Episode 74: A Brief History of Love and Marriage: How We Inherit Our Stories
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[00:00:00] Staci Bartley: Hey, thanks for coming. Welcome to the Love Shack.
[00:00:11] Staci Bartley: Time to welcome you into the Love Shack. It's a little place where we get to get together, explore fresh perspectives, eavesdrop on some amazing and juicy conversations, as well as discover the things that really matter. And I hope to have a little bit of fun along the way. This is episode number 74.
[00:00:35] Staci Bartley: It's going to be a brief history of love and marriage and a look at how it is we inherit the stories that we believe to be true around holy matrimony. Today in the Love Shack, we are going to cover chapter two of my upcoming book that will be released on my birthday, March 30th. It's a pleasure to be here with you.
[00:00:54] Staci Bartley: I am very excited to share this information with you and so delighted and honored to be sharing finally, some of the core foundations of my book now that's been in the making for the last four years. So welcome into the Love Shack with us. It's great for that.
[00:01:09] Tom Bartley: Absolutely great to have you with us today.
[00:01:11] Tom Bartley: We're going to talk about how we all inherit stories of love and marriage from our parents and friends and society. The problem is these stories can often be unrealistic and create a lot of unnecessary pressure and panic when we get them wrong.
[00:01:26] Staci Bartley: I got them wrong. I mean, I, I definitely right out of the gate, kind of got a lot of the teachings and precepts and principles around love and marriage wrong, which put me in my second marriage and the place where I was going to get it all right.
[00:01:39] Staci Bartley: And so then I tried to adhere to the story only to find that there were a lot of holes and flaws in the story. So my hope and intent today, is that here in the Love Shack, as we take a look at the history of love and marriage and see how these stories have changed over time, this will give us the ability to hopefully give ourselves some grace and to look at some of these conversations in a brand new way.
[00:01:59] Staci Bartley: We're going to explore why it's important to question these stories and to create your own based on your own unique experiences. Okay.
[00:02:07] Tom Bartley: And we're going to explore, how our concept of love and marriage has passed down to us from generation to generation. How it often doesn't match up with reality. And the truth is these stories can hold us back from finding our own happy endings.
[00:02:20] Staci Bartley: So get ready to gain a new, fresh perspective on love and marriage. Learn about the history of love and marriage today and gain some insights into how our stories can hold us back. So stay with us to get inspired on how you can create the relationship that you've always wanted. And understand some of the beliefs that you hold tried and true, and maybe give yourself a little bit of an exhale and some grace, not only for yourself but for your partner, recognizing and realizing we're all doing the very best we know-how. And so this is going to be one you'll want to stay with us on we'll be right back.
[00:03:08] Advertisement: I met Staci and Tom, about two years ago, I was at a point in my relationship where I was ready to file for divorce. Not that I wanted to, but I just felt hopeless and helpless. I'd been through other counseling and coaching and didn't find any success with Staci and Tom's methods. I was able to eliminate insecurities, set boundaries, plant my flag, eliminate rabbit holing.
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[00:05:06] Tom Bartley: Welcome back inside the Love Shack. Great to have you here we are your hosts, Tom and Staci Bartley, along with our incredible engineer at the helm of spaceship KKNW Eric Rider and just a couple of quick housekeeping notes. Cause I realized if you if this is your first time listening, number one, thank you.
[00:05:23] Tom Bartley: Number two, you may be like, who are these people? We're Tom and Staci Bartley and we help couples rescue their relationship and ultimately create a lifetime of love. That's what we're all about. And we are talking about chapter two of my wonderful wife's, upcoming book, and the name of that book is Feeling Like Your Marriage Is Dead?
[00:05:41] Tom Bartley: Take a pause and a breath, and please hear the subtitle, A Divorce Mediator's Guide To Ensuring A Lifetime Of Love. And we're going to jump right into the heart of the matter. We've got a lot to share. Another important housekeeping note is after our show is live on KKNW and thank you to KKNW and the team.
[00:05:59] Tom Bartley: We so appreciate working with you guys. It's uploaded to all the podcasts or wherever you listen to a podcast, you can find it. And more importantly, or as importantly, with very comprehensive show notes. Our daughter, Brooke is huge behind the scenes, helps us look good, smell good. And she puts everything up on our podcast page.
[00:06:18] Tom Bartley: So everything we've talked about, you don't have to worry about trying to write it down and it's all there for you. We also transcribe every single episode. So if you'd rather read it than listen to us, that's available for you as well.
[00:06:28] Staci Bartley: Yeah, that's absolutely true. So let's dive into the heart of the matter.
[00:06:31] Staci Bartley: Here's the thing. Our stories and what we're going to cover today and why it's relevant is when challenges arise and life gets messy, we do begin to weave a story about where we failed at following the rules, essentially. Where is it? We got it wrong. How did I make a mistake? Right. And is it me? And is it you?
[00:06:52] Staci Bartley: And then I know for myself and my clients, I mean, we start to really go, okay. It's because I had sex before marriage. Okay. It's because, you know, I didn't pray enough. Okay. It's because I didn't get married in a certain place. In my religion, it was, you get married in the temple. If you don't get married in the temple, then you're going to struggle. And it's helpful to explore some of the beliefs and the ideas behind what it is we're doing.
[00:07:18] Staci Bartley: Because when we believe certain things,, we create a lot of expectations about how it has to go, about who we need to be, and about who our partners need to be. And we think it must be because I violated one of the rules of what it was I was taught or how I was brought up.
