M: I do. Two little words. Three letters. Too short but too big in impact. Two lives change when those two words are uttered. And it’s not just for a day, it is for a lifetime (hopefully). Sounds scary. Sometimes, you have to ask yourself, do I? The responsibilities seemed so big and yet you feel anything is possible. Many have said “in case of doubt, don’t.” I think everyone has their share of doubts before making a decision or a commitment like marriage — or buying a house or even a car. Or nowadays, whether to go out or just stay home for fear of getting infected.
DJ: Speaking of saying “I do,” I’ve heard quite a number of epic-horror marriage stories from some friends. But that’s not the reason really I am still single. It’s still a matter of looking at either the half-full or empty side of things. It is a choice. There is hardly a perfect choice, too. We learned more of this when the pandemic broke. Staying at home or going out both have pros and cons. But we have to decide anyway to move our lives forward. Whatever that decision is. Marriage, I believe, is no different. There is an advantage to being single and a disadvantage too. But who has it all figured out? In my opinion, it boils down to our purpose, how the decision is aligned to our beliefs, our passion and what we intend to do given such a choice. There’s conflict inside us if there’s any misalignment. There is a battle. And from there, unhappiness too.
M: Commitment is not just in relationships but in the way we do things. In contracts, when there is a meeting of the minds and consent is freely given, it is binding and enforceable. In marriage, a commitment is not just a leap of faith but a hope for love to continue whether it is for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health. With the health scare, many have learned to value more the essentials and have learned to let go of their preferences. Many have also been forced to look deep into themselves, their relationships and how to manage expectations. We cannot just do the things that we used to do. Fighting couples, for example, are forced to stay home and work it out because it is risky to go out! These days, everything is a lesson on forbearance, patience and trust.
DJ: Love is a decision one makes every day. Committing to something and to someone can’t be anchored just with feelings. As we know, emotions are fleeting. We can’t also just go with what we think we should Covid-19 further underscored how uncertain things can be. For any important decisions, whether it’s marriage or buying that seaside property in Siargao, it helps to balance both the mind and the heart. It’s from a space where logic is formed and it feels like the right thing to do. Then take it from there. Complex right? That’s what introspection is for. And that’s also why it’s never advisable to make a move when we’re in an emotional or mental extreme.
M: Yes. Always pay attention to the way you’re feeling and recognize how those emotions may distort your thinking and influence your behavior. A lot of marriages are either strengthened or broken because of these. Decisions as important as raising a child too. Or even buying that luxurious car.
DJ: We all have days when we look back at some of the terrible decisions we’ve made and wondered, “What was I thinking?” Well, chances are, we weren’t really thinking. It’s likely that we’re just acting on emotion. Not logic. We’ve heard about counting from one to 10 before sending a very intense email response. A number of us may have also dated an attractive person who treated us horribly. Why? I’ve read somewhere that when emotions are running high, logic is low. This leads to irrational decisions. Friends say that’s the reason casinos use bright lights and loud noises. They want us to get excited. The more excited people feel, the more likely they’ll spend large amounts of money. Going through the pandemic for almost a year now and witnessing all the meltdowns and dramas on social media from people we thought who could never say such things should have taught us more about the need to balance logic and emotional activity. Yup. Before we click on anything.