In this era of being super-connected through our technology, the most shocking thing we can do today is to totally disconnect from another person. It's impossible to know why Charlize chose ghosting as her way of dealing with Sean, or even if that's actually what she did, but it makes me think about the whole idea of making a clean break from someone in a world that's all about connectivity.
Ashley Madison caters to married people and the motto of the site is "Life is short. Have an affair." This leads us to bigger questions regarding relationships and an examination of why a "cheating" website has such a huge number of users. What does this have to say about the modern state of marriage and monogamy?
While cheating can be extremely damaging to most relationships, an affair actually begins long before the act itself. Having an affair is often one person's way of signaling to their partner that something is wrong in the relationship. And, often one person uses cheating as a catalyst to either fix or flee from the problems.
The recent Ashley Madison hack hasn't just exposed user data - it's also brought to light our various attitudes toward marriage and monogamy in today's high-tech, high-strung society. There are many reasons people stray and technology enables infidelity in a way that is faster and easier -- although certainly not more secretive -- than ever before. Yet in the end, it is always a question of choice. "Will I break the promise I made to my spouse?" In the wake of the Ashley Madison hack, we're seeing a lot of "You got what you deserved!" opinions.
I'm a big believer in some personal autonomy. I don't feel I owe it to my husband to share every one of my deepest and darkest secrets. And I don't push him to tell me everything on his mind either. God no, I don't want to know everything on his mind. I'm a gal who enjoys a bit of mystery and his over-sharing would be a buzz kill. But there is a difference between "thought" and "action". It's fine to fantasize -- no harm is done.
This Netflix cleanse was obviously not on purpose and I don't advocate it for everyone. But by forcing myself to be alone and engage in activities that I like such as organizing and chatting on the phone I was allowing myself to be with my thoughts and be present in the moment. It was kind of awesome.
We spent our 19th wedding anniversary very much like we do every other day. Since that day and for almost two weeks, I have been contemplating the idea of a list. A list of 19 characteristics essential to a flourishing marriage. Without further ado, here are those nearly twenty. Because 19 is actually enough.