This week, my parents crossed another marital threshold when they celebrated their 24th wedding anniversary. It is cause for celebration, particularly as we’ve witnessed the bliss of other couples melt into territorial wars over properties and children. Their union’s survival is the provincial margin-of-error in statistics that are daunting for those considering that traipse down the aisle.
The Forest Institute of Professional Psychology found that 50 percent of first marriages, 67 percent of second marriages and 74 percent of third marriages end in divorce. These numbers evoke pause in the most lovestruck among us. So, my parents’ milestone and that of the hundreds of couples that battle the storms and emerge victorious, deserves to be commended. Through the rockiest times and the turmoil, they’ve managed to keep love at the forefront of their union when there was nothing else keeping them from signing the divorce papers.
But for millennials, who are more career-oriented than our generational ancestors, above that ideological concept of unconditional love is the important question of how to balance career ambition with the need to raise family. What I admire most about my parents’ marriage has been their unique ability to balance career decisions and family health. I have young parents (mom is 43, dad is 52), so unlike Governor Mitt Romney who was able to retire his wife before she began a career trajectory, my middle-class folks weren’t afforded those opportunities. Both of them had to enter the workforce to provide for us.