Sunday, August 26, 2007

Austen's Times

Leticia Velasquez wrote a beautiful review of "Becoming Jane", ( , which caused me to recruit a friend to go see it with me. It was well worth my time. After the movie, we were discussing the way young people of that time period were "trapped" by social circumstances.

I kept thinking about that, in relation to the freedom of courtship we have in modern times. The social mores of times past were not entirely a bad thing. Parents earnestly saught the best attachments they could for their children, for they hoped to give them the best life possible. They knew that the passion of youthful love was not enough to sustain a couple for a lifetime. They knew that partnerships based