I will not bother copying the entire post here, but it is very touching on face value. However Sacks then goes on to insinuate that it is sad that more people do not achieve this result by saying that long term married couples are heroes. I agree with this statement, but only to a degree.
I have had the privilege of knowing many people who were married for long terms (20+, 30+ 40+ and even 50+ years). I asked the women how they did it. Their response 99% of the time is this: "I am lucky to have found a man who puts up with me and my quirks (or some variation). I ask the man the same question and their response is generally the same (different vocabulary) responses were similar to this: She puts up with my crotchety ol' self. This one was my favorite which is why is stuck with me. Now I would love to be in a relationship with someone who has met me, has fallen in love, and knows that I will not change after we marry. Yes I enjoy surfing on the 'Net. Yes I do like shopping if the money is there (if it isn't I do not go into debt to shop). Yes I have friends and I will NOT sacrifice those friends for him. He is NOT the end-all and be-all.
Now I also expect him to stay the same way he was when we dated. You were chivalrous then by opening doors for me, open doors for me after we marry. You buy birthday and Christmas gifts for me based upon my interests, rather than on what society says a woman wants, keep doing so after we get married. You only consume a certain amount of alcohol before we married, do not increase your consumption tenfold (one or two beers a night before marriage with occasional benders - like once every two months do not equal 3 or 4 beers a night with benders every weekend night after we get married). Denouncing woman abuse before we marry - only to commit it yourself after we marry is a big no-no. Crying the blues about your poor life in an attempt to show me sympathy and then me discovering the true circumstances later is also a big no-no. I will share my whole soul with someone I care for. Do not take that and turn it back on me later and try to stab me with it. In other words just as all of the long term couples I have spoken to have said - deal with me - you knew what I was when we met.
In closing I am very happy that Glenn's parents were able to stay married for as long as they have been married. I wonder what they will say to answer this question - how did you do it? This also gives Glenn's marriage some strong fortitude - he has long term marriage as his lesson, so he will likely have a long term marriage. Those of us who lived in abusive relationships generally come from dysfunctional backgrounds so we are likely to repeat that behavior. I did exactly as my mother. She was giving and naive and she wound up being hurt by that. I "was" naive. No longer. I will NEVER allow a man to hurt me like that again. Sometimes men - you must look to your gender and ask yourself what did he do to hurt this woman, rather than pointing fingers at women and saying what awful creatures we are. Perhaps if you did so, the gap would shrink. Women have been demeaned and lessened as people for a very long time. Because some men are being hurt right now for the last 10-20 years, some women might no be happy about sitting and singing Kumbaya, holding hands, and meditating with those men. Some might very well be like me and could have listened one too many times to the sob story of a man. Listen to my ex - he can spill them out like no-tomorrow.
I must also add that there are some men (and women) who cannot and should not marry. I believe my ex is one of those. In speaking to two of my past boyfriends, I have been assured I am not one of those. In fact those past beaus regret their actions in ending our relationships. I am not one who will "go back" however. It is over, it is over. It was ended for a reason, whether it be because of bad choices on either parties choosing, or simply because that person was placed in that moment in time for a reason.