You know a sentence I never thought I’d say?
Thank you, David Beckham, for those words of truth and wisdom.
Ol’ Becks has been somewhat dragged through the media this week (Ooof. What must THAT be like?!) for admitting that marriage is hard work. And if you’re to believe said media, his wife isn’t too happy about it either.
“I think marriage, marriage is always about hard work,” he said to Lisa Wilkinson on the Sunday Project. “To have been married for the amount of time that we have, it’s always hard work, everybody knows that, but you make it work, you make difficult situations like travelling away, being away from each other, you make it work.”
Apparently this has sent Posh into fits of rage, blah blah blah ‘sources say’ blah blah ‘divorce is imminent’ etc.
Firstly: bullshit. If the media says anything about ‘a close friend has admitted…’ then we can guarantee the story is about as reliable as Samantha Markle.
Secondly: OF COURSE their marriage is hard work. They’ve been married for nineteen years, which is about 18.5 years longer than any of us expected (I mean, do you remember their wedding? His & Hers thrones and matching purple outfits does not often longevity make). I think we can also assume that neither of them are low-maintenance kind of spouses, given that Becks was recently sent into a Sydney cafe to fetch a SINGLE, PEELED CARROT for his wife’s lunch. Really. That happened. Last night I asked Scott to get me some toilet paper (while sitting waiting on the toilet, trapped, with not a square to spare) and it took him 5 minutes and one lecture about “checking before you sit down” to carry that task out!
So how come, when Becks states the bleeding obvious in an interview that marriage takes work, everyone assumes it’s the birth place of their future divorce?
If your long term marriage/relationship isn’t ‘work’ then I salute you. If you have found someone that makes everything easier all the time then you, my friend, are in possession of an actual albino unicorn, a.k.a strap that s**t down yesterday. But I suspect that all marriages worth fighting for, take a whole lot of work.
Why does admitting uncertainty in a relationship make everyone nervous? Will some of you read this and think that, because I’m admitting this, my relationship is doomed? The thing is, I feel an overwhelming compulsion to admit instability in my relationship. To claim anything else would be untrue and it also gives me a nice buffer zone for if/when things go to shit.
A few years ago, my husband and I were done. We called it quits on 12 tumultuous years and went our separate ways. We were broken and I thought completely unfixable. Then after a year apart we decided to work on our relationship and managed to put the pieces back together. It’s not perfect, but it’s getting there; ultimately we are stronger together, and making something strong usually takes, say it with me, oh yeah you know what’s coming: Hard. Work.
Marriage/long term relationships are fucking hard work!
It is hinted at, written about, studied and mumbled but I don’t think enough married people are saying to other married people: “My relationship can be a clusterfuck of disappointment, frustration and finger pointing.”
Which reminds me. Hey, you guys: Sometimes my realtionship is a clusterfuck of disappointment, frustration and finger pointing.
There are thousands upon thousands of experts giving us unsolicited advice on how to spice up our unions, but no one mentions what to do when you’re in an epic stand-off with your other half over whose turn it is to clean up the dog’s spew.
You both declare – so the aforementioned spew sits for days, congealing on the bathroom floor into a circle of stiffened yellow stomach lining.
That is the shit that tests marriages more than anything. At least it is in my house, the battle over whose turn is it to do the crappy menial every day tasks. Add some kids, and your life becomes about existing not living – you just “get through” days rather than experience them.
I share this with you because I want you to know that my marriage can be hard work. I feel that if more of us admitted that to each other, there’d be less pressure to be in a perfect relationship to begin with. We’d stop holding each other to unrealistic standards. Maybe you aren’t going on romantic date nights like so many therapists recommend, but maybe you got through the day without flipping the love of your life your middle finger while silently mouthing “go fuck yourself sideways” and you’re both laying silently on the couch together holding hands.
My relationship can also be the bedrock upon which I build my emotional foundations. I love him, he loves me, we love our kids and sometimes that breaks my balls and sometimes it makes my heart burst with joy.
It’s not always bad, but it can be. And that’s all I really wanted to say. I reckon Becks did Vicky a favour, I think he was trying to soften everyones expectations of them – it made me look at him and them in a whole new light. Instead of scheduling an emergency Vogue cover shoot to dispel divorce rumours, I reckon they should just tell the truth. ‘Hey, we’re a couple with four kids, busy lives, a billion dollar empire and unprecedented media attention trying to get through like anyone else…’ Ok, so they’re not entirely relatable, but you get it; admit your flaws and people will be far more forgiving and maybe less interested when shit blows up.
I asked my husband what he would say if Wilko were to ask him that same question.
Scotty: “Yes our marriage is hard word sometimes, however hard work usually leads to something great. Hard work can be viewed as something negative I suppose, if there’s no end goal. But my end goal is a more harmonious existence with my family, so I am happy to put it in.”
What a guy! I almost forgive him for leaving me hanging like a naughty toddler who’d shat their pants on the toot last night.
Have a great week,
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