‘Til divorce do us part

I stared at the TV with dismay.
Another celebrity divorce.
I didn’t care much for Russell Crowe or Danielle Spencer.
In fact, I didn’t know much about them.
He was the guy who threw phones and she was once on a really bad late night Aussie drama.
But I knew they had kids.
And, because they were obviously a private couple, I’d assumed they were a happy one.
I mean, we all knew TomKat was doomed from the start, but these two?
It got me thinking about marriage.
With my wedding (oops ‘our’ wedding) only a year away, I wondered if Russell and Danielle had once felt the same exhilaration we did.
That certainty they’d found the right person.
That ‘I want to bond over our babies, team up against our teens, and then spend our retirement travelling together’ kind of feeling.
I mean, did they start out as Learner Dad and I have, believing they’d found The One and would be together forever?
Are we naive to think divorce will never happen to us?
The few young divorcees I’m friends with seemed to know things weren’t right before they even took the walk down the aisle.
One even said to me at her own engagement party: “It’s too late to back out now.”
As I look around my circle of married friends, I think of the statistics – every third marriage ends in divorce.
Who will stay together?
Who won’t?
Scoring career goals and happily bogged down with babies, it’s hard to imagine any of them calling it quits.
But then it was probably hard for our parents to imagine it with their friends in their day.
As I think back to my childhood family Christmases, I can barely count on one hand the number of aunts and uncles who’ve slipped out of my life after a divorce.
Did my parents think, when their friends and siblings were getting married, that they were all immune?
That each and every couple would live happily ever after?
A long time singleton, I once feared the thought of spending the rest of my life with one person.
“I’ll probably need a fair bit of space,” I’d warned Learner Dad when we moved in together.
Then it turned out I was the least independent of us.
Of course, for every divorce, there’s an enduring marriage.
And, naive or not, I’m going to tip Learner Dad and I will be sipping tea outside our winnebago in 40 years time.
After all, we’re already dealing with that most challenging element, the one chucked at unsuspecting couples soon after the wedding – children.
Surely we’re not like them – the celebs.
Learner Dad doesn’t have anger management issues (ie throwing phones) and I don’t have fidelity issues (and spunky Dancing with the Stars partners).
He’s not mixed up with any suspicious churches and I don’t have a career that’s gone rapidly downhill since my days as Joey Potter on Dawsons Creek.
But, despite all that, Learner Dad still does consider himself a bit of a celebrity…
So I might get him to sign a pre-nup, just in case.

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