Shockingly everyone said basically the same thing: agreeableness. Supposedly, having low or nonexistent levels of disagreement, whether financial, moral or otherwise is the key.
So with this said, I'd be curious to know how your profession affects your agreeableness (especially in respect to power dynamics). I wish I asked if they choose to agree, e.g compromise, or if they and their partner were naturally agreeable.
If you care about honesty, or self-respect, or your partner knowing you and how you think -- caving in to everything and avoiding conflict at all costs is the opposite of what you should do.
If you rephrase it as "Don't sweat the small stuff" or "Don't be petty and stubborn about things that don't matter," then it's perfectly reasonable.
My wife tends not to like me describing our marriage like that though :)
In my eyes, the heart of this argument is to avoid the whole idea of "me vs. you". This falls in line with the last part of your argument, but I think it's worth driving home. Learning to approach arguments with the mindset of "even if I'm right, the best outcome is that we both come out of this altercation with a mutual understanding", is much more important than "winning" an argument, and I don't believe that concept can be misconstrued.
As a simple example - maybe you're a woman with an attractive male friend. She knows that her intentions are pure, so why is it a big deal if you go out with him after work? Totally valid.
However, it's important to approach the conversation with an aspect of I understand how this could make my partner uncomfortable, so how do I communicate that understanding and alleviate any doubt instead of thinking well, if my partner just trusted me, then this wouldn't be a problem.
To that end, it's also important to identify these concerns early on so they aren't given the opportunity to fester as insecurities in the opposite party.
Oh yes, oh god yes it can. I'd argue that it's misconstrued often.
I think your example is a good one. It is not at all clear to me that "I understand how this could make my partner uncomfortable, so how do I communicate that understanding and alleviate any doubt" is better, though it might be -- everything depends on your goals and values and true feelings about the situation.
If you think their discomfort is reasonable, or reassuring them isn't go to make you resentful, then by all means do it.
But maybe their reaction, in this particular circumstance, strikes you as absurdly childish. Maybe it deeply bothers you, and your respect for your partner is in peril. Maybe reassuring them would make you lose respect for yourself. If that's the case, you sure as hell better have it out with them.
If you fail to communicate how you really feel, you're going to do some serious harm to the relationship. Be generous and understanding when you can, but make damn sure your choice to be understanding isn't an excuse to avoid tough conflicts.
Edit: controversial arguments come with downvotes, but I'd really like to know your opinion on this.
There are lots of replies about how the spouses benefit from marriage, so I'll add a new reason: children, especially "oops" babies.
About half of all pregnancies are unplanned, regardless of marital status. It's honorable to explicitly define the relationship so the current and future beings affected by a sexual relationship are well cared for. Because of economies of scale, the most efficient way to care for a family is under one roof. There are direct reasons why the poverty level of kids is directly related to the marital status of their biological parents.
The legal contract and the social contract (wedding vows in front of all your favorite people) are ways to ensure the definition of the relationship is enforced by all prudent means.
Of course, you could have sex hundreds and thousands of times during your fertile years hoping that a baby doesn't happen. And you could just get married once a birth is imminent. But over the millennia, most cultures have found that an already established marriage is the best place for a pregnancy.
Anyway, I want nothing but the best for all the single-parent and divorced families out there, but it's not empirically controversial to claim that kids born to stably married couples have the best outcomes.
Whether you have a ceremony or not is not a causative predictor of a stable relationship.
The evidence in the other direction showing marital status is linked with child poverty is pretty clear. Census data shows that poverty rates are five times higher for children of single mothers (1).
Maybe the mechanism isn't clear or something, but the data is stark enough to deserve an explanation about why marital status isn't important to kids.
I would be interested to see research comparing the children of married couples to those of unmarried stable long-term relationships. My hypothesis is that the outcomes would be similar.
Understood. I still think it's fair for the burden of proof to fall on the people trying to explain away current demographic trends. Just because possible mechanisms don't line up with expectations doesn't mean the outcomes aren't actually happening.
And, at some point, there is a distinction without a difference when talking about long-term monogamous cohabitations that do or do not involve a wedding ceremony. In common law, it would be a marriage either way. Maybe the real question is why common law marriages aren't recognized more often now.
If you just want someone to stay with you, that's just a strong form of friendship, and there's no reason to want only "one" such person.