[00:07:35] Staci Bartley: And this results in us feeling like, especially as a parent, you know, my, my mom ended up having sex before marriage, for example, and this was the answer to why it was, she was very unhappy in her marriage. And so when it came to her children, she was adamant that that absolutely be adhered to, because she believes she was trying to help us find the happiness that had alluded her.
[00:07:59] Staci Bartley: And so you can see how these principles and teachings intensify as they get handed down from generation to generation. So the sobering reality of this whole conversation is as we look back and explore the history, which we're going to do today for the heart of the matter, it's our opportunity to, hopefully, my intent here is to give yourself and your whole exploration of the story, some grace.
[00:08:25] Staci Bartley: When I was trying to understand why it was I couldn't sleep at night because not only had I ended my second marriage and it didn't go right. I was trying to also get myself out of eternal perpetuity, which is, oh, you know, we don't marry for time in my religion. We marry for all eternity, which I don't know how long that is.
[00:08:46] Staci Bartley: But at the time, it seemed like a really long time. And not only had I done this to myself, but I had actually taken this away from my family. And so this idea racked heavy on my heart and I wasn't until I started exploring the history and exploring where the ideals of marriage and where it comes from and why it is, we believe what we do, but I found some freedom and some grace and all of that.
[00:09:12] Staci Bartley: And so I find that this conversation really supports and helps a lot of our clients to kind of like take a breath and just let's take an exploration in regards to why it is you believe what you believe. And. And what if we could like gain some fresh perspectives on this conversation. So all that to say the sobering reality is this whole thing about marriage...
[00:09:36] Staci Bartley: It turns out it's just a story and nobody has ever been successful in living the rules and receiving its promised guarantee because the premise it was created on was not that of ensuring love for a lifetime. Indeed. It has way more to do with wealth and land and money, safety. It's kind of like a Santa Claus story for relationships where, okay, I've got to tell you there's no Santa Claus, but the idea of Santa Claus, the hope and the promise of eternity, of love, of the promise of security, it does live on in our hearts and that's not necessarily a good or a bad thing, but it is like a story.
[00:10:19] Staci Bartley: You have anything to say about that?
[00:10:20] Tom Bartley: No, I, again, this, none of this is intended, other than to expand your, your, your vantage point, and bring some new context and relevance to what it is that many of us are navigating and, and it, it is not serving us and how it's holding us. Right.
[00:10:36] Staci Bartley: And as you might expect many come from historical, national, and religious doctrine.
[00:10:42] Staci Bartley: So as a disclaimer, I want to confirm that our commentary on these thoughts and feelings is not meant to disrespect any religious affiliation or nationality. I honor them all. We truly honor them all. Our only intent here is to share information about the historic past of holy matrimony. And present its frameworks so that you can determine why you personally support certain aspects of marriage or why you might find yourself opposing them.
[00:11:11] Staci Bartley: And that is a great place for us to land. So let's dive in, shall we? Anything else you want to say about that before we move on? Okay. So it's, as we look back, it's only been the last 30 years or so that intimate relationships and marriage went hand in hand. You know, when you and I were growing up, babe, I mean, we never even thought about the idea of not marrying and having a family and that, that would be the way you would go about it.
[00:11:39] Staci Bartley: I remember actually, and I want to hear about this too. I don't know that I've ever asked you this question. Did you get excited about being in relationships? Like if, if I were in high school and I didn't have a special somebody and we weren't going steady and I wasn't wearing the ring right around my neck, like that meant that you weren't desired. Did you have that feeling?
[00:12:00] Tom Bartley: Yeah. And I was a little bit late to the party compared to you Mrs. Bartley. But no, I mean my first girlfriend was Carol Johnson. Carol, if you're listening, how the heck are you? And so, yeah, I mean, no doubt. I mean, and let me just repeat, we think to reexamine.
[00:12:18] Tom Bartley: What's taking place now is so new in the historical perspective, you know, the younger generation, they're not all that, you know, getting, you know, hooked up and having a partner, whether that be for a certain period of time or a lifetime is not, that doesn't seem to be that big, of a of importance.
[00:12:35] Staci Bartley: Well, here, I mean, it was, it was high on my radar, especially when I was in high school about, you know because the idea and my belief were that you were going to graduate high school, you were going to do a little schooling, and then you were going to get married, settle down and have some kids. I mean, that's what a good woman does.
[00:12:51] Staci Bartley: And so the relationship was high on my radar. Like, like I wanted to be in a relationship. I was seeking it out. And ironically, as I was raising my own children, Right. I have many children, out of my six that didn't really get interested in relationships until even after graduating high school. And they're in highlights like a huge gap.
[00:13:13] Staci Bartley: Right? Exactly. Like, like the relationship was not the primary source of seeking, which I feel like it was when you and I were growing up. Would you say that's true? Absolutely. Yeah. And so here today, we honor partnerships outside of holy matrimony, but many of us still carry a belief that marriage is the primary delivery device for relationship lists and longevity.
[00:13:35] Staci Bartley: In spite of all the changes that we see among us, we still reach for that guarantee of longevity when it comes to marriage. And this is because marriage historically has been believed to be a way to guarantee positive experiences and a way to foster relationships that will last a lifetime. And there's some truth to that, that we're going to uncover, but it's not what you might think.
[00:13:59] Staci Bartley: So even though relationships come to us in many forms outside of marriage, these days, we seem to cling to the idea that when we finally get married, every insecurity we have concerning relationships will be resolved. Also, such an idea is quite marketable. For example, I recently came across an online matchmaking service ad that will guarantee clients a marriage within 12 months, while for a small price tag of $10,000.
