It’s official. Chris Pratt and Anna Faris have split after eight years of marriage. Okay, really? Why should you care? It’s not like you know them. Maybe it’s because if two attractive, talented and successful people can’t make a go of marriage, what chance do you have?
The answer is “probably a better chance than they did”. What? How can that be?
The truth is that the “glamorous life” of Hollywood stars is a lot of hard work. They have all the normal struggles of life and they have to stay fit and attractive despite long hours on set and/or away from home on location.
Most of the time, I wouldn’t give much thought to the marital success or failure of a Hollywood power couple. Certainly not more than I give to any couple whose marriage is struggling. So, what’s different about them. I don’t watch Mom and, while I enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy, I was not a fan of Parks and Rec.
What got to me is not just that they seem to be very nice people with a four-year old son. What got to me was the official statement. “We tried hard for a really long time, and we’re really disappointed….We still have love for each other, will always cherish our time together and continue to have the deepest respect for one another.”
But love and respect are the cornerstones of a good marriage. I don’t know what they tried or that they weren’t sincere in their efforts but something obviously didn’t work. I mean, isn’t love supposed to “conquer all”?
Well, we forget that love is a verb; it’s action that often falls by the wayside when other things get priority.
It’s easy to sustain in the early, heady days of a relationship. Our bodies are addicted to that neurochemical high. The challenge is what we do when that high inevitably fades and other things, like life, command our time and attention. Add in the career uncertainty and odd working conditions actors face and you can understand the shifting rivalries for time and attention.
The eight-year mark of the marriage and the age of their son are also revealing in the constant competition for energy and focus. The simple truth is that children are time and attention hogs, especially in the first three years.
What is well-known by experts, but comes as a surprise to most couples, is that marital satisfaction takes a hit when children appear. If you aren’t properly prepared for this, your marriage becomes vulnerable. Unfortunately, you won’t find a chapter on the Care and Feeding of Your Marriage in any baby book. If there were, the spike in divorce that occurs between years 5 and 8 might not happen.
Just because this is normal doesn’t mean it’s inevitable. If love and respect are still present, there is still hope. But you have to make it a priority. Nothing thrives on neglect and your marriage is no different. Learning how to keep your relationship alive and thriving through the years is possible. And, after all, isn’t that what you want?
TIME TO REFLECT:
- What are some of the time demands you struggle with in your relationship?
- What gets in the way of actively showing love to your partner?
- What is the biggest challenge in your marriage right now?
Feel free to share your reflections with me! I really want to hear from you.