Likewise, partners enable a bit of task specialization. Maybe one of you really knows real estate and the other is great at finding bargains, or managing retirement assets, or any other number of such things: you both get the result of the better partner's ability in each domain.
Marriage is a form of attempting to guarantee that one always has a beneficial partner. Though hopefully they're also a best friend who you enjoy being around and doing stuff with and not just a highly capable android sitting around to help make your life more efficient.
I'm not entirely sure what makes it something to be "stuck in" or all about (negative) compromises.
* I really understood the desire to marry when I found someone who was right for me. My wife and I are highly compatible. It is great having a teammate in life. I had many relationships which were good, but didn't rise to this standard. All the time, I think about how much I respect and value her.
* I value stability for my children. I love my children more than I could ever have anticipated, and the home we create for them matters a lot to me. Also, there is no one else who understands your parenting project the way your spouse does.
* My wife and I laugh a lot together, usually just before we fall asleep or just after we wake up. The intimacy and comfort is fun.
* For me, I didn't like the idea of marriage until I was ready for it. What I mean is that when I was young I wanted to work all the time, and I felt poor and was constantly worried about money. By the time I met my wife, I had had enough career success, and had enough savings, that I was ready to be really generous without feeling stressed about it. I mean generous in the broadest sense: with my time, with my emotional security, with my financial resources. Marriage seemed more threatening or risky before I got to that point.
* The 'contract' is negotiable - we have a prenup. That said, I don't ever expect it to have any meaning for us, but don't get hung up on that.
I could name a lot more reasons, but those are the main ones that come to mind.
My advice is: Keep trying to meet a lot of people. Eventually, you will meet one who after a year or two makes you say "If I could lock this situation in, I would be ecstatic," and she will feel the same way. Then, marry her! The day I got married, I couldn't believe my luck. Many years later, I feel far more lucky than I did the first day.
Also, I love this essay on marriage:
Probably two reasons for downvotes: This seems like stereotypical naivety-driven "everything is broken why doesn't everyone else see it" youth angst without any propositions for things to make people better off instead, and closely-related, it seems unaware of that marriage has been an evolving thing for a long time, not a purely untouched for hundreds of years legacy thing. Consider views in the US on arranged marriages today vs 100 years ago, typical ages at time of marriage, requirements/allowances for divorce, etc. I'd argue most of what you probably want already happens and has been happening for decades or centuries in the form of marriage being continually adopted to the times.
In particular, I'm interested in your "more modern approach" to shared property - from big-ticket items to small-ticket-but-potential-high-attachment ones.
> A contract with high termination fees
Not sure people who are getting married generally see it that way. There are certainly the segment of people out there who view marriage as the thing you do after dating, but there are others who legitimately see it as wanting to spend your life with someone and maybe have kids of your own. When you make that kind of a commitment and mean it, it's not a contract with termination fees. It's a promise.
From that point forward you are doing what's best for your family and not just you...not because you have to compromise on everything but because you love your family and you want what's best for them.
It's not so much a matter of being agreeable as a matter of putting your family before yourself.
The two biggest reasons are: people like security and intimacy; and they want to raise a family with someone.
You can argue that you don't need marriage for those things, and technically you don't, but whatever alternative you land on (especially for raising a family) will likely be effectively identical to marriage in practice. You can opt out of family and long-term relationships altogether, but you'll be missing out on a central part of the human experience.
If the "early termination fees" are your biggest concern, find someone with similar views and get a prenup. Or just stay together without officially getting married. You'll lose tax benefits, but if it's important to you go for it.
If that didn't answer the question you intended to ask, you'll need to clarify what you meant by a more modern approach. What are you imagining that looks like?
There was a time when our ancestors became monogamous, and before that they weren't. So how do you consider non-monogamy more "modern"?
Well, things like marriage are the societal equivalent of that bit of old code. We're 'stuck' with it because (for the vast majority of people, anyway) it serves a useful purpose, one that only becomes apparent when you go without it. That's not to say we can't and shouldn't change the institution - it not like it hasn't been evolving over the centuries - but it'd be wiser to make changes cautiously, experimentally, and locally rather than just 'moving on' as a society.
