'Why do people even get married?'

Introducing Dr Love, who solves your relationship riddles in a confusing digital age

Q. I keep trying to figure out why people get married and I can't think of a good reason.
A. A significant number of people do it for love, or what they think love is. Many do it for companionship, because they worry about getting old and lonely in cities like ours where the government doesn’t really care about senior citizens. Some do it because they want to tell their friends and family that they are committed to a life-long relationship as opposed to just a long-term one. Some do it because they want children, because they don’t think the world has enough people yet. Some do it for legal reasons, because they want to enter America and can’t do it unless they find an American citizen ready and willing to marry them. Some do it for financial security, because you can’t eat at Indigo Deli unless two people in your home earn a lot of money. Some do it because of religious beliefs, then do it a second, third or fourth time. Some do it because their families force them to, citing all of the reasons I have just listed. And, finally, some do it just because they want something to post on Facebook or Instagram, because that’s the kind of world we now live in.

Dr Love

Q. When is the right time for a couple to seek professional help with their relationship? I have a feeling my wife and I need it.
A. There are a number of signs. Preferring the television to a conversation with each other is one, as is spending more time with other people or at work, than with each other. There is also that nagging sense of unhappiness that doesn’t seem to go away, or waking up every morning feeling as if you’re stuck in a rut. All of this can be fixed, of course, but they are strong signs that all is not well. You should discuss this with your wife, too, to see if she feels the same way. If she does, it’s definitely time to bring in a professional.

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