[00:14:35] Staci Bartley: Now it made me wonder what does a person purchasing this service stop to consider. Do they ever think about the reality of this question? What happens after the wedding? Do they have what it takes to build a healthy relationship? Even in the years that follow in spite of paying $10,000 for the service to give you a bride?
[00:15:02] Staci Bartley: Hmm. And sadly, I've had many single clients say to me, all I need to do is find Mr. or Mrs. Right. And every time I hear this, I pose the question of, well, once you found them and married them, what happens next? Most often my clients look back at me with like this deadpan stare because they have never really contemplated such.
[00:15:30] Staci Bartley: And the answer to this question, the reality is, they say things like, well, I guess we'll buy a house and like have some kids, whoa. Now, what's just happened there. When you add kids and a mortgage, et cetera, is we've just added a tremendous amount of complexity. And so I just want to say marriage at the end of the day does not give our relationships anything that it doesn't already have.
[00:16:01] Staci Bartley: Like, it's not the guarantee that we've been taught. So where does this all come from? And that's what I want to share with you today. So like, this was such a freeing moment when I realized that marriage doesn't give us anything that we don't already have. And somewhere in the cockles of my own heart, I already knew that to be true, but I wanted to understand why it is I had so bought into the idea that it was going to be the guarantee to happiness and longevity.
[00:16:29] Staci Bartley: And then there's this blissful thing that I thought once I got it right, would be guaranteed to me. And not only to me but to my family and posterity.
[00:16:38] Tom Bartley: And I'll just, yeah, we're going to pull snippets out of Staci's chapter two, you know because there's a lot of, there's a lot of history in this chapter that I quite frankly never knew about, but, and you know, at the end of the show, we'll let you know, we'll give you a place to, get on a list and cause we're going to do a fun promotion when the book is launched. So don't worry about that, but we're going to be pulling, Staci's going to be reading some snippets out of there because there are very significant historical references to this whole marriage journey.
[00:17:04] Tom Bartley: That quite frankly, I don't think many of us know.
[00:17:07] Staci Bartley: Well, so let me just ask you, babe. I mean, when you got married, did you feel like it was going to last the long haul?
[00:17:14] Tom Bartley: Yeah. I mean, that was my intent forgetting, you know, for, with my first wife to get married was, yeah. I mean, I always, I always, if I was going to take that step.
[00:17:21] Tom Bartley: It was a, I mean, it was significant. I wasn't going to do it in a flippant manner. Well, I, I don't know if I thought about it if it was going to be, you know, absolutely for the rest of my life, but I knew it was significant that I was making this next step.
[00:17:41] Tom Bartley: I just, my sense was it was the right next step for me to, to, to take in relationship with my first wife, Roxanne.
[00:17:49] Staci Bartley: Why is marriage the next step?
[00:17:51] Tom Bartley: You know, I didn't have any other, I didn't know of any other option just like you and me, that will be an episode for another time is outside of marriage.
[00:17:59] Tom Bartley: What is available for us? Cause I absolutely know, just as in other places, there is no neutral ground, just like in our careers, like on our physical or dietary choices, there's no neutral, meaning we're either going forwards or backward. So if we're going to deepen our relationship with a person, what does one do outside of marriage?
[00:18:19] Tom Bartley: I didn't know. I didn't know. And that's why we created our lease option contract for love. But again, I'm not gonna... that's we don't want to go off on that tangent, but cause that's what everybody does.
[00:18:29] Staci Bartley: Yes. Well, so and that, that takes me back to what we had said at the beginning of this conversation is our ideals were, okay: here's how this is going to roll. Right? This is the story we bought into. How this is going to play out is you're going to grow up. You're going to turn into an adult and you're going to find a special someone, and you're going to settle down and you're going to get married and you're going to have kids and you're going to raise kids. And in raising those kids, right, you're going to fall more in love. And then you're going to get the house with the white picket fence and the dog and the cat. And then those kids are going to grow up and you're going to be so proud of what it is you've accomplished and then you're going to die.
[00:19:05] Staci Bartley: But marriage is the vehicle to ensure all of that happens. So here's, as we dive into the history, what you need to know about it for most of history, marriage was not synonymous with the creation of a family. And I found that to be fascinating. It was not. The consolidation of intimacy within a relationship is a new idea.
[00:19:32] Staci Bartley: In fact, previous civilizations created and enforced a wide number of rules and regulations. When it came to marriage, how we do this and why we do this, for example, in Southern India one bride was shared with several brothers. And this was thousands of years ago. A new idea on polygamy. Like that is not a new idea.
[00:19:58] Staci Bartley: That is an old idea in ancient Rome marriages, between aristocratic males. It was lawful at one point in time because it created a legal distinction between the two socioeconomic sanctions of Rome at the time. Despite these differences, right, we have many things to discover. In fact, in medieval Europe, marriage among teenagers was used to protect family influences and valuable property.
[00:20:33] Staci Bartley: So these systems of marital processes historically over time, all have a common link that marriage could be only considered legitimate if both parties were of the same social class. And that's very important. Because in Europe, medieval Europe, forbidden by law was to marry up or down in your social class.
[00:20:56] Staci Bartley: Like you were defined by your social class. It was legally forbidden that for example, a peasant marries up into some of the more economically rich social-economic places of society. Yeah. So that was illegal. That was, not, not allowed, was not allowed. So that being the case. This is kind of the premise that we start to explore marriage, as we know it today. Different civilizations have used marriage historically as a way to maneuver around the societal convention as well.
[00:21:30] Staci Bartley: Like if social class and the respect of money, property, kids, social class, legacy, wealth, is of the utmost importance, China got very, very clever. And there's a 3000-year-old practice in China where married young maidens can marry a person who's dead. And what this does is if they do what they call a ghost marriage, which by the way is prevalent and was prevalent for thousands of years.