Which is kind of the answer here: if you spend a lot of time with someone, then the contracts you'll sign (house, bank, etc.) will have high termination fees anyway.
Marriage is a nice, acceptable institution to facilitate family life. Upsides are the ring, the party, taxes, no legal bs when having kids and the ease of buying a house. I've yet to find a downside... Prerequisites are the conviction that your SO is the one you want to be with for a long time, without exception.
I'm curious - what is the more "modern approach"? No commitment, no family?
A couple can believe in love, without contracts on the side.
And if they decide to break up, then let it be so. Marriages more often than not seem to force people together when things are not right anymore, instead of letting them be free to choose something else when love is gone.
You can of course use a non-standard contract. It's called a pre-nup, and it has both the downsides and upsides of a non-standard contract.
I don't have, want, or even particularly like children, and even I have a problem thinking of them as "shares" or "assets" or pre-deciding their fate with a formal contract written before they were born or old enough to express their own wishes.
I'm sure if you were the dictator and God-King of a small country, where you could reinvent society as you wish, you might be able to create something that would fit 99% of the population, since you would be able to forcibly squeeze the behavior of each couple into a few standardized containers with corresponding legal rulesets.
Getting married is romantic and irrational, and that's why we enjoy doing it.
It also seems to offer access to additional social and cultural collateral than just cohabitation and has several inferred expectations in various social spheres.
Parties in a relationship sometimes have wildly different experiences, expectations and motivations "in love" and marriage provides a way to reduce this complexity.
There aren't many things that test your will and resolve more than having to sign a big contract on something. What people will commit to verbally is often vastly different to what they will actually sign to when it's in writing.
Marriage is much more than believing in "love". Marriage can remind you that you might want to stick around even on the bad days. Life isn't always easy, but sometimes it is too easy to walk away from something that is better held on to.
I am not arguing against long-term relationship or against honest and true love, I am arguing against the actual marriage practice.
What's the big deal with signing a piece of paper and having a really awesome party with all your family and friends? I don't get the adversity to the marriage 'practice' (not a bad word choice either, as you do have to practice it everyday).
All relationships have their ups-and-downs, and there may come a time when the only thing holding it together is a promise that was made in front of other people. You may think that's a bad reason to stay together, but the fact is that that (bad) time will most likely pass and if you're still together you may very well find your way back to each other. I know my own marriage has sometimes hung by not much more than that and then we've found our way back.
Of course if a promise you make means very little to you, then so will marriage.
Marriage is not a pre-requisite for going through the up and downs of a relationship. Normal relationships with no marriage have ups and downs too, and if there is mutual understanding and affection it will survive anyways. If it doesn't work, well, then maybe it's better to put an end to it and find a better partner?
I guess my question is, why are we putting ourselves in the corner with a contract just to force ourselves to stick around a little bit longer, since you could do that anyways without that same contract?
Maybe it's part of the human nature to go through this, to find a partner that we think will be loved forever, and then it won't work, and we learn from it, and we make more mistakes until we find the real one. Society tells you to find a life partner between a specific age range, but what if it's not true? What if you must make mistakes, you must break up with a partner, maybe only to find out that you both love each other and come back together. Maybe all of this must happen, but we are not letting it happen because of external contingencies.
In a way it seems like we are artificially containing our human nature.
The reason why we've evolved contracts at all is because it changes how people behave. When people know that bad things will happen when they break a contract, they are much less likely to break the contract. That in turn lets other people trust that the events stipulated in the contract will in fact occur, even if it is against the other party's immediate self-interest, and so they can act on the assumption that that future will be true. So for example: people sign confidentiality agreements with their employers because without them, the employer isn't going to share any information that's important to the business, and without that information, you can't do your job, and if you can't do your job, your value is zero to your employer and they're not going to pay you. Knowing that they can sue you for a lot of money if you spread trade secrets around, though, they can feel reasonably secure in telling you those trade secrets. It's against your immediate self-interest to be bound by any restrictions on your freedom of speech, but it's definitely in your long-term self-interest to have a job and develop professional skills which you wouldn't otherwise have.
So it is with marriage. The reason people get married is because it changes how our spouse behaves toward us, because they know our incentives are much more in favor of remaining within the relationship, and so they're willing to invest more and sacrifice more for your benefit, because there's a reasonable assumption that it will come back around to benefit them. Sure, people can behave that way anyways - but it's often not rational to, and many people get screwed by behaving as if they are married when their spouse actually has no intention of ever marrying them.
