Have you ever wondered why your parents continue to argue all the time, don’t seem to get along at all, and yet don’t ever consider leaving each other? My parents had a love marriage and have been together for almost thirty-two years and I’ve been around for twenty-six of them. They fight, complain, curse their fate and usually don’t care who their audience for the day is.
I remember a period of time when we didn’t need alarm clocks in the house because they would argue from seven in the morning. No reason was ever small or big for them get started. There was no space to find peace in the house. My sister and I hated being at home so we always found a reason to stay out. Sometimes when we were there, out of frustration I’d question my parents asking why they didn’t split up years ago? Why they continue to put themselves through this daily charade? What’s kept them together if all the love between them seems to be lost? I never got my answer because I was too immature to understand. However, the generation I’ve grown up in believes what can’t be fixed can be left out and we just need to move on. I convinced myself their generation wasn’t taught independence the way we were.
A few months ago, I was driving home with my dad and we were talking about someone we know who split from their spouse ages ago. Over the many years, we saw how it affected their daughter and her understanding always far beyond her age. I slyly directed the question at dad on why he and mom never considered it; then he said something that still plays in my head, “Sometimes, you have to do what is best for your children. There is a reason you brought them in this world, a little inconvenience cannot make you destroy that.”
I’ve since started noticing the nuances of their relationship. They don’t keep secrets, they have both found their love for traveling and after a long period of struggling towards a better life, they are finally able to enjoy it. They’ve lost touch with their respective friend circles because we’ve shifted cities and houses quite a bit. We have a few family friends and my mom’s sisters are all enjoying retired lives with their husbands. So they’ve made a group of their own to host house parties, plan weekend trips, international vacations, movies and plays from time to time. In fact, my parents watch way too many movies. They’ve chosen to look on the bright side of certain things to find their own kind of happiness.
I know they’ve compromised a lot to be where they are today, to let us be where we are today. Everything they’ve done and created has not only ensured we have a comfortable life, they will never quit being our parents. It’s the one role of their life they take most seriously.
Author’s edit: This article soon brought up counter views and I would like to clear some of the air. Why my parents never split up is a question that has haunted me for a long time and I wanted to share that perspective through this piece. I did not intend for this article to be judgemental of those whose parents took the decision to separate. My parents found strength in their togetherness for a better life but it may not be the same for everyone else. A bad marriage is a bad marriage, every individual has the right and freedom to happiness and they must do whatever is best for them.