Are Relationships Supposed to Last Forever?

When human beings first came up with the idea of marriage or linking yourself officially/legally to one person for your whole life the average person only lived about 30 years. It is a lot easier to say "I do" when that only means for about 10-15 years. Now that we live well into our 80s it means that the "I do"s could mean for 50-60 years. And I find myself asking the question, "Is it realistic to expect a relationship, no matter how healthy, to last that long?" Is the perfect relationship a thing of fairy tales?

Divorce rates have increased steadily over the years and I am beginning to wonder if it is biologically impossible for our species to stay together for the number of years a lifetime is nowadays. Maybe marriages have a shelf life and when they start going bad we should not feel guilty about moving on. Today the average span of a marriage is just over 7 years. It has become so prevalent that a German politician is trying to get his government to look into the idea of a 7 year marriage contract. After your 7 years the two would evaluate their relationship and either renew the contract or move on. Interesting idea, I think.

There is also the whole issue of whether human beings are biologically wired for monogamy. Women will argue that men cannot commit to one woman and men will wonder why they have to.

What is the solution? Seven year marriage contracts? Open marriages? Serial monogamy? Remaining single? Who knows?

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