Growing old and wanting to kill each other

When people talk about marriage, it’s usually in a very positive or a negative light. For those who are uninitiated and ignorant and young, they think it’ll be happily ever after (certainly helped by the Disney fairy tales that overrun the minds of young children), riding off into the sunset on a horse that doesn’t smell. For those who have either experienced it themselves or through the dismal relationships of their parents, they avoid it, have heart palpitations over it, and think all marriages will be doomed. Some will just mask their lack of joys more than others. “All the world’s a stage,” as Shakespeare once wrote.

I tend to think more practically about it now. When you’re married, by default you have someone to do activities with. You don’t have to plan a trip and feel self conscious about traveling alone or get lonely pangs. Your partner will be there with you. My parents’ marriage isn’t necessarily the happiest one, but it makes sense. They take care of each other. My dad does all the things my mom doesn’t like to do, and my mom does most of the things my dad doesn’t like to do or isn’t capable of doing. They once had a fervid, romantic love. That’s pretty much disintegrated now, and now it’s about a stability, regularity, the expected. But there’s an inherent trust that they have in each other after all these years. And then, there are those like Hal & Bee, who just fantasize endlessly about killing each other in multiple ways, whether it’s via stabbing, shooting, or just beating to death.

Maybe I’m naive myself. But I cannot fathom the idea of fantasizing about killing my partner in different ways and actually deriving joy from it. The mere idea doesn’t sound very exciting, and I guess I’ve never had a desire to end anyone’s life, even when extremely angry. If you really hate someone so much that you want to fantasize about killing him, then why don’t you just leave him? Or is it the regularity and stability and the perception of being “status quo” by being married that keeps you together?

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