Monday, December 7, 2009

I am not the first. Nor will I be the last.

Lots of people have blogged about Tiger's recent transgressions. (I should say "alleged" transgressions, but c'mon. He totally cheated on his wife. He knows it. I know it. And so does the rest of the world.)

Sarah over at State of the Obvious had something to say about it too. And I was so prolific in her comment section that I figured I might as well have my own post about it. I will tell you what I told her:

I don't contribute to the celebrity gossip industry. Sure, I read the headlines in the grocery store. But I don't know how many kids Angelina and Brad have, and I'm STILL not quite sure who the Kardashians are, or why they're famous. I didn't even find out the Balloon Boy was fake til like a month after the fact. Clueless. That's me.

But I know who Tiger Woods is. And so I'm taking his downfall pretty seriously.

I love The Family. I love Marriage. I love Love and Happiness and Bliss and Joy and all that goopy, gooey stuff. And there are too many people in the world who believe that it's all fairy tales. Too many people honestly believe that it's not possible to be happy with just one person for the rest of your life. Too many people who think infidelity is a given - the inevitable consequence to a years-old marriage without romance or passion.

And these people - these pessimistic, jaded people - point to real life. They point to the countless examples we have in Hollywood, politics and sports. It seems there isn't a single public figure that can have a good, healthy, happy marriage until death do they part. (If you know of any, PLEASE let me know. Mel Gibson's divorce set me back a while, too.)

So when I hear about another one biting the dust, I cringe. Because it seems to support Their Theory. Their heinous, faithless theory that marriages CAN'T be a forever gig.

And I say support their theory - but not prove. Because their theory is wrong. Dead wrong. That kind of happiness IS possible. I know it. I'm not a public figure, but I'd be willing to make myself the poster child for MY theory - There are Such Things as Fairy Tale Marriages.

Rant over.


Annette Lyon said...

Amen. This one even upset my 10-year-old daughter. One of her school teachers has a Tiger poster in her classroom, and she was so confused. "I thought he was a nice guy. Why would he do something like that?"

I don't know, sweetie.

(Besides being a dorkward who thinks he's god and won't' get caught?!)

At times like this, I try to remember couples like Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward (he did have one marriage before that, but they were married in 58 and it lasted until his death) and Bogart and Bacall. Bogart had three marriages before that one, and he knew that having 2 working actors was too hard. She agreed to not work while they were married--and it worked. Their marriage survived, and she went back to work after his death.

But at the same time, I've seen 30-year marriages in the ward I grew up in fall apart. Those send me for a loop as well.

Kristina P. said...

Yeah, I don't support the celebrity gossip industry either! I mean, I only buy US Weekly and Poeple every week. At least I'm not buying that other trash! I keep my celebrity trash classy.

And honestly, this story made me realize that there probably isn't a man in Hollywood who doesn't cheat.

Kimberly said...

My feelings oh so exactly! I, personally, am madly in love with my husband of eight years. There were times when I wasn't, but that was because for whatever childish, selfish reason, I had chosen not to be.

That's the crucial piece of truth that theory is missing. The element of CHOICE.

Riddle Girl said...

I've been having a hard time ignoring this one too. I just haven't heard anyone come down on him very hard for doing it. That is what I feel is a shame.

But we are lucky to have some AMAZING examples of how marriages CAN last and be 100% faithful...I love at the end of conference when they pan over to watch as the prophet and apostles link arms or hands with their wives and exit the building. Men and women who truly honor their marriage vows.

Rocketgirl said...

I completely agree. It makes me sick. With the fight on marriage now, this just gives more fodder to people to point at marriage and say "and you call marriage between a man and a woman SACRED?? HAH!" It just makes life so much harder for those of us trying to do it right.

Sarah said...

Hey you linked me, that's so awesome!

As for celebs and marriages that last forever...well, there aren't many. But, I certainly have grandparents and parents I can point to when I want to teach my kids about things that really matter. They are practically rock stars in my kids eyes, rock stars with ever-ready pocket change.

Love ya!

DeNae said...