In most Western societies there is some degree of protection for de-facto relationships. You can always add extra protections with some form of extra legal agreement.
There's a generalized form of this called "marriage". Like most forms of legal structure that have evolved over the years (eg, land title! Employment law, etc) it has its problems but it's mostly sorta ok for most people.
But if you want to try to optimize that I don't think anyone will stop you.
Edit: There are of course some specific things (rights to children, default rights in case of a partner's death etc) which do require a marriage. You maybe able to replicate some of these things with a legal contract, but it will be a lot of work and no in anyway efficient.
Never claimed as much. I said that sometimes the promise made is the thin string that holds the relationship together at that point in time. Sometimes that is all it takes.
It's the same psychological effect in play as when you declare to all your friends and family that you are on a diet. Once you've made that declaration, you'll be slightly more inclined to stick to the diet compared to just keeping it to yourself and "see how it goes". Sometimes that's all it takes to get yourself through a rough patch.
I see your point at a basic level, but I feel like you're missing out on details that really make an impact in the long run of the marriage itself. Maybe they aren't important to you today, but someday they may be.
Maybe whatever you do can be called a partnership or something else if you're more comfortable with that.
I was a big fan of the subplot of The Office (US) where Dwight and Angela drew up, negotiated, and signed a procreation contract.
The real problem is not defining your personal relationships as you see fit, but in getting the government to recognize that you should have the power to do so. Some politicians are very keen on defining marriage in a particular way, as though it would stop certain forms of relationship from existing, when in reality it just denies to some people the ancillary rights that others freely enjoy by default.
As long as you don't mind the legal discrimination against you, there is no reason for you to get married in the traditional, legally recognized sense. But an awful lot of people like the benefits available only to married couples, which are largely unavailable to those in some other kind of family partnership.
The advice I give to all young people is to never get married, ever. But at some point, many of them will discover seemingly sound reasons to discard my advice, and will do it anyway.
I could definitely make an argument that a lot of those benefits could be done away with though. For example different methods of taxing people, healthcare not being tied to people's jobs/universal healthcare, etc.
Some of this couples will last forever, some will realize they are not meant for each other and they can walk away without ruining their or their partner's life.
Maybe some of them will ultimately be more happy with their lives and meet other people who they really love.
The current legal form of marriage formalizes love in a contract that doesn't take into account the fact that love can disappears one day for no reason, but assumes marriage is here to stay. Or to be more accurate, it does take that into account with a very expensive trigger called "divorce". Therefore the divorce is putting a price to my lack of love, and makes the decision to quit harder. By doing so the decision of staying together, which should be governed by love, is determined by cost, effectively negating the whole purpose of a marriage.
Unless it's purpose keeping two individuals together no matter what, even if there's no love. Maybe it made sense in the medieval era, not in our century.
I had that right. I freely, gladly, joyfully waived that right. I didn't (and don't) want the right to "move away freely". I wanted (and want) to be permanently committed to her.
27 years later, and it was a really good call...
> The current legal form of marriage formalizes love in a contract that doesn't take into account the fact that love can disappears one day for no reason...
There's love, and there's "love". "Love" is a feeling. Love is action - it's what you do. There have been days when I didn't feel loving toward my wife. I continue to act in ways that do her good, though. The "not feeling loving" doesn't last real long when both sides are committed to doing good to the other.
This. This is the key that I think many people completely miss. Today it's so much about "me, me!" but happiness never comes when you put yourself first.
In the end, whether married or not, a couple that separates can either do it amicably or not. You can ruin your partner's life without being married. Like wise, a divorce doesn't need to ruin anybody's life.
What you want is for any partner you get, to be happy to leave whenever you don't want them around anymore. That's is not a problem of marriage. That's a problem of human psychology.
> The current legal form of marriage formalizes love in a contract that doesn't take into account the fact that love can disappears one day for no reason
Maybe marriage takes more facts into account than your "reinvented marriage". I've been married for nearly a decade and a half and have had love disappear one day, only to reappear a couple of days later. If all it took was to pack my bags and leave I might had done it.
