Song of the Day: Confessions Part II – Usher