Men provide less investment in their children when they are no longer in a relationship with the mother

Men provide less investment in their children when they are no longer in a relationship with the mother

Marriage and the discipline of denial

That golden idea of marriage was supported by a clear idea of the nature and purpose of ous English case of Hyde v Hyde and Woodmansee, es Wilde defined marriage as “a union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others, as understood in Christendom.” This was a case about whether polygamy could be recognised.

A union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. Sir James Wilde made it clear that this common law understanding of marriage had its origins in Christianity. Christianity rejected polygamy. It also rejected divorce by the pronouncement of the talaq or the gett or any other means by which men discarded women for whom they no longer had a use.

That teaching about marriage went against the most primal instincts of men. Lifelong fidelity does not come easily, especially to men. Yet it is critical for the wellbeing of women and children that men will commit themselves to the support of their wives and the nurture of their children long after the bloom of youth has faded, long after the first rush of young love has dissipated, through the hard times as well as the good times. This matters still, even though so many mothers are now in employment, at least part-time.

Marriage involves commitment through all the mundane circumstances of life. That commitment anchors the family, gives it the stability that allows all the members of the family to flourish. It is the discipline of denial that offers the security to bring children into the world – and for women in particular to make those sacrifices necessary to nurture the children in their earliest years.

Rejecting the Christian idea of marriage

In the modern era, this Christian understanding of marriage, this notion of “a union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others” as Sir James Wilde defined it, has been comprehensively and completely rejected. These changes are well-known; but it is at least worth reviewing what they mean for modern ily relationships. There has been a huge controversy in recent years about same-sex marriage; but it is important to see that the changes brought about in the nature of marriage long preceded that debate. We had pretty much abandoned the Christian view of marriage as underpinning our national laws, at least a decade earlier.

For life, to the exclusion of all others…

In 1975 in Australia, but a little earlier in other western countries, we abandoned the idea that marriage was a covenant, a union of men and women for life to the exclusion of all others hookupdate.net/es/blackcrush-review/ that would be protected in law. Divorce, until 1975, was a remedy for a wrong. The husband who broke the marriage covenant by adultery, or who deserted his wife, or who treated her cruelly, could be divorced by her and would need to pay spousal maintenance, or alimony, for her as a form of damages for breach of that covenant.

That at least, was the theory. In reality, few men could afford to pay spousal maintenance, particularly if they were also paying maintenance for their children. When one goes from one household to two households, inevitably many costs double while the available income stays the same. Divorce often meant penury for women and children even if the man was utterly at fault for the marriage breakdown.

Nonetheless, the law at least supported the Christian idea of marriage with its remedy of divorce. It also supported it through the criminal law. Adultery was an offence, known, rather obscurely, as the euphemistically named offence of ‘criminal conversation’.

¡Escucha!