[00:22:02] Staci Bartley: It's a way to seal the bonds of unity between two clans and ensure prosperity for the two clans. And the person that they're marrying is not even alive. I encourage you to Google ghost marriage because that in and of itself is a fascinating thing.
[00:22:22] Tom Bartley: Kind of interesting that we hear about ghosting so much now.
[00:22:25] Staci Bartley: Yes. And in China, they've been doing it for thousands of years, as a way. So then think about women coming into some kind of social status and making money, et cetera, as a businesswoman. And what ends up happening is, heck if I marry, I'm going to kind of give all that away. So I'm gonna marry a dead person.
[00:22:44] Staci Bartley: And then in marrying that dead person, I don't have to be constrained by the obligations of marriage and I retain my social wealth, my prominence, and society as though I am a married person. And I can avoid all of the social, like prejudice and judgment by being unmarried in my culture and in my society.
[00:23:06] Staci Bartley: That's fascinating when you think about that. Iran, we think of Iran or, or Muslims to be somewhat conservative. In 1979 after the revolution happened, there was garnered legally, a temporary union where you could be seen in public together as, as a boy and a girl, not only could you be seen in public, but you could also get a 24-hour pass to have sex as called a "mullah.".
[00:23:35] Staci Bartley: And you can also Google that. And a mullah was issued so that we could be given this opportunity to explore something outside the realm of marriage. Is this gonna work? Are we good for each other, et cetera? So what these examples aim to prove is that marriage is an abstract concept with ample room for interpretation. And not only is it culturally right across the board but there have been many, many traditions and or laws that are a result of how we are going to do this thing called marriage.
[00:24:12] Staci Bartley: So for those of us in the west, we are typically governed by Christianity as our basis, like our foundation of where a lot of our society and our conversations and our religious beliefs come from. Yes. I want to impress upon you that it was in the New Testament. If we're going to resort to the Bible because I go to the Bible because it is kind of the doctrine where all Christian religions support the Bible, you know, where I come from, we have the book of Mormon, but not everybody aspires to the book of Mormon.
[00:24:46] Staci Bartley: So let's go to a book, of the spiritual writ that we can all agree on, right? When it comes to this conversation of Christianity and you look like you have some thoughts.
[00:24:55] Tom Bartley: Well I was just going to say, just as in every other sacred book, I would say there are lots of different interpretations on those principles and stories that are shared.
[00:25:04] Tom Bartley: But nevertheless, yeah, I think the Bible certainly seems to be the one for Christianity. That seems to be the basis for all these different interpretations.
[00:25:12] Staci Bartley: Yeah. So if we look to the New Testament, this is where we start to hear the stories of the arrival, the teachings, the death, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
[00:25:21] Staci Bartley: And it began to invalidate. And a lot of people don't know this, but if we look at the Jews. And the ideas of Jesus that came into the conversation historically. What we find is that the Jews believed they were the chosen people. And Jesus brought in this idea that we are all brothers and sisters, that we are all the chosen people.
[00:25:45] Staci Bartley: And we were all children of God. So early Christianity began a new social order. That was quite frankly upsetting to the Jews. We can all wrap our heads around that. Until I started studying history. That was never something I had even considered. I always wondered why it was that the Sadducees and the Pharisees were at odds.
[00:26:11] Staci Bartley: And why it is they put Jesus to death? But you start to explore some of these ideas and they, oh my gosh, that makes sense. Right. They felt very threatened. And the reason why this becomes important is early Christianity was of the ideal that we want to create heaven right here on earth. And we're going to renounce marriage and we're going to be among the angels.
[00:26:32] Staci Bartley: We're going to imitate the angels. And that is the way to a good life. And heaven. There were no husbands or wives, no mothers or fathers or no ancestral worship, no blood ties, no blood vengeance, no passion, no envy. And most importantly, no sex. So this was the ideal. It was kind of a utopian idea of this is how we're going to make the world in which you live a better place.
[00:27:03] Staci Bartley: And so now we can maybe start to understand where Catholicism has a role where we renounce sex, intimacy, marriage as the ideal. And we reach for something bigger and better in our own lives. We can also understand that, in the Jewish religion, marriage is like the most sanctified place of all.
[00:27:28] Staci Bartley: Like, you couldn't even be a priest in the Jewish religion if you weren't married. And so you can start to see some of the opposition that would play out in these ideals. Right. The Jews and the Christians. Did you have something you wanted to say? No. Okay. Okay. Fascinating. So this new Christianity idea became the new human paradigm.
[00:27:48] Staci Bartley: It was, it was, as it was taught through Christ's example. Which is celibacy fellowship, absolute purity. And those were the highest of priorities here. The rejection of sexuality and marriage was a big change from the old Testament, that belief of the Jews. So Hebrew society, as I said, it holds merit as the highest, most appropriate ideal.
[00:28:13] Staci Bartley: So securing a place in heaven became our motivation. And that was more important than any social arrangements because marriage was not necessary. If one wanted to live among the angels.
[00:28:25] Tom Bartley: Makes sense of if you're following the literal interpretation.
[00:28:30] Staci Bartley: So whenever modern-day religious conservatives get nostalgic on holy matrimony and the sacred traditions of marriage that reached back into the history uninterrupted for thousands of years.
[00:28:43] Staci Bartley: What they may not realize is that this is based on the Sadducees, rather than the spiritual ideas of the Pharisees, which Jesus subscribed to. Christianity in its origins simply did not share that deep and consistent historical reference towards matrimony did not exist. And I remember in my own place. Oh, my goodness.