Just to clarify, same for my partner, I would want them to feel they can leave anytime instead of sticking around. This topic may came across as a selfish point of view, which is not really my intention, it works both ways. I believe in long-term relationships, in fixing problems together, in building value between two people. All I am arguing is, you can do that today without a contract.
You are correct, a prenup may fix things - but too strong of a prenup effectively invalidates the marriage contract and the contractual incentives in the relationship. Thing is, at the end of the day it becomes a contractual negotiation, but heck, I just wanted to care about my partner and be happy until the end of time, instead it becomes "If you love me, initials here and signature there".
Mind: there are aggreeable divorces. There are also disagreeable ones.
A particular hazard of the contract is that if your co-party is inclined to rake you over the coals, they can attempt to do so with a fairly high probability of success. This isn't a win-lose game so much as a lose-lose one. Unfortunately, other players (in particular a certain class of barrister) may well encourage that type of behaviour.
That's not to say that alternative contract structures might not face similar issues. Human relations are ideosyncratic, messy, and hard to predict. But the current popular form has some fairly notorious failure modes.
What's difficult is splitting things up. Not just the things but also children and the place you live. You have to work out a solution with someone you'll probably have a mixed bag of feelings for and against.
You can argue that people would be better off in the split without having signed a contract with a set of rules to follow if they can't agree. But I'm not sure you'd be right.
Another thing is that I understand you're providing an argument, but I think the idea that love is the only thing keeping people together in a relationship is incorrect, it's much, much more complicated than that.
Divorces, when childless and penniless, are typically very quick and comparatively easy.
When there is a lot of money and a poorly written pre-nup or no pre-nup at all, things get very messy very quickly and can drag out for years. However, that is still just a bunch of squabbling over dollars, guest bedrooms, and pink-slips. Judges and society really do not care about that stuff all too much and the laws are somewhat straightforward, though time consuming.
However, when there are children involved, the Judges don't really give a damn about the parents, usually. It is all about the kids, because they are (rightfully to me at least) the core issue. There are many ways to look at this, but I think the 'evolutionary' approach is the most useful one. Societies that put the next generation above all others tend to be the ones that survive, it seems. Sometimes this is at the cost of the parents' happiness. Sometimes, this results in a particular child being less happy, or downright suicidal, in the end. But if you look at the society to be in competition with other societies, you can see why this tactic is 'best'. Is this the right or wrong way for individual people? In an evolutionary approach, who cares? That said, the environment in which societies are 'living' in is in drastic change currently and we should expect to see some drastic changes to societies, including how children are treated and how the next generation propagates in the society space.
But if they're different... well, my perception is that by "marriage" you mean something permanent, and by "civil union" you mean something at least potentially temporary. When we got married, "temporary" wasn't an option. We wanted to make something permanent, something we weren't going to back out of. That was our intention then, and it's our intention now. Why? Well, maybe I could put it this way. When you find an amazing place with really inexpensive rent, how long of a lease do you want to sign?
> We wanted to make something permanent, something we weren't going to back out of.
Couldn't the same statement be made without signing a piece of paper? Isn't mutual love, understanding, affection, protection between each other enough to make this statement?
What are we afraid of? That without marriage maybe one day some of this love, affection and protection will go away? But if it's really strong, aren't we going to find again mutual understanding with our partner and fix it anyways, with or without a marriage? And if that piece of paper is really the only thing holding two people together, shouldn't they re-consider that maybe they are not meant for each other and there is another person out there who is waiting for them?
> When you find an amazing place with really inexpensive rent, how long of a lease do you want to sign?
If I told you that this place could be yours forever even without signing a lease, you could just move in and enjoy it for the rest of your life for how long as you wanted, why would you sign the lease anyways?
It seems that marriage is a crazy idea to you. Your "modern" ideas seem crazy to me. To each his own.
People who choose to have no children - are eliminated by natural selection (alongside with their choice of avoiding marriage).
You are a blind man asking us what is the earth.
We cannot answer.
Relationships will be interesting once aging is no longer a concern. I suspect it will be common for most marriages to have a natural duration that's planned for up front.
If people live longer with less physical aging then I'm even less interested in repeating tedious 20s-style hookups and first-dates/first-year-of-dating experiences in the future.
