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Essays by KT

Marriage Reflection

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TY 224

7 October 2008

Marriage is a sacrament.  It is the uniting of one man and one woman.  The ceremony contains public vows to hold the couple accountable not only in the eyes of each other but also in the eyes of the Church.  This sacrament is established by God; it is a way in which God gives the couple grace.  Within the sacrament of marriage, God sanctifies the couple; he brings the couple closer to him and to each other.

The purpose of marriage is procreation and unity.  Within the marriage, the couple should strive to be closer to God.  In doing this the couple will also grow closer to each other.  Marriage requires the giving of each other to the other freely, fully, and faithfully.

In light of the interviews and the information I learned in class, the most important and basic expectation I have for our relationship in marriage remains the same: to fulfill God’s purpose for us in our marriage, both as individuals and as a couple.  My dream in marriage is that our love for one another will reflect the love which Christ has for his Church: respectful, unconditional, and self-sacrificing.

The couple that I interviewed was my parents.  I found that a lot of their expectations for and reservations about marriage when they first got married are very similar to what my expectations and reservations are now.  They both did not have many expectations.  They are main expectation was that they would remain friends; they did not expect a lot to change.  Because they were not sure what to expect in marriage their expectations have not changed much since then.

I, too, am not sure what to expect in marriage.  I am sure it will be a learning experience; it will be something new for both of us and therefore it will be something exciting yet scary.  Because it will be something different for the two of us, we will, together, experience new things.  Knowing that marriage will be something new for both of us is comforting.  We will be able to overcome our fears and obstacles together.  Through this we will also be able to strengthen our relationship even more.

To me, my expectations and reservations continue to seem realistic in light of what I have learned through the interview and in class.  They are quite optimistic but I do not believe them to be unrealistic.  I understand that my future spouse will not always be “Prince Charming”, but our fidelity and commitment toward each other will help in the growth of our love for each other.

I intend to marry a Godly gentleman with a strong Catholic faith.  Marrying someone who is prayerful and supportive of me is very important.  Because of our Catholic faith, we will have similar beliefs.  I expect that we will have some similar interests; I also expect there to be some differences in what we like to do.

These similarities as well as these differences will bring us closer.  This will also help us to build a stronger relationship.  Because of our similarities, we will be able to do things together that we both enjoy.  Because of our differences, we will not feel as though we have to always be doing something together.

Some of these differences may result in some disagreements but my hope is that we will not let that or anything else conquer our love for each other, but rather make us stronger, both as individuals and as a couple.  My parents have very similar, yet very different, beliefs and interests.  They do not always agree with each other, but they always maintain a level of respect for each other.

            I also do not believe that my expectations for my future husband’s appearance are unrealistic.  I expect that he will be attractive on the inside: friendly, funny and faithful.  I believe that, due to his inward attractiveness, he will be attractive to me on the outside as well.  I expect that my future husband and I will become good friends before we think about dating and marriage.

            I think there are a couple reasons why I expect to maintain a good friendship with my future spouse before we get married.  One reason is because that is what my parents did.  They were merely best friends for a long time.  It was not until much later in their friendship that they even thought about dating.  Another reason why I expect to be good friends before even thinking about dating is because I believe that is the best way to get to know someone.  Also, if we cannot maintain a friendship, we will not be able to maintain a happy marriage.

I expect that my future husband and I will remain best friends: beginning prior to marriage and lasting throughout our marriage.  I think I get this expectation from my parents’ relationship with each other.  They were best friend before they even began dating, and they have remained best friends ever since.

Since procreation is one of the purposes of marriage, I expect that my future husband will be good with kids.  I expect we will create a stable home environment for our children.  I hope my future husband will be open to the possibility of adopting.  I hope he will be willing to help me create an environment in which everyone feels welcome in our home.

I expect that my husband and I will be involved very much in the Church and bring out children up in that environment.  I hope he will be open to the possibility of missionary work.  I hope, also, to go on many family trips and to expose our children to a variety of different places and cultures.

I expect that my future husband will get along with my friends and family and that I will get along with his.  I expect that we will go to family reunions and having our children meet their relatives.  I know we will have some different friends, but some of our friends will be the same.  Because of this, I expect that there will be times when we can go out with our friends and times when I can go out with my friends and he can go out with his.

I hope to marry a man who is not afraid to let me know, in a respectful way, when I am wrong, who is also humble enough to admit when he is wrong.  I expect that he will be forgiving and also willing to ask for forgiveness.  I also expect that he will be mostly open with his feelings and very good at listening.  I understand that these are optimistic expectations, and they might not be present all the time, but I expect that it will be the norm.  I also hope that I will become more like this ideal.

I expect to marry someone who will help me to grow in my faith.  I also expect to marry someone who is uplifting and supportive, someone who does not put me down but rather lifts me up.  I want to marry someone with a great sense humor, someone who appears confident in himself but is not afraid to admit his insufficiencies.  I look forward to laughing and crying together, being able to help and be helped.

The thing I find the most attractive about marriage is the idea of having a steady best friend: someone who can share with me in knowing my ultimate best friend, Jesus.  I love the idea of having someone to constantly keep me accountable and pray with me and for me.  Being with someone who will bring me closer to God and whom I can bring closer to God is something I look forward to.  I also look forward to knowing someone else who can help me to grow and make me a stronger person.

I also like the idea of being able to discuss freely with my future husband, our hopes, dreams, and fears.  I love the idea of being able to grow together and strengthen our relationship with each other as well as with God. 

As well as there being things I find attractive about marriage, there are also some reservations I have about marriage.  Though I really look forward to commitment, it is also something I am a little scared of.  Entering into a lifelong commitment with someone seems to be both an exciting and scary thing to everyone.  My hope is that my future husband and I will have similar fears about marriage and that we will be able to overcome them together.  This will help us to strengthen our relationship.

I am afraid my husband and my relationship will become less of a friend relationship and more of a family relationship.  This is very similar to what my parents’ main reservation was about marriage.  Because they were such good friends, they were a little scared of how their relationship would change once they got married.  They were concerned that they would be more like the “traditional” married couple and less like the friends they had been for most of their life.

My biggest fear about marriage is that I will place my husband before God in my life, which is definitely not a positive thing.  This is what happened in the third chapter of Genesis.  Adam took the apple from Eve and ate it, despite what God had told him.  In doing this, Adam placed Eve before God; Adam idolized Eve.

I also fear that I will not be a good mother or a good wife.  One thing my parents said they think more about now than they did when they were first married is the direction in which their children are going.  I am afraid that I will not be able to bring my children up in the right way.

Another thing my parents said they think more about now than they did when they were first married is their health.  I expect to marry someone who cares for and takes care of his health so we can live a healthy life together.  I look forward to exercising and playing sports with him.  One thing I learned from my parents when I interviewed them is that it takes a lot of teamwork.  I learned also that marriage requires setting many goals. 

Overall, I really look forward to marriage if that is the vocation God is calling me to.  If God is calling me to marriage, I believe he will help me to overcome those fears.  Before I even begin to date someone, I first need to strengthen my relationship with God, my very best friend.  In doing this, hopefully my fears will become less present.

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