Posted 7/29/14 (Tue)
For as long as I can remember, I have heard that a husband and wife should be a team.
You learn to grow together and weather storms by depending on one another.
This is how a marriage matures. You learn what is important and what isn’t.
He learns that some nights it’s better to throw everyone in the car and go out to eat rather than ask, “What’s for dinner honey?”
She learns to laugh instead of banging her head on a wall when he calls and says “I accidently bought a gun today.”
This comes from being the only two people in that boat figuring out how to keep it afloat through any storm.
So you can imagine my surprise when I come across an article in a prominent paper about co-housing.
Two couples, one mortgage, shared future children.
My first thought was is this yet another evolution of society’s version of marriage.
My second thought was these people need some Jesus.
The couple interviewed state that their history of sharing dorms and houses with roommates made the idea of just the two of them a lonely one.
They worried about not having a referee when there was a disagreement. Who would do all the chores?
They were concerned about not having the financial freedom of their single life any longer.
The idea of not having a support team was mind boggling.
When they decided to get married they discussed this at length with others and found a couple with similar fears.
Can you see where this is leading?
They joined forces.
Four people, four incomes allowed them to get a decent home and renovate so they have two master bedrooms and bath areas but the rest of the house is shared.
They divvy chores.
They each have a set amount of money they contribute to the shared resource account each month for bills.
They counsel each other when there is a disagreement.
One man was quoted talking about how much he appreciated having another man to bounce his feelings and frustrations off.
This is the part where I decided to just disengage.
I didn’t want to read any more.
My idea of traditional marriage isn’t popular to talk about today.
Four people a marriage does not make.
I realized that these couples are living in and acting out of fear.
There is a fear of conflict. A husband and wife should disagree and have to work through it alone, this is how you learn to compromise and grow.
There is a fear of struggle. You will struggle with money because this is where you learn the value of it. This is how you learn what not to do.
There is a fear of loneliness. The support team is your spouse. You have to be each other’s buoy in the storm.
There is a fear of work. Chores? Chances are if the house hasn’t burned down and you have clean underwear, you will figure that out too.
There is a fear of accepting blame. You learn early on that the less people you invite into your problems, the easier it is to talk with your spouse about. At some time in your marriage, you will have to accept blame.
There is a fear of independence. Turns out a lot of people do not like being alone. Being alone or doing something by yourself strengths you and allows you to bring that strength to your marriage.
Consider all the military spouses out there who spend months separated due to work duty. They have to embrace that independence and conquer being alone while still being a couple.
There is a fear of failure. Failing is hard. Period. However failure is a stepping stone. How will you know if something will work unless you try?
How many times have you heard a child say, “But what if I don’t make the team?” Adults realize that without trying, you can never succeed thusly failure is a potential you have to consider.
There is a fear of hardship. Money stashed away just in case is a comforting thought.
Reality is that at some point in your marriage someone is going to take a second job washing dishes to make sure the baby has diapers. You grow from these times.
There is a fear of intimacy. Really knowing your spouse takes time and can be the biggest blessing. However you get there through the journey. It takes time.
I have to wonder how their co-housing is going to end up.