I don't know about the not cheating part, but there are a number of celebrity marriages that have withstood the test of time. Paul Newman and Joann Woodward as a ferinstance. Ray Romano has been married 22 years. Kyra Sedgwick and Kevin Bacon at least 20. Granted, it ain't over til it's over, but they aren't ALL complete slimebags.

We're coming up on 25 years, and have never been happier or more in love.

In fact, isn't it fun to look around at your circle of friends and family, and see how many of them have beat the odds! It IS possible to live the fairy tale. It's just that fairy tales take a lot of work and sacrifice, something fewer and fewer people are willing or capable of doing.

Mei said...

Okay, I work in the gossip circuit, so here's my theory. I read a celeb study once that explained that something like 80-90% of athletes and performers will have an affair or transgression in their lifetime, because of some personality quirks combined with "lifestyle." If that's true, then it will look like nearly everyone in the public eye does have affairs-- because they are the ones in this particular career path.

Just food for thought. I don't necessarily believe the study, but it does make sense to me.

Melanie J said...

All you have to do to make it is marry someone awesome. Correction, marry someone YOU think is awesome. Which I did. So we're living the fairy tale, too. (Okay, there's a little more to it than that, but that's my first step in the recipe for success.)

Lara said...

These things always send me for a loop, too. Just because the people involved seem to be above the fray. The ones that obviously aren't don't bother me as much. Tiger Woods seemed like such a wholesome role model. It's incredibly disappointing, that's for sure.

But I know that marriage can and should be eternal! It takes hard work, though, and too many people are too selfish to commit to the work.

Kristi said...

I think it is heartbreaking, those poor children!!! What makes me the maddest about things like this is that the man doesn't realise or maybe doesn't care that his moments of "fun" cost the happiness and security of those people he promised to love. Let alone all the extended family and the public that he has pretended to for years. It is just sick. He has ruined so much for so many....
Yes happiness can happen - love can last. It does require giving up selfishness and it requires work. But I too believe in love, I know my hubby and I will be just as in love in 60 years as we are now. We work hard at putting the other first, and maybe that is one of the big problems with these people in the spotlight. They are used to putting themselves as #1, and they can't figure out how to really make another the main priority.

Joni said...

My husband is my rock, my anchor, my lover, my best friend. If there is ONE thing I am sure of, it's our relationship.

I think in the celebrity world marriage is often seen as temporary. Let's get together and if it works it works and if not we can always split up.

When the going gets tough the weak get going. And fighting over alimony and child support.

Because even fairy tales have bumps. If you are committed to each other, if BOTH PARTIES are committed to each other, you get over the bumps together. But committment is key.

Patrick Swayze and his wife were together through his entire acting career. I'm pretty sure Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson are still going strong.

It can happen.

Rachel Sue said...

I am right there with you on this one. Same as Mel Gibson. I was so disappointed in him. He really seemed like a good, family guy.

Honestly, I felt the same way when the whole Jon and Kate thing exploded. I don't do reality tv. I just don't. But I stumbled onto their show once and I loved how real they were. Yes, they fought, but then they would make up. I loved the way that they talked about marriage, about how they loved each other. (At least for the first and second season.) But then the last little bit when they got so popular and less real, it was really disapointing to me when I realized that they weren't going to make it.

LisAway said...

Mel Gibson is divorced? No, I think I heard that, but I'm not really up on celebrity gossip, either.

You know what is very funny, though? Just a few days before this whole thing happened I had mentioned to Greg for some reason, I have NO IDEA how it came up, but I told him that I was pretty sure Tiger was a good guy, family man and all that, and just a likable athlete (sorry, but I don't think many famous athletes are). And then Greg comes home a few days later and tells me about this.

HA. You should never judge, I guess. :(

I think it's so sad that so many people look to those Hollywood marriages as a sort of norm. Oh, the couple is so beautiful and in love. . . Oh, they're getting divorced? Too bad it didn't work out. And it's assumed that that is just what happens.

Also, as far as marrying the man you love, Melanie is right, but really, doesn't everyone think they're marrying someone awesome? Then doesn't everyone find out that they're actually a TOTAL JERK sometimes? Or at least misunderstandings make it feel that way? Sort of like you go into marriage with a vision of yourself as a loving, self sacrificing wife and mother and then realize that, no, you're a selfish brat.