[00:29:10] Staci Bartley: Not only do we marry for time and all eternity, as I had said, but that thought also gave me a tremendous amount of grace to begin exploring further that maybe I didn't screw this whole thing up. That maybe, there were some other answers that I just hadn't uncovered yet. And I could take a breath and sigh and not feel so guilty and shameful.
[00:29:34] Tom Bartley: I bet. So, yeah. I mean, and again, this is the intention of this chapter, right? Correct me if I'm wrong, you said I've got to get some context and share this with others, that, that I would sense. And it's what a lot of our clients that come in and work with us. Right. Or they're navigating these same types of issues.
[00:29:50] Tom Bartley: Yeah.
[00:29:50] Staci Bartley: Yeah. So you might notice that there's a huge large gap in the narrative. Like if marriage was seen as a distraction from worldly projects and early Christianity, then how did we come to embrace what it is we believe to be true about marriage today. And so it's this history and unfolds many early Christians actually rejected the call to celibacy.
[00:30:13] Staci Bartley: And instead of doing it through any guise of belief system, they would simply marry in their villages and in their homes. And their marriage was very much just any ordinary day and they would proclaim themselves to be married and thus that's what it had become. Also, especially in Western civilization, you know, divorce existed too.
[00:30:34] Staci Bartley: Even in the 10th century, it's interesting to note that women in Europe had more rights to assets and property and the claiming of their children than they would have seven centuries later in Puritan America. Right? No. Right. Like women in the 10th century had much more rights legally than women in, in the seventh, seventh centuries, later in Puritan America.
[00:30:59] Staci Bartley: And this is because marriage became a civil convention. People lived in cities and villages rather than trying to make up settlements, be in the wild, wild west, and Western civilization. And I just want to note here, that originally marriage and the accumulation of a clan meant you were safe.
[00:31:23] Staci Bartley: And so we would go from being families to being clans to being tribes. And eventually, that turned into dynasties and those dynasties went to war. And there were a lot of like religious wars as well as genocide. That was the outcrop of those wars. And just, just interesting to note. So in reality, in early Western civilization, marriage became a business arrangement.
[00:31:49] Staci Bartley: Love had nothing to do with it. In fact, the most important business arrangement was going to be who it is you married and how that impacted your family, your legacy, your clan, your tribe, and this arrangement would be one of the most important arrangements that you would ever make. So landing a good spouse is kind of equivalent to like getting into a good college or ensuring your tenure.
[00:32:15] Staci Bartley: Like it was a big deal and the family got involved in arranging these types of things. So whatever social class or status that we had would continue to be enjoyed. And if you could marry up, whoa, wow. Ever heard of the Cinderella story, right? That's an example of how important this business arrangement had become. And the eternity of marriage it's important to note the eternal marriage concept that came about in 1215 during the reign of Pope innocent, the third. And how this happened is he declared that divorce was illegal under the Catholic doctrine. And the reason behind it had little to do with any kind of an analysis of spirit or we're reaching for being one with God.
[00:33:09] Staci Bartley: In fact, it was actually wanting to keep track of the wealth. Which is sobering. This idea actually became this, how it became spiritually and nostalgic was the contract vows that we say, and the two shall become as one. And what was instigated at this time was a little thing called coverture or the law of coverture, which is a French term for when a woman marries a man, she will then give over all of her legal rights.
[00:33:45] Staci Bartley: Her ability to sign contracts, to have access to land, property, and children. And the two shall become as one. That's where that comes from. Like, oh my goodness. Now divorce is illegal at this point in time. And so in combination with the law of coverture, when a man takes a woman or a woman takes a man, she signs over all of her legal rights and access to societal norms and becomes as one. She then takes on the name of her husband. And that's where all of this comes from. And just a reminder that that happened in 1215. In 1215. Now think about how pervasive these ideas are even today.
[00:34:29] Tom Bartley: Well, and I could also say what it makes sense to see the opposition. Strong opposition in some areas and some belief systems.
[00:34:38] Staci Bartley: You mean because of women's rights and...
[00:34:40] Tom Bartley: Yes, and, and, and the evolution, you know, monetarily. Many times, you know, the women will outearn the man and, you know, I mean, yeah, I could, it just, wow. All of a sudden, just a rush of, oh my goodness, you can see why that one's going to probably be challenged. Mightily.
[00:34:58] Tom Bartley: In certain places.
[00:34:59] Staci Bartley: For sure. And now around this same time in 1215, excuse me, girls that were born in wealthy families were controlled as a means of managing the wealth for the family. So if you had a daughter that was going to marry another family, like that's a big problem. We got to make sure that this goes right.
[00:35:16] Staci Bartley: Right. And this law of coverture was the political manifestation of this control. And so this became something that, okay, we don't have any risk here or liability here when my daughter marries this other family because they become as that family with their properties and their rights. And it has no impact on our family and our rights and responsibilities and liabilities.
[00:35:41] Staci Bartley: And so you start to see this became something that was adopted very, very fast. Throughout Europe as well. And even into Western civilization here where we are in the United States of America. So coverture is the belief that a woman's individual civil existence is erased the moment that she marries. Just to put some context around this, this includes the erasing of legal rights.
[00:36:05] Staci Bartley: To her children, to the signing of any legal obligations, right? There might be a little bit of an upside. Like you could never come after a woman for not paying the mortgage or violating the laws of the land. But essentially this puts her in a place where she has no rights and she takes on the man's last name.
[00:36:24] Staci Bartley: And then the marriage vows become thus he and she become one is a direct reflection of this law of coverture. And this is the case until death does us part. And that's where that also comes from. Coverture combined with the new anti-divorce policies of the churches, how marriage became an institution of eternal life, right?