It has a good side effect of giving otherwise ineligible bachelors the ability to form families and thus do something other than die in wars and commit crime, but I don't think this drives individuals to marriage.
In other words, "you" becomes plural. One spouse isn't right unless both are. One spouse isn't happy unless both are.
To the extent that that's not happening, it's an urgency for each spouse to iterate, check in, and innovate until both are right and happy. Even if that's impossible (say, chronic illness) then at least it's a loving team fighting for things that are worth it.
It's perfectly possible for one spouse to love their spouse but not themselves, or to be right when the other isn't, or one to be happy when the other isn't. It's understandable to want to help your spouse to become right or happy or whatever, but a saying like the above is one of those memes that people repeat without fully thinking through what it actually means. And what it means is terrible.
That may make it clearer.
Nobody is ever right all the time, not even my wife.
Pointing that out may not cause immediate happiness, but I think an honest relationship is worth it.
To flesh this point out beyond just being agreeable, you can both do a cost-benefit analysis on whether something is worth arguing about. A lot of the time you or your partner are just nitpicking because of some fucked up power dynamics going on at work, with friends or some other external factor. Your boss being a dick is probably the reason the bathroom being messy is such a big deal and you want to vent about it. You both need to be reasonable, introspective and effective at communicating.
...but that shit flies out the door when 1.) either of you are hungry 2.) you have kids and they're hungry/crying/fighting. Always plan your meals.
A healthy marriage is more than the sum of its parts. Part of the point of a marriage is commitment even when you cannot offer as much back, whether due to personal foible or catastrophe. Or even when the spouse gets all those promotions and could conceivably "upgrade".
People like to forget that the perceived value of these pros/cons brought to the table varies from person to person.
The perception in parent is not good in long term. If you feel the need to agree, basically because you perceive partner to 'do the big important thing' while you perceive yourself to do 'just a small less important things' then agreements might be pleasant for partner for a while, but it will cost. It will be hit for your self regard, ressentement and unappreciation will build up over time and that will affect everything. Even worst if partner believes so.
Real life is not romantic familly movie. It just does not work in such simplistic idyllic way.
Definitely not when motivation for roles split is the wish that partner agrees with you more often - due to partner perceiving herself as giving less. That is parents iterpretation, not mine.
I want to add that, at least in my opinion, managing a home is no less important than providing the means to do so if both partners are gratified by the resulting homelife.
I dunno. Guys who work long hours and are never home tend to talk about gratifying home life waaay more often then women who stay at home while children were small.
You don't hear such romantic odes on it even from stay at home moms who actually found a way to be content. And when you mention negatives of that lifestyle, they don't get offended about hearing them like workoholic dudes apparently get offended (at least rush to downvote).
What about a third possibility: that they already had parity beforehand about many issues important to them? Most wisdom about successful marriages I've heard is that you should marry someone whose values are aligned with your own.
This depends on how you define "personality" and "values". Because for example, according to psychological research, personality traits (as defined by the Big 5 model of personality) are strongly correlated with things such as political beliefs (which could be argued is a subset of a person's values at least), and are largely stable over time. So it wouldn't be too much of a stretch to suggest that the more similar the personalities between a couple, the higher the probability of them also having a large set of overlapping "values", however you choose to define them.
Not every point of disagreement is important: not every value has relevance to a family and not every value one holds is equally difficult to compromise. It's more important to agree on things like finances, children, moral/ethical standpoints, etc... than on politics, music, or hobbies and interests.
The book says the same thing.
Agreeableness is only 42% heritable (the least of the Big 5), and the relative impact of the genetic component decreases if you make a deliberate effort to change your agreeableness, or are incentivized to do so by your environment.
Probably more likely to reach an agreement when their own disagreement is on the line.
If a client is paying you $400/hour to disagree with the other side, then why not....
I think you are confusing lawyers, etc., with the litigants and other disputants whose conflicts provide them jobs. While hardball is sometimes necessary, understanding other people's interests and finding common ground is central to lawyers’ ability to achieve best resolution for their clients.
About the GP comment, litigators are masterful in conducting problem dissection in a calm manner. It's very easy for us to communicate. The only difficult part, and I think this is universal, is that kids + no sleep = craziness. You can throw the stats out the windows if you have very young children.
