About being together

This year lots of my friends are getting married. But I know a few of them that actually ended their engagement. I was talking to my boyfriend about this the other day, and I was trying to understand what drives a person to end such a commitment. To him, the answer is simple, one of the two simply did not want to get married anymore. Either they found out that they did not love the other, or they had so many questions or just stopped loving each other. And then he asked me: “Are you sure that you will *always* be in love with me?”. I replied: “Of course not. The fact that we are in love know does not imply that we will always feel like this”. I thought this was a sad but true truth… And it got me thinking about marriage and long term relationships.

I thought of all the couples I know that are married for decades. Does the fact that they did not get a divorce imply that they have always been in love with each other? Not likely… Every couple I know enough has gone through some rough times. Sometimes they get over it, sometimes they break up. So what is it that determines if two people should be together? What is it that makes some people stay with each other although they have times doubting their love?

The answer could be a million things… and I suspect that if I ask around lots of couples married for 50 years they will all have different answers. Of course I could go on saying that is a matter of trade off, that the more two people are committed, the harder is for them to break up… but this is not a business. And these are hardly measurable things… Instead of trying to find a formula, I started to think on what holds people together through hard times. Maybe this is different for each person, but for me, it’s the memories. They give me hope that things will get better because they have been better before. I like to think why and when we fell in love. I remember the warm feeling, the butterflies in the stomach, the late night conversations… I remember the first time I noticed the things I like most about him. These thoughts make me feel good, and I realize the hard times cannot overcome all the happiness we had and will have. I hope I can always feel like this =)

PS: I wonder how much in love people that have been together for a long time feel about each other… It would be a shame to find out that this feeling goes away.