Andrea has a fine op-ed in this morning’s Montreal Gazette about the heart-wrenching case of a woman left behind with her children by a wealthy ex-partner who only sends her $35,000/month in child support. Actually, that’s just the hook. The serious point is that marriage isn’t the same as living together, and should therefore be treated differently by the state.
And a splendid point that is. I have had my share of failed relationships before meeting Dear Husband, and I can tell you that there is, indeed, a very big difference between shacking up with someone and making a life-long commitment to stick with them through the good and the bad. The piece of paper, it turns out, matters a great deal. I remember my hand shaking as I signed it (now of course I’d be hard-pressed to tell you exactly where, in my house, said piece of paper is stored, but that is NOT the point).
Marriage isn’t for everybody, and that’s fine. Nobody should be forced to marry who doesn’t wish to. But to pretend that drifting into shared domesticity is the same as getting married is wrong, and not just for those who can’t get more than $35,000/month out of their ex-boyfriends.by