Even when we go to school meetings with other parents yelling and screaming, we both found ourselves being on side of calm and to the point. Lawyers that like to argue in a public forum and use big words (as I've been told), are typically law students, and not lawyers :)
Birth order. (i can't for the life of me find the source).
Birth order can be huge in predicting agreeableness. The "get along" factor.
First born. Middle. Baby. Only. Powerful dynamics
> Both Matalin and Carville have gone on record saying that they do not talk politics at home. The best example of contention between the two, aside from appearances on talk shows, is the 1993 movie The War Room. In the 1992 political campaign, Matalin and Carville were staffing opposing campaigns. Matalin wrote the best-selling book All's Fair: Love, War and Running for President with Carville and co-author Peter Knobler.
But even in a social sitch, and your SO is making a point you completely disagree with... A normal couple sure, nothing on the table reputation wise, so no biggie, but these two, both are quite stubborn about their respective positions.
Props to them though.
The same folks show divorce rate by age: https://flowingdata.com/2016/03/30/divorce-rates-for-differe...
Uh, I'd say it almost certainly does significantly change their chance of divorce. If you go from having a steady, high income to variable work with high uncertainty around your next paycheck of course it will put more stress on the marriage and substantially increase the risk of divorce.
To be sure, it could very well be that they had some "come to Jesus" moment and decided that's what they really wanted to do in life, and it increased their general happiness and willingness to put effort into all their other relationships. But that, I would think, is the exception, not the rule.
Edit: Though it might be correct to say that the job-change is not a causal driver of the divorce, but merely affected by the real cause.
And even this would make them a non-central example of physicians (and bartenders). Most doctors are heavily committed after 10+ years of education; many bartenders are not "living their dream" and expect to move on. Someone who willingly makes that swap because they've found their true calling is incomparable to the average for both careers.
This is an interesting claim, because I've read various things claiming the opposite (that medicine is a career with a high rate of people leaving it, because the eventual pay and working conditions are simply horrid).
What happens if someone inherits 5+ million and wants a less stressful occupation that's not simply traveling around the world? Well they probably do something well outside of the norm.
Of course, this ignores the fact that sometimes divorce might be a "good" thing where a cash infusion allows someone to leave a bad spouse they were financially dependent on (or, more cynically, "upgrade" their spouse).
If instead, this was a joint decision, I agree with the authors assertions--making a change in career would not impact divorce risk.
If it helps imagine going from "misc. personal appearance workers" to "massage therapists."
Where's your data to break the Null Hypothesis?
Though, if the author of the article wanted to back up their claim, they would attempt to show to what degree drastic changes in career/income had ok divorce rate.
It's obvious that OP (morgante) is posting as conjecture rather than canon.
There are very few jobs where simply "doing your job" gives you this opportunity.
Also, if you're willing to suffer through difficult higher education, imagine the pains you'll endure in relationships to make that work also :)
This reminds me of a quote from Paul Grahams' "How to do What you Love" (http://www.paulgraham.com/love.html): "If you think something's supposed to hurt, you're less likely to notice if you're doing it wrong. That about sums up my experience of graduate school."
I don't know many of my jock friends growing up that had a "girlfriend" in an MMO, as an example.
You're right to distinguish shyness from extroversion; as someone who became less shy without becoming any less introverted, it's not a clear association.
Even if their examples are ill chosen I think the point stands if you take two jobs with similar income and a big difference in divorce rate.
is that becoming a trend now?
Infidelity and money issues are reasons for divorce in the same way that clouds are the reason it rains.
I feel a more valuable explanation would go deeper - into the underlying system that creates the result. In the case of rain, we call it the weather cycle.
With today's headline driven media, it's especially important to guard yourself against correlational relationships being implied as causative. It's not about saying whether something is true or false, it's about being skeptical and using the correlation as a starting point for further investigation.
Speaking (very) roughly, the fact that they are autoregressive constrains how 'kinky' the shapes can be. Visually speaking, the time series will have a small number of inflection points and will appear interpolated between these points.
This greatly reduces the search space: you just need to line up a couple of kinks in a space of ten samples, or match two smooth and vaguely line-shaped objects, rather than find a convincing relationship for 100s of observations not tied together in time.
Correlation CAN Imply Causation! | Statistics Misconceptions
My height has increased over the last century.
