Does Your Marriage Need Help? Send Out a May Day Call!

This new intervention might surprise you.

Posted May 01, 2016

123RF.com
Source: 123RF.com

If you’ve ever watched old war movies, you’ve probably seen a pilot whose plane has just been shot down scream “May Day!” over his two-way radio.

These two little words have become known around the globe as a call for help. The expression comes from the French, m’aidez, which means, “help me.” 

But May 1 is also celebrated.

Known in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere as “May Day,” the initial day of May signifies the first day of Spring. It’s seen as the beginning of improved weather and, therefore, improved crops.

In the late 1800’s, May 1st was dubbed International Worker’s Day to celebrate the laborer’s victorious fight for a shorter work day (a typical work day went from 11 hours down to only eight).

Given that May Day represents, 1. a change in growing conditions, 2. a reduction in the amount of work required and 3. a call for help, it’s not  coincidental that I chose this day to launch the Parenting Marriage Webinar Intensive.

You may be wondering, “What exactly is a Parenting Marriage and who would be interested in this crazy-sounding idea?”

Let me answer the second part of the question first: The most likely group of people who would be interested in a Parenting Marriage are couples that have been unhappily married for a while but that can’t leave easily because of the kids.  Perhaps money is tight or perhaps there’s a special needs child at home.  

Yet, anyone who’s ever pondered the demise of a marriage knows that even when money, time and energy are no object, splitting up a family is a very hard thing to do.

That’s why a Parenting Marriage can be a sensible compromise to staying in a less than happy or healthy marriage, or going through a grueling divorce.

Below is a chart of how a traditional marriage and a Parenting Marriage compare and contrast.

            Tradition Marriage                           Parenting Marriage

           Emotion-based (love)                           Purpose-based

           Romantic                                              Practical

           Couple-centric                                      Kid-centric

           Out-dated model                                  Modern model

           One-size-fits-all                                    Can be personalized to fit

In a nutshell, couples remain in their marriage legally, but they don’t stay wedded emotionally. They are, in essence, changing their marital job description from lover, best friend and confidant to co-parents and co-workers. Instead of basing the relationship on an emotion (love), couples base their relationship on a common purpose.

Some of you may be thinking that this is nothing short of blasphemous (I know because I’ve seen your comments to this effect). People say things like, “That’s not ‘marriage.’” And, “That’s for people who are afraid or unable to commit.”

What naysayers don’t know is that people have been marrying in just this way for centuries. Far from being some crazy futuristic bad idea, a Parenting Marriage is actually a throwback to days of yore! It's even likely that a good number of marriages in the 1950s were some flavor of Parenting Marriage.

Millennials are rejecting the “traditional marriage” concept and have begun figuring out that, if they ever feel the urge to marry, they will marry on their own terms—not the terms of the culture, their parents or even their friends.

Times are definitely changing. We have more choice than ever before. Everything is evolving. Traditions like marriage, while they can help create structure for us, begin to make us feel constricted if they don’t change and grow with us. Much like an old pair of shoes.

Rather than throwing all your old shoes out, Parenting Marriage provides you with footwear that enables you to walk the next few thousand miles.

To learn more about Parenting Marriages and how they work, read my article, How You Can Stay Together Without Being Together. 

If you'd like to learn more about the Parenting Marriage Intensive, or to sign up, contact me at info@changingmarriage.com and put PMI in  the subject line. 

Oh, and Happy May Day!