In Defense Of Starter Marriage

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just married car with cans
Author Sascha Rothchild makes the case for a starter marriage after getting a divorce at age 30.

For every email or comment I get thanking me for writing my book, How To Get Divorced By 30, or for expressing in articles and blogs how a first marriage can be a positive rite of passage, I get an angry email or comment asking, "How dare you destroy the sanctity of marriage!?"

To those irate people I say, thanks for giving me all the credit and power of destroying an ancient institution. (In truth, my contribution was hardly necessary; there were major matrimonial problems long before I came into the picture.) I'm not causing divorce, I'm just relaying my own divorce experience, which has been overwhelmingly fantastic. 

The first time I got married, I was 27 and made many of the standard mistakes, including adhering to an arbitrary timetable. I thought dating for three years meant it was time to get married, and marriage at the time seemed easier than breaking up. I also believed that opposites attracted, and I was a type-A, neurotic go-getter and he a laid-back, lovable stoner. At first we complemented each other; I helped him get motivated to put down the video game controller and actually pursue an acting career, and he helped me calm down and enjoy the quiet moments between stressing out about my writing career. But after awhile we both just resented the other's very different attitude, rhythm and personality. We were also so conscious of never stepping on each other's toes that we ended up compromising to the point that we were both miserable. I loved Hollywood; he loved Venice Beach. So we bought a condo in a place we both hated: Sherman Oaks. This sense of democracy just left us feeling unfulfilled. The Shocking Behavior That's Bad For Relationships  

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