“I tell you, the more I think, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.” — Vincent Van Gogh
I found this quote recently and have been hanging onto it, almost like fingers clutching a ledge, as the onslaught of stories and information pours on about the demise of our current state of relationships. Last week’s coverage of the historic turn of events where more women (51%) are living without a spouse than with one. Depending on your race the statistics are as low as one in three (Black women) and only as high as 6 out of 10 for Asian women.
That those living in marriage in America is now a minority, isn’t really surprising. It confirms our collective experience of yet another of our institutions no longer able to serve its members. In part this is due to a healthy maturation of all the members. We are more able to choose our lifestyle, and our expectations about our relationships are more demanding. Crisis, opportunity or act of true art, our relationships are in the process of reinvention.
Just as in our work lives, our personal relationships are not all lifetime experiences. As we change and grow, healthy careers keep step. So it is that we demand this of our primary relationships. If the relationship succeeds in teaching us patience, kindness, generosity and the gift of our human heart during its existence, it has succeeded.
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