[00:36:49] Staci Bartley: Eternal existence and that death do us part became very, very important. And we buy off on it emotionally without realizing what we're committing to legally. Divorce remained, it's interesting to note, divorce remained illegal throughout Europe until the 16th century. So this is six centuries later when Henry the eighth overturned it and created the first Protestant sect of Christianity.
[00:37:20] Staci Bartley: So now continental kingdoms, this is where kind of the Christian crusades come into play. They subscribed to the Catholic doctrine and fought long and hard to restore England. But the failure happened in 1586 when actually his law prevailed. I want you to also note that in Western civilization, the law of coverture continued.
[00:37:46] Staci Bartley: We continued to wrestle with what is the role of a man and a woman and the United States of America. This is interesting. Like this always takes my breath away, even when I'm going to say it in this moment, the law of coverture continued and prevailed in Western civilization... take a guess in your mind.
[00:38:08] Tom Bartley: This one blew me away.
[00:38:09] Staci Bartley: Yeah. He knows the answer, but just as our listeners, how long do you think it took?
[00:38:14] Tom Bartley: So specifically in the United States.
[00:38:15] Staci Bartley: Yeah. Well, and we're talking like 15 century, right? I mean, and remember this was created in like the 12th century. So now we're all these centuries later. It wasn't overturned finally in the United States of America, all 50 states until 1975.
[00:38:34] Staci Bartley: Like 1975.
[00:38:36] Tom Bartley: Specific to what part?
[00:38:37] Staci Bartley: The state of Connecticut was the last one to allow women to open up bank accounts and sign legal contracts without the permission of their husbands. Now, Tom, that's in our lifetime or like, yeah, like 1975, like that's wild. So just, just think about what we've just talked about.
[00:38:59] Staci Bartley: Think about all the many ways that marriage has transformed and changed over time and centuries right there. We've just traveled a lot of like ups and downs and morphing and transformation. Right? The entity of marriage has become many, many things in just this short conversation and review of history that we've shared with you today.
[00:39:23] Staci Bartley: And it's changed in my life dramatically in the short 50, soon to be eight years, that I've been alive on the planet. I've seen tremendous change around these ideas of marriage and, and just highlight for many of us right. In 1967, that was when interracial marriage became legal. And what about same-sex marriage?
[00:39:47] Staci Bartley: Well, that's only been since 2010. Right. That's a very new conversation and idea. 12 years. Yeah. And what about the idea of not marrying at all? That is a very new idea. That is a very new idea. And yet we have more couples living unmarried and having children out of wedlock than ever before in history happening. That's happening right now.
[00:40:17] Staci Bartley: Like, there is no marriage that needs to happen. If we want to have, life and build a family together, there are many, many couples that are saying, nope, not for me. And so, you know, this causes me to look back over my own life, and I was raised and born in 1964. And when I was raised as a young woman, I remember serving breakfast to my brothers.
[00:40:41] Staci Bartley: Like I remember being in charge of keeping the house and not being allowed to work out in the yard. I also remember my grandmother not using her own given name of Arvilla, but using her husband's name, Mrs. Ray Perry Greenwood. I also note that my mom fell in love with somebody who was outside of her social class.
[00:41:05] Staci Bartley: Her family was very wealthy and very prominent politically, right. And communally in the state of Utah. He was the mayor of a little town called Murray. And when his daughter fooled around and fell in love with a simple farm boy from Riverson, that was a problem. That was a really big problem. And there was much to do about that.
[00:41:29] Staci Bartley: And so these conversations prevail today, they really do. They are on our minds today and yet we have no idea where they come from.
[00:41:40] Tom Bartley: Yeah. And again, I, my sense is there's, there's great, even just going through this conversation and preparing for the show there, there's great appreciation. As you said, babe, and also giving ourselves some, some grace and understanding that this institution that we call marriage, you know, we, we think it's a set it and forget it.
[00:41:59] Tom Bartley: You know, it's been the same way, you know, you know, for our however long, you know, we've been practicing it. And nothing could be further from the truth. So I think that's very good news. Meaning this institution takes on the societal beliefs and evolutions, you know, that happens. And Staci just shared some very significant ones.
[00:42:17] Tom Bartley: So my sense is it's going to continue to do so. And then also it's going to also have some people like what's happening now. Percentage really. And by the numbers are choosing not even to participate.
[00:42:28] Staci Bartley: Absolutely. And, and, and as I look back, you know, I was an oddball because my father died when I was really young and like 1970. And I was the only person on the block who didn't have a mom at home. She was at work.
[00:42:43] Staci Bartley: Everybody else's mom was home. Mine wasn't and I'll never forget being at a friend's house. And, you know, because my mom worked, we had breakfast and dinner together which was very common at that point in time in history as well, traditionally. And I remember my friend's mom telling me that I needed to go home for lunch.
[00:43:01] Staci Bartley: And I looked at her with all the innocence of a child and saying once, like, what's lunch, I don't even know what lunch is. And she was horrified that this child that lived on the block didn't know what lunch was. Because, you know, what kind of a mother would not feed their child lunch? Was where she was coming from without realizing it, yeah, we didn't have lunch because there was nobody there to prepare lunch.
[00:43:26] Staci Bartley: And so lunch didn't exist in my life. Also what didn't exist, is stepfamilies, that word. Also, what didn't exist as a single-parent household. Like, I didn't know anybody in my community that was divorced, did you? Yeah, it just, it just, it just didn't exist. It didn't happen.