How many things on that first list are caused by my increasing height? How many caused my increasing height?
- Calories available
- Vaccination rates
- Access to neo-natal care
- Knowledge about fetus and infant development
Correlation is insufficient to prove causation but in many cases it's a great hint.
I'm gonna need a new wardrobe...
You've confused an individual trend with a trend of the aggregate maximum value.
A couple of those may have a minor influence on the limit of my height, but increasing those factors has no effect on my height.
Or how about my age?
And don't forget other highly correlated values, like the number of movies or books published, Chinese population, cumulative deaths in war, and number of artificial satellites. There's a correlation of my age (and height) with each of those.
Just two temporal trends that move in the same direction.
No causation, though.
Quite a few of the correlations between random datasets linked by a few posters below, for example, may be explainable by second-order effects.
Out of the sea of correlations, we find a few drops of causation by analysis and experiment.
Most criminals have been to school.
Most criminals have worn sneakers.
Should we conclude that milk, school and sneakers are causal factors in crime? Should we eliminate these 3 things from society?
Unless you are using a different definition of "correlated" than I expect.
Very good points and I agree with all.
Regarding recreation - I do very well and that conversation can still pop up. My wife doesn't have any hobbies and I have quite a few. I recently got into kayaking so there's a decent upfront cost. She'll make remarks like we need to cut back on spending or you're spending too much, how much was that, etc.
I just tell her - I could cut back on hobbies and spending but that would require me to cut back on work or abandon one of my companies. Then she gets quiet because she knows what that means. :) I also worked the health benefit angle which is always good with wives. She knows I'm going to spend however I want anyway but I try to get her to understand my reasoning and what the benefits are vs the cost.
It's important to enjoy the fruits of your labor and have fun, it's important to have hobbies, and it's important to get exercise.
Certainly you shouldn't spend wrecklessly like some people (take out a HELOC and buy crazy things like dune buggies like so many did in Vegas prior to the collapse), but every couple should save a set percentage (ideally 10%+) and have a discretionary budget. That way you don't get all the passive aggressive remarks and arguments when one of you spends money on themselves. It's already been decided.
Happily married to another engineer for 15 years. Now engineers also like to argue, so put two of them in the same household and see what happens. We do argue about finances, but it's me not wanting to spend money.
IMO, engineers less likely to do things the average couple might do, such as moving in together after a month, planning marriage six months in, and having a baby one year in, they're more likely to be patient and make more careful choices.
Obvious it's not as simple as comparing the divorce rate of love vs arranged marriages, cultural factors play a huge part but from what I've seen in India the fact that they're committed to making it work seems to make for happy couples.
By contrast, if your relationship is based on just about anything else, whatever those other things are are not as likely to change and so the basis of the relationship doesn't change either.
While lack of money making problems worse is certainly an issue I wonder what (if anything) this says about how people choose partners in addition to how things work out.
I can say that in my 20+ years in engineering, none of my colleagues are divorced. All the typical infidelity gossip is from the other side of the business; purchasing, program management, etc.
Might have been better just to put this in a list.
As such, the x-axis is a metric about the population, not the individual. I happen to use them a fair bit as I find them easier to intuit density from than the alternative, which is to plot on a single line with transparency.
Of course it does. Just try it.
Long deployments / remote spousing also leave room for other arrangements. As long as the checks come in, why not remain married in name only?
"Staying married in name only" means anyone under the UCMJ can't have sex _ever_ if its a marriage in name only.
Yeah. Totally a reason to stay married in name only.
It started out voluntary enough but the lack of a sex life led to that sort of problem.
ETA: It's also illegal even if you are single but sleep with somebody who's married (whether the married person is military or not).
Given they'll be gone a long time and the increased chances they'll come back missing parts or a Different Person (like Frodo after that little Ring adventure).
I'm in the It's-Not-For-Everybody category.
A single earning bartender with an unemployed spouse should have like a 99% divorce rate, according to this chart.
Anecdotally..... I could see that.
Similarly, I'm sure there are many poor people longing for divorce, but they can't afford it.
That's only true if they also have a zero percent chance of getting married.
Getting married will still increase the risk of divorce, because it bumps the odds of getting married up to 100%, but two dating unmarried people have, in general, a nonzero risk of getting divorced.