Pre-nups - Escape route from commitment?
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Robert Heaven: Counsellor / Psychotherapist / Clinical Supervisor
22nd February, 20110 Comments
If your fiancée tells you they want an escape route from your relationship, would you feel pressured to accept? Would your level of trust and sense of commitment towards them change?
If you are answering “yes” perhaps marriage which demands full measure of commitment isn’t the right route for you.
Prenups are arrangements for endings before “forever” has taken place and in some ways much like funeral plans which offer many of the same benefits. i.e. peace of mind and a measure of financial security. While death is a certainty, relationship endings are not. It certainly isn’t romantic to be thinking about endings before things have only just started and a sure way to pour water on the flame of love. But it’s not just romance that can suffer, it’s trust too.
Trust is a foundation stone of all relationships. It is implicit in relationships from a very early stage, nurtured by a sense of commitment. Prenups offer an escape route from commitment and while it might never be taken, the planned ending exists nonetheless to haunt the relationship and undermine trust in the basic premise that marriage is a commitment to spend a life with another person until death do them part.
Diminished trust within a relationship can have many affects. It can be a source of constant resentment; implying that one or other is not 100% focused on making things work. At the far end of this, is that a prenup can be used as part of a threat, as a weapon to be brought out whenever there are disagreements or arguments between the couple. A far cry from romance.
So perhaps the question for couples thinking of having a prenup is about how much do they really trust each other? Prenups sew the seeds of doubt in fields of love and undermine the foundation stone of trust. in their marriage
Prenups are arrangements for relationship endings and hint at the loss of the love. Nothing in them matches the start of love and the hope of a life long commitment to another person. When two people decide they want to be married it’s usually because they love each other and they both want what marriage traditional offers; the underlining of a commitment to be together forever. Perhaps the last thing in mind at this time is about life beyond “forever”.
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