Last night I watched the first two episodes of “Marry, at first sight” (although in Swedish it’s something different…). It was in Swedish with Swedish subtitles, so i would have to occasionally ask what certain words were, and sometimes my brain was so flummoxed by this language I do not have a great hold on, and the speed it was going by, I just guessed a lot of it. But, I understood the gist.
The premise of the show was, six people were matched up by psychologists and behavioural scientists and then married without meeting each other. They were then filmed for the first month of their marriage, after which one couple divorced and the other two couples continued. It was interesting watching and hearing these smart scientists talk about the different reasons why Sweden has a large singles culture. Why some are too busy, or some are looking forward to the perfect person who doesn’t exist. All participants were over 30, all had very specific lives that revolved around very specific things, and it was fascinating to see how the “judges” decided to put the three couples together. And as the bride walked up the aisle it dawned on the viewer…. the families hadn’t met either. It was all going on face value. The “and now you may kiss the bride” and the entire ethos of the first night of marriage was a little strange because they were completely strangers thrown into a big party and expected to then become one. In philosophy and life, but also in family and friendship.
One couple was incredibly awkward. But that may have been that both are awkward people. Whereas one of the grooms started crying at the beauty of his bride and acted as if they had known each other for years.
Weddings are like that tho, even when you HAVE known each other for a while, and HAVE chosen to be together forever. Some people are awkward in front of others, and other people are very comfortable. Marriage between two choosers seems quite a hard thing by itself. But these arranged marriages would make or break on the simple idea of commitment. Not the emotions you feel towards the person. Not the pleasure you derive from the person, but, commitment to the other persons good. and fighting for that, even through the uncomfy times. Which, for the three couples could be a constant battle at first.
If we believe that everyone is valuable, that everyone can grow, and that good communication can grow good relationships, a social experiment like that, with proper support from our communities, could show an amazing side to the human experience.
It is a security to know that someone will never give up on you. That someone will always believe in you.
I was just telling someone the other day. My father convinced me from very early on that he loved me and wanted the best for me and that he personally thought I was great. He has said many times he is proud of me and every time he says it, I feel like I have a cape. A superhero for sure.
I know that every time I go home to my parents that I will be safe and cared for.
And until I make my own family that is the umbrella I relationally find myself in. (As I haven’t lived with them for ten years)
But as humans make their own families, they get to extend that same security to one another. Marriages, Children, In-laws. We commit because we commit. Even when Little Jeremy nearly died two times a month for a couple of years. Even when little Jeremy is frustratingly dimwitted and seems not to learn. Even when Little Jeremy decides he wants to live in a different country for a long time. We are committed to being committed because in that commitment is safety, security and the epitome of love. For the other. To become one as if we were they. To become one as if we feel what they feel. We hope what they hope.
I like people. and I like when people like people.
This has been a beautiful wee of extroverted hang outs, and my heart is full and happy.