The competitive marriage: is it necessarily doomed?
Hope all is well with my “readers” tonight. I just got back from a lecture and I’m really exhausted and a little bit saddened, as well. Not about the lecture. Other stuff. But then, I came in and it was quite chilly so I put my cuddly robe on and I sat down and I wondered, “whatever will I write about tonight?” I feel like I’m all divorced out. I feel like I’ve written all there is to write about marriage and divorce. I feel like I need to start a whole new blog. I mean, seriously, what else is there to say that I haven’t already said?
But then I remembered I had read online the other day that my girl, Gwyneth Paltrow, has been out stomping to promote her new cookbook, My Father’s Daughter, and then, it might have been on Popeater, or not, but the writer helpfully divulged that Gwyneth’s husband Chris Martin had attended the event (a private party of some sort) but was rather in a bad, sulky mood. And the insinuation was that if he was sulky at his wife’s event, then he must not be happy for her.
‘Course, the way my brain works, I started to think right away whether there might be some subliminal issues there. Like competition. A lot of couples are competitive with each other. Superstar Angelina Jolie has readily copped to having a competitive rapport with her husband Brad Pitt. I meant boyfriend. Other couples compete. I am sure that Bill and Hillary Clinton compete sometimes. Barack and Michele Obama compete on some levels, I am sure. And countless other couples compete with each other.
Is this necessarily a bad thing? I don’t know….I mean, personally…. I don’t know. I don’t like to feel like I’m competing with anyone, least of all my significant other. I just was never the competitive girl. I like to do my own thing. I never cared enough about what other people were doing to try to compete with them. But I have to say, other people are not like that. Even when you have no interest in them, they want to compete with you. And that is human nature, I guess. I mean, competition is good, right? It makes us better. But….I mean, in a marriage? Is it healthy? Is it a form of utopian idealism to expect that your spouse will not compete with you? Or that you won’t want to compete with your spouse? I guess it depends on the level of it. You know? On the level of the competition. I guess it depends how it manifests too. I mean, is it vicious? How far do the two people go to “win” or to “better” the other person? I think if it is cut throat competitiveness, then that is not healthy. And I can’t even think of a scenario in a marriage where there would be cutthroat competitiveness. I have no idea what that would look like and feel like….but I imagine it must be pretty awful.
Playful competition like seeing who can finish the crossword puzzle or who bakes the better bread or who has the most followers on Facebook that might not be a bad thing. It could be motivating and fun, actually. But other types of competition that gets so intense that you are not happy for each others’ successes and you try to sabotage each other? That is a problem. I think think that means your marriage is doomed.
Is Gwyneth and Chris having a competitive marriage? I don’t know. Don’t know the girl. Just think she’s awesome. And I hope that Popeater writer was just blabbering for the sake of it but that there is nothing behind Mr. Martin’s sulky mood at Gwynnie’s party….
I just wish that all married couples would refuse to compete with each other and be happy for each other and support each other. And I am sure the Paltrow Martins are doing just that…..by the way, did I mention I love Gwyneth Paltrow? Yes, I totally have a little girl crush on her. She’s amazing.
Well, that’s it for now.
Till I return.
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