“I, ___, take thee, ___, to be my wedded husband/wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith [or] pledge myself to you.”
You recognise this as the standard declared universal wedding oath . Today it has gained flexibility with couples adding and subtracting their own unique language and values. I invite you to focus on the “pledge myself to you”. It is a reference to one of the universally accepted, though not vocalised as it is taken for granted and accepted, underpinnings of marriage, namely commitment.
At that wedding moment , eyes glued on each other, bodies pledged before witnesses, the act of sex finally socially and religiously sanctioned, anticipating later bodily delights/or pain, , you commit to a life together, never really understanding what the meaning of commitment is.
Furthermore despite the absence of the words, you pledge yourself to the accompanying expectation of “monogamy’ and “fidelity.”
Marital commitment is certainly the key force underlying the stability, quality and longevity of romantic relationships. There can be no relationship if only one of you is reaching out, initiating , investing . Commitment implies reciprocity . Lack thereof hurts so bad.
Furthermore commitment is strengthened in the presence of marital satisfaction , the absence of alternative attractions, and steady investments made into the relationship. It is also a consequence of increasing dependence. The more dependent you are on each other, say the academics, the more commitment there is.
I am a great proponent of commitment. It is like a big fluffy blanket you wrap around yourself and within that blanket you are free to be yourself. Free to live your best life with a partner who grasps that commitment means trust, not possessiveness and jealousy.
If that blanket is never allowed to be removed, if that person wants or expects to stay trapped inside there with you -always and forever- the claustrophobia will choke you…into infidelity, long solo cruises on ships and choosing non consensual non monogamy , casual sex and single hood so as to avoid that cloying expectation we imagine commitment means.
Commitment has a competitor : social media . Going online shatters all previous ideas of commitment. I suggest you and your partner define and decide what kinds of commitment you want as for sure, one for both of you will be turning to social media seeking basic needs to be met , the kind of needs commitment feeds. And once this turning away happens, the dependence on the other weakens , resulting in low In real Life commitment . This places the relationship at risk.
Ask how you are (are not) exhibiting Commitment:
* Spend all our free time together
* Forbid contact with ex’s
* Ban chatting with known or unknown people on social media
* Have (want to have ) a lot of sex with each other
* Total accountability for each other’s whereabouts
* Invest all money and time into each other
* Never engage in own individual activities
* Feel like I cant commit to my partner as he/she cheated.
Healthy relationships are dependent on 4 pillars : commitment, trust/honesty, passion , respect. When these are in place, freedom to individuate and be your best possible self, exists. Commitment is not about a joined-at-the hip relationship. It’s a personal pledge one takes to another person/s, without loosing one- self. People who feel personally insecure , anxious or have a strong traditional background in romance and religion, fall foul to this joined-at-the hip dependent relationship. It is set up for personal pain .
Let’s move into the modern domain of intimacy and love. Here are some commitment conundrums for you to ponder:
> What happens when you want a casual relationship and not a committed one.
I believe that there is nothing wrong with wanting casual hook ups/friends with benefits , casual situations, online romance, with or without commitment . I think the traditional notion of “till death do us part” is not relevant here.
I do think it is wrong if you deceive the other into believing you want casual and /or are not committed in the traditional God fearing manner.
Full disclosure is really necessary, as in “I’m not into building serious relationship right now. I respect you “. Allow people them decide if they want to participate in casual sex and what expectations of commitment they have post orgasm .
For more information on commitment , contact me.