Love and Marriage
edited: Sunday, April 08, 2001
By Sue Crawford
Posted: Sunday, April 08, 2001
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How I found true love.
Love and marriage is no longer a matter of getting married at an early age and staying married until you die. The world has changed. For better or worse, people's thinking has changed.
At the age of 17 I married the boy my parents CHOSE for me. I didn't have sense enough to realize that I didn't have to marry the guy. This was my parents choice and all I really wanted to do was get out of the house, do all those things I was never allowed to do at home. I thought I was grown and could now do whatever I wanted. Wrong!
To begin with, I didn't love the guy. My parents seemed to think that you could love whomever you wanted to love, but I found that it was impossible. Oh, he wasn't a bad sort of person, on the contrary. He allowed me to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted so long as he could do the same. I lived with him for 14 years. In between, I had one child, miscarried 4, had a nervous breakdown, started smoking and then realized that I was only living for the day when I would die. My reaction was to jump out of the frying pan into the fire.
Along came a man who was exciting, witty, intellegent and good looking. Just what I was looking for. Wrong!
I fell for him blindly, not seeing the other side of his personality. He was the type of man who needed to control everything and everybody around him. He told me how to dress, what to eat, when to eat, what to do and what not to do. Of course, this didn't happen over night. It happened slowly with me trying to change to suit him every time he complained. It didn't work. For years he accused me of messing around. What I didn't realize was that he was messing around. I lived with him for 17 years. I ended up with very low self-esteem and ulcers.
Determined never to marry again, I went about making a life for myself. I worked hard and was happy, but my family thought I needed something more. They encouraged me to date. From the most unlikly source, a newspaper, I met my husband. We talked over the phone for weeks before I agreed to meet him. Of course, I finally did and what a surprise. He was exactly as he sounded over the phone. He loves to tease. Doesn't try to change me in any way. Never complains about the time taken away from him by my writing. Is always supportive and never denies me anything. If I searched the world over, I would never find another man like my Charlie.