No, I don’t know these people. No, I can’t imagine they lead lives anything like mine. But there’s something universally painful about public divorce for married folk.
Okay, maybe not obvious sham marriages or quickie Hollywood couplings (Did anybody even know Scarlett Johansson and Ryan Reynolds were married before they announced their divorce?). But a 25-year union that has endured rumor, scandal, distance, spotlight and public office is pretty admirable. Not to mention four children. Without realizing it, their together-through-it-all was speaking to me: “If they can hang on through that, you can probably deal with his ignoring the dirty diaper.”
There’s also just the sheer duration. If a marriage can fall apart at 25 years — which, of course, happens all the time, but Shriver and Schwarzenegger have just reminded us of this fact — then celebrating our fifth or 10th or 15th anniversary is not an assurance that there will be a 20th, a 30th a 40th.
So though you don’t know it, Maria and Arnold, there are some of us out here in regular-people-ville who are not just rubber-necking on your personal wreck. We are actually sad for you.
How about you? Does this split mean anything to you?