[00:43:45] Tom Bartley: Certainly existed, but it wasn't talked about. It existed, but it was not talked about.
[00:43:49] Staci Bartley: Very well said.
[00:43:50] Staci Bartley: Absolutely. And so, you know, oft times my mom would get angry that people didn't realize she needed more help than she needed, you know. Especially in our church and the community that we grew up in. And, and then she would say, gosh, I guess that's a good thing. I think I can handle it all by myself where everybody else had a two-parent family.
[00:44:09] Staci Bartley: Right.
[00:44:10] Tom Bartley: So as we land this heart of the matter, Mrs. Bartley, what do we want? What are some takeaways for our listeners, because my sense is we've shaken, we've stirred the soup pretty significantly here. So what would you say would be, some helpful takeaways as we start to land this and take a short break?
[00:44:26] Staci Bartley: Well, the reality is, marriage, it, it morphs and changes over time as culture, society, ideas, beliefs, perspectives change. And this is why the institution of marriage has survived thousands and thousands of years because indeed it does change. I always have the joke that you know about the time marriage was going to take a significant nosedive between heterosexual couples, the gays rushed in to save the day saying no, no, no, no.
[00:44:53] Staci Bartley: I want to be married. I want to be married. Don't count me out. I want these rights and I want you to look at it's the legal rights right now that we want from marriage. In fact, you know, if we are in the spirit of full disclosure, that's the reason why you and I got married. It wasn't because we thought it was going to give our relationship anything that I didn't already have. In fact, I declared to Tom, I don't want you to be here out of obligation.
[00:45:16] Staci Bartley: I want you to be here in this relationship with me because you want to be here. And that's it. That's the long and short of it because I had already lived marriage of obligation and that didn't go so right. So I wanted a different kind of relationship. I wanted a relationship based on love and respect and desire.
[00:45:35] Tom Bartley: And interestingly enough, to be fully transparent. A marriage of obligation, as the statistics will tell us, have better long-term results then, and then a marriage of love.
[00:45:45] Tom Bartley: Is that correct?
[00:45:45] Staci Bartley: Yes, because you have the emotional shame and guilt and obligation that keeps you in it, even though, you know, in many, many ways that's not working for you. So contrary to popular belief, a marriage that is built on the ideals of obligation lasts longer than those that are built on love.
[00:46:05] Staci Bartley: Interesting. Who knew. That obligation was going to snuff out the ideals that we hold today. It happens.
[00:46:13] Tom Bartley: But don't, don't fret, not all is lost. This story will continue. And I would say what it points to is, you know, what if you've listened to us for any period of time is a great relationship. Number one, the rules that apply are the rules between the people involved. Number two, it's not a set it, forget it experience. If you want to have a great relationship, then we have to continue to learn and grow. Develop new skills and practice those because who we are when we got married 10, 15, 20 years later, we're nowhere near that same person. So it's a very, very dynamic process and it requires the approach. My, our experience would tell us that.
[00:46:48] Staci Bartley: Absolutely. So I know I've given you a lot to think about, and if you need help and support with us, reach out to us, right? But let this kind of stir up some new ideas in you. I'm hopeful that this will give you some grace and just, oh, wow, I never knew. And just let that set in.
[00:47:05] Staci Bartley: We're going to take a quick break and we're going to come back and have some fun, right. Because I think we all need to kind of step into that place. We'll be right back.
[00:47:16] Staci Bartley: Hey babe, did you know that the average couple spends only two hours a day with each other? And the majority of that time is spent eating, watching TV, and surfing social media rather than connecting with each other. And if children are involved, my gosh, it's even less time.
[00:47:30] Tom Bartley: I know babe. That's why you created our Conversation Cards For Connection because they're the perfect conversation starter.
[00:47:35] Tom Bartley: So the next time you're sitting on the couch, rather than turning on the TV or grabbing your phone, pull out a card and get ready for some good old-fashioned laughter and loving connection.
[00:47:43] Staci Bartley: Yeah and you can get your cards at stacibartley.com.
[00:47:45] Announcer: Real people, real life, real radio alternative talk 1150.
[00:47:50] Tom Bartley: Tom and Staci Bartley, we are happy to be here and we're going to step right into follow the fun.
[00:47:55] Staci Bartley: Yes. And, and by the way, if you want to read more about this, I would encourage you to pick up our book and you can do that by essentially getting on a list to be notified when the book is live and available for purchase.
[00:48:08] Staci Bartley: Actually, we're going to give it away for free for several days. So don't miss that opportunity and you can do that by going to our website and getting on our book list. And you can do that by, well, you can find it on our website.
[00:48:20] Tom Bartley: You can go right to the URL lifetimeoflove.me.
[00:48:25] Staci Bartley: So as promised, we always do the fun.
[00:48:27] Tom Bartley: What are we, what are we doing this weekend?
[00:48:30] Staci Bartley: What I want you to do, or, or maybe plan a weekend where you can do this as plan a room service weekend in your home. Like, pretend like you've gone to a luxurious resort, right. And you're gonna stay in for the day or a couple of days. You're going to actually declare this is a do not disturb weekend. And you're going to turn off your phones or other electronic devices.
[00:48:51] Staci Bartley: You're going to purchase yourself a couple of luxurious robes to just kind of lounge around in right. Those white cotton Terry cloth robes that are kind of really wonderful and soft, right. You're with me? You're going to stock the bar with whatever favorite beverages you deem appropriate. I think ours would probably be full of wine, but some of you might like some favorite cocktails or mocktails, right?
[00:49:17] Staci Bartley: Whatever lights you up. So make sure you have your favorite beverages on hand. You're going to order door dash for all of your meals. Going to come right to your, your door. Just like room service does. And don't forget the gourmet chocolates, which are one of my favorites. You're going to settle in and stream your favorite movies or shows, and throw a few card games or board games around if that's kind of your thing.
[00:49:42] Staci Bartley: Hotel LA Homa is a great place to be. So create one in your own life. I want you to know you have the power to do that and pretend like you're at a wonderful luxury hotel.
[00:49:55] Staci Bartley: And, you know, I mean, if you wanted to get involved in the whole boat, I mean, I didn't get into the bubble baths and the, you know, the oils and all the incredible things that are available there too.
[00:50:03] Staci Bartley: But come on, I hope that I've stimulated your imagination and you can take it to a whole new place. If you need to get on our fun list, I'm going to encourage you to do that as well. We do giveaways and we have fun ideas that are streaming out consistently throughout our emails. So get on our fun list and get inspired to make more fun happen in your relationships today.
[00:50:26] Staci Bartley: So as we switch gears, I always provide you with a song. And the reason why I create music and I remind you of this every time we have this conversation is because I want you to feel. We've just done a lot of like logical thinking, exploring history and marriage, et cetera today. We have very logical conversations through the heart of the matter, but then I want you to turn on some music and I want you to feel the episode.
[00:50:50] Staci Bartley: I want you to get into the essence of what it is we are teaching you. And engage a different part of yourself. And that's what music is so incredibly good for. Now I'm not going to lie. Today's possibility for a song kind of challenged me. Right? Like what do you pick when you're talking about the history of marriage?
[00:51:08] Staci Bartley: And what I came up with was a wonderful historic song for me actually. When I was going through things in the nineties about, oh gosh, I think I'm going to have to end my second relationship, that of eternal marriage. Oh my gosh. How am I going to go about this? Toni Braxton came to mind and her song, it's just another last sad love song.
[00:51:28] Staci Bartley: And the reason why I thought this would be appropriate for our conversation today, is until we start to explore some of the conversations and beliefs and where they come from. It really is kind of just another sad story. Another sad conversation about where we felt like we got it wrong, or did it wrong.
[00:51:46] Staci Bartley: And rather than let that impress upon us, the intensity of passing that down to our children, generation after generation, what if we explored that sad story or that sad song. And instead, instead of it racking our hearts and our brains and our minds and not allowing us to progress and grow, we explored what it is we could do differently in that conversation.
[00:52:08] Staci Bartley: And so I hope that that's your takeaway from this song, right? Because until then our stories can really wreak havoc on who we believe ourselves to be, who we believe our families and our lovers to be. And it simply just does not have to be that way. Right. There are lots of new possibilities and, and hope and ways of carving up the story of relationship and marriage.
[00:52:32] Staci Bartley: That quite frankly, until now we haven't had the permission and the space to explore anything that might be possible. So enjoy it, listen to it. If you want to listen to all the songs, we have a Spotify playlist for you. And again, you can find that on our website as well.
[00:52:49] Tom Bartley: Absolutely. Yeah. We have got a song for every single podcast episode.
[00:52:54] Tom Bartley: That's all available, you know, on our website. So as we land this episode, number one, thank you so much for gifting us your most precious resource, which is time. If you know someone in your circle of influence, maybe they're struggling in their marriage or their relationship. Please share this with us. If you want to, you know, get on our list and take advantage of the special launch of our book, just please do so, you know, lifetimeoflove.me.
[00:53:18] Tom Bartley: Thanks so much to KKNW and Eric Rider, our engineer, and to you, Mrs. Bartley for creating this incredible book.
[00:53:25] Staci Bartley: Thank you, babe. And, you know, I'm just feeling inspired to really quickly put this wonderful quote in there. A little lifetime of love, of love, and life is a continual growth process, where the doors and windows of experience are always open to the wonder and magic that life offers. So to love is to risk. My friends, kind of sums it up doesn't it. Until we see you next time, it's been a pleasure to be here with you inside the Love Shack, but bye for now.
[00:54:03] Announcer: Thanks for joining us today in the love shack, we hope you came away with something that made your toes tingle. To learn more about everything you heard on today's show. Go to Stacibartley.com/podcast. Love the show? Help us spread the love by sharing the show with others.
[00:54:24] Announcer: Okay. Everybody time ago. We've got to close the doors to the love shack for this week. You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here. Come back next week though, and join us for another edition of love shack live with Tom & Staci Bartley.
We all inherit stories of love and marriage from our parents, friends, and society.
The problem is, these stories can often be unrealistic and create a lot of unnecessary pressure and panic when we get them "wrong."
This week in the Love Shack, we're going to take a look at the history of love and marriage to see how these stories have changed over time. We'll explore why it's important to question these stories and to create our own, based on our own unique experiences.
In this episode, we're going to explore how our concept of love and marriage is passed down to us from generation to generation, and how it often doesn’t match up with reality. The truth is, these stories can hold us back from finding our own happy endings.
This episode is sure to inspire! Learn how to break free from the norms and make your own love story.
- Get a new perspective on love and marriage
- Learn about the history of love and marriage
- Gain insight into how our stories can hold us back
- Start thinking about your own happy ending
So tune in and get inspired to create the relationship you've always wanted!
Links mentioned in show:
- Get on the book list so you can stay up to date here: lifetimeoflove.me
- How To Stop A Fight In 20-Seconds Or Less. Get Your Free Cheat Sheet Here.
- Relationship Check-up - tired of re-hashing your issues with your partner without making progress? Schedule your check-up today!
- Get on the fun list here.
- Check out our Love Shack Live Playlist for all the songs we play on the show.