Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Sexual Revolution: Surveying the Damage

It's not a pretty picture. To quote:
The Pill, far from reducing the numbers of  unwanted pregnancies, actually led to more. When women neglected to take the Pill, there  seemed all the more reason to use abortion as a form of birth  control. Despite the fact that, in the wake of the  Aids crisis, people were urged to use condoms and to indulge in safe-sex, the  message did not appear to get through. In the past few years, sexually transmitted  diseases among young people have hugely increased, with more and more young  people contracting chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and other diseases, many of  them unaware they were infected until after they had been sexually active with a  number of partners.

The divorce statistics tell another miserable  story. About one third of marriages in Britain end in divorce. And because many  couples do not marry at all before splitting up, the number of broken homes is  even greater. This time of year is when the painfulness of  family break-up is felt most acutely. January 3 has been nicknamed ‘divorce day’  by lawyers. In a moving article in the Mail recently, Lowri Turner, a  twice-divorced mother of three children, wrote about the pain of waking up on  Christmas morning without her children. She looks at the presents under the  tree, with no children to open them, and thinks: ‘This isn’t the way things are  supposed to be.’

Every parent who has been through the often  self-inflicted hell of divorce will know what she means. So will the thousands of children this  Christmas who spent the day with only one parent — and often with that parent’s  new ‘partner’ whom they hate. I hold up my hands. I have been divorced.  Although I was labelled a Young Fogey in my youth, I imbibed all the  liberationist sexual mores of the Sixties as far as sexual morality was  concerned.

I made myself and dozens of people extremely  unhappy — including, of course, my children and other people’s children. I am  absolutely certain that my parents, by contrast, who married in 1939 and stayed  together for more than 40 years until my father died, never strayed from the  marriage bed. There were long periods when they found  marriage extremely tough, but having lived through years of aching  irritation  and frustration, they grew to be Darby and Joan, deeply  dependent upon one  another in old age, and in an imperfect but  recognisable way, an object lesson  in the meaning of the word ‘love’. (Read entire post.)

1 comment:

julygirl said...

It seems the generations who suffered the most hardships were also able to suffer through tough times in their marriage and come out the other end still intact.