An Inconvenient Truth
Al and Tipper Gore told the world yesterday that they’re divorcing, and the world immediately asked, “Who’s cheating?”
That thought never crossed my mind. I’m kind of worldly wise on the topic of cheating, and neither of them strikes me as the cheatin’ kind. Tipper seems like a good girl who just wouldn’t screw things up by fooling around. As for Al? Trees can’t cheat.
In a way, it’s sad that people automatically assume an affair has caused the split. But even sadder is the fact that after forty years together, their relationship ran its course.
At different milestones in my marriage, I often wondered if we’d made it over some imaginary hump. Once a couple got past the ten or fifteen year mark, I fantasized back then, they’d officially made it, had been kind of grandfathered in and immunized against divorce.
I also hoped that when a couple successfully weathered a tough storm, it guaranteed success for the rest of the marriage.
Of course, I was wrong. But how I wanted to believe things were that way. I wanted to believe, after my husband’s first affair, that my love and forgiveness were a kind of superglue that would bond us forever. But nothing in life is that way. The greatest bodybuilder in the world will lose his muscle if he stops working out. The best tennis player in the world today can lose to an unranked player tomorrow with the slightest loss in focus. And no marriage will ever stay happy and strong unless both parties work their asses off to keep it that way.
But here’s where I salute the Gores. As sad as the demise of a forty-year marriage is, it would be worse for them to live out their lives in misery. I hope Tipper meets someone not quite so boring as Al — although it will be hard to match the greatness of the man who supposedly invented in Internet.
And I hope Al meets a woman half as attractive to him as Mother Nature.