Sometimes. It's getting past those moments, forgiving, stretching, working alone and together to go back where you were when you were both awesome.

And then it's awesome. And then it lasts forever and is better than anything you could imagine.

Katy said...

Ah, this has been bothering Tim and me too. What a loser.

(Your post reminds me of a lovely movie we just watched the other night: Enchanted. It IS possible to have a happily ever after!)

Brittany Ann said...

I adore you, do you know that? And I whole-heartedly concur, my husband and I live happily every day and look forward to an eternity lived out the same way. It's true that Hollywood is short on examples of real love, I can only think of one right now...Brad Paisley, a country singer, married to the gal from Father of The Bride. They have a cool marriage, they even got marriage counseling prior to getting married so they would know how to work through any possible issues.

Julie said...

As sad as it is, it seems that a lot of people don't take vows or commitments seriously.

I guess none of us "regular folk" can judge a celebrity's marriage because most of us don't know what it's like to be in the spotlight all of the time. It must make it difficult to feel like a normal person.


Vows and commitments are binding no matter how many people know who you are. Happiness doesn't just happen. It is always the end result of an effort that came before. Ditto for unhappiness. "As ye sow...."

Erin said...

It's not even necessarily a "fairy tale marriage." I know I work REALLY hard to make mine work, and it's certainly not always perfect and happy and pixie dust. But we know we love each other, and we know we are in it for eternity, and we know that it is worth it.

Thank you! Infidelity is wrong. Always wrong.

Erin said...

I have kind of been feeling bad ever since I left the comment because I kind of skimmed over (in my comment) exactly what you were trying to say. Yes, I agree with you - I think it's sad that celebrities think it's practically natural to step out on their spouses just because they are "bored." It is so sad.

kristi said...

Well said sister!!!!!! I agree completely!!!

Kazzy said...

Yes, another person in the spotlight dissing marriage by his selfish choices. And tomorrow we are meeting with some good friends who want to talk to us about their decision to divorce. ugh

Harmony said...

Who's the Balloon Boy? guess I'll have to look him up.

Harmony said...

Sorry. I have to comment again. Yes, it's true. I think maybe you and me have had this conversation at one point or another, that YES marriage can be happy! And what's all this talk about how hard it is. And the media is oh so awful. Unfortunately, the media produces our culture and sense of right & wrong, and it's just SICK! No wonder parents are having such a hard time with their teenagers, when all the kids see is infidelity and immodesty and they think it is normal.

Elizabeth said...

I heard a private eye talking on the news about how hard it is for these famous people because everywhere they go there are "vultures." I think that's a big part of why famous people have such a high incidence of cheating. But exactly BECAUSE marriage is, can be, and is supposed to be eternal, I want to see Mr. Woods and his wife work this out. I want to see him feel so terrible for what he did that it leaves an impression so deep that he never looks at another woman (no matter HOW HARD she's trying to seduce him.) That, to me, would be a triumph, and another argument against the divorce-on-demand jaded doubter group. I think they can do it, so I still have hope. He still is a good guy even if he screwed up bigtime. He'll prove it if he can repent.

Perpetual Mommy Exhaustion said...

Patrick there is an inspiring celebrity marriage. Married when they were both wee bairns (19 and 17, I think) and together and faithful till the day he died. Beautiful.
I can't talk about the cheaters. It destroyed my family and I sometimes think there is a special level in the telestial kingdom for these selfish #%&@* (you know, jerks) where they get to see a film of the consequences of their actions play over, and over, and over, and over....
Yes, I've been to therapy--I'm still working on the bitterness.

Stepper the Mighty said...

YES! An enthusiastic amen and a clap on the back, sistah!

My favorite example of a hollywood marriage that stuck: Tom Hanks.

It can be done.

Tessa Nelson said...

Thanks for the post. and it's all so true, no one takes it seriously anymore and it's so sad. That's not to say it's not a lot of work at times, but it's SO worth it!!!!!!!