I wrote an article called “Who Will You Marry”? The article mentions that economist data shows that the phenomenon of “power union” in American marriage is becoming more and more obvious-high-income people and high-income people Marriage, highly educated people and highly educated people get married.
Economists are helpless, and we are speechless. In the online message area where that article was published, we made a performance art and only released a message from a reader-“I only marry the one I love”.
We expressed our attitude, but the problem remains unsolved. What kind of principles should be followed in the event of marriage?
”New York Times” columnist David Brooks recently wrote an article called “Which Romantic System Do You Belong to?”
Brooks is one of my favorite writers, and he wrote the books “Community Animals” and “Road of Character”.
He first wrote that there was a female writer named Polina Allenson who grew up in Russia and immigrated to the United States at the age of 16 years. She expressed her views on Americans’ views on love and marriage.
Allenson said that the Russians believe that love is doomed to heaven. You cannot resist when love comes. People are willing to make sacrifices for love, and they can even bear pain. In short, everything should make way for love.
However, Americans don’t think so. Allenson found that Americans are particularly particular about “choice.” When Americans look for love and marriage partners, they will particularly rationally compare and compare – can the other person meet my various needs? Can I exercise my rights comfortably in this relationship? It’s like choosing a product that suits you.
Allenson is critical of Americans’ views on marriage. She believes that Americans place too much emphasis on themselves, have a strong sense of boundaries, and are particularly reluctant to rely on each other. Allenson asked, is this American “self-reliance and self-reliance” too exaggerated, shouldn’t people rely on each other in marriage?
Brooks felt this way. He called the Russian marriage philosophy “fate system” and the American marriage philosophy “selection system”.
Speaking of which, I really want to add one sentence. In fact, in addition to these two systems, some Chinese parents’ marriage concept is also a system, perhaps it should be called the “index system”. These parents select their children according to a series of quantified hard indicators: how much they pay, how tall they are, how tall they are, and how old they are. Although Americans are rational, at least they are not so straightforward, and Chinese parents directly index people.
Of course, most Chinese are not in this attitude. So which system is better, the Russian system or the American system?
Brooks said it was not good. The “fate system” is too sloppy, but the “selection system” is too realistic. Americans really regard marriage as a “market” and choose what suits them, but they are also chosen by others-so rational, but the results are not ideal. After picking a lot of eyes, many people simply don’t get married. More than half of women who have children before the age of 30 are unmarried mothers.
Brooks said that when you look at the old couples who have worked together for most of their lives and have a happy marriage, they will find that their marriage is neither a “fate system” nor a “choice system”, but a “contract system”.
Under the “contract system”, marriage is a promise. In order to fulfill this promise, both parties need to change themselves.
You don’t need to carefully select the other half in the marriage market. The “contract system” believes that marriage has a certain chance. You may meet a person who is particularly exciting to you and say that you get married. But please note that this step is not the most important.
The most important step is the second step, which is how the two parties can maintain the marriage relationship.
Brooks said that the two of you will establish the concept of “we”. From then on, in the priority level of life, the “relationship” of the two of you is ranked first, the second is the needs of the other, and your own needs can only be ranked third.
The “contract system” believes that after marriage, the two parties should not overemphasize individual independence, but should rely on each other.
Well, the most crucial point in this “contract” is that once the marriage is in crisis, both parties must understand that they cannot withdraw easily. The solution to the crisis is to go one step further to tap the relationship between the two parties.
But why is this so? I live free, why should I get married and be bound by this contract?
Brooks said that marriage is not just two people together, but also a higher purpose. Obviously, the higher purpose is the child, and two people must work together to take care of the child.
However, there is a more important goal than children, that is, we want to increase our “loveliness” through marriage. The word “cuteness” here does not refer to the kind of clever and cute children, but the meaning of “worth being loved”.
To put it bluntly, a married person will slowly become less selfish. He will learn to love others, and he will become more worthy of being loved and become a better person.
In the final analysis, the starting point of the “contract system” is that love is more valuable than selfishness. Doing things is always just to meet your own needs. This kind of life is actually meaningless. It is still a self-suffocating process. Only by learning to love others can you be truly happy.
I also saw a research article, an economics paper by Wang Zhibo and Li Changhong of South China Normal University, “Are all good men married-exploring the formation mechanism of male wage marriage premiums in China”. This article uses statistical methods to exclude all possible related factors (such as age, etc.), and finds that men who are in a marital state have a salary that is 6.8% higher than men who are not.
You might say that someone who earns a lot of money can only find his wife-and this study proves that this is not the case. In fact, men who have been married for less than 3 years do not have such a salary premium. It is after 3 years that the longer they are in a marriage, the higher the men ’s salary. Researchers have even found that this premium cannot be explained by “someone takes care of themselves after getting married” or “the man has a stronger sense of responsibility after getting married”.
What really controls this premium is the quality of his wife. The researchers concluded that a high-income and highly educated wife has a “husband effect” on her husband. To put it bluntly, after a man married her, she became a better person, so she earned a higher income. Therefore, not all good men are married, but become good men only when they get married.
This is a statistical study conducted by economists, and only observable variables can be used, so we are talking about “hard indicators” such as income and education. Even so, we can think that this research is actually what Brooks calls “the higher purpose of marriage”.
I think that the “contract system” is not just a concept of marriage, it should be true for any serious cause. Asking myself what I like all day, always making choices, without constantness, this kind of life is actually not pleasant. It is only this philosophy that is worth pursuing to create a better relationship, a better career, and even a better self.