The Marriage Junkie

Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree Curves.

While waiting for a meeting, I have a chance to talk to a colleague I haven’t spoken with in years. You’d never know by looking at her, but she’s a marriage junkie.

The Long-Awaited Honest-to-God Secret to Being Happy

When I first met her a decade or more ago, she was already on her third husband. When that marriage didn’t last, she  started  a relationship with a married man who took what she describes now as her best years. He repeatedly promised to leave his wife and marry her. He never did, and she got tired of waiting, dropped him, and was married to someone new in six months.

“Don’t wait too long to remarry,” she tells me.

To look at her, you’d never know that she’s my age or that she’s not  the Alpha female she tries so hard to be. She tells me how, like so many  women, she wasted her time with a married man and thinks she  could’ve  been with any number  of other men who were interested  in her.

She repeats  herself  frequently  in  this  conversation. She never says she was interested in any of the men who might have been interested in her, other men she might have married.

I don’t feel the same urgency  that she does and that she has all her life. It’s her nature not just to want to be married, but that she must be married.

She doesn’t regard a taking a mate as a wonderful experience or a deeper level of sharing or just having some- one to push her buttons and help her grow. A mate—any mate,  from  the  way  she  describes  her  personal  opinions—is necessary to check off that box for personal validation.

At first, I think I’ve misunderstood,  but she repeats herself, often with the same phrasing. It’s not so much the man that is important or being in love but being married.

I find her beliefs a little sad and a little disturbing. The woman who appears  to be so strong is so utterly  lost without a man. I can’t fathom her all-consuming  need to be married any more than she understands me.

She stands to leave, gathering her papers. “Don’t for- get what I told you,” she says softly on her way out the door. She points a long index finger at me. “Don’t wait too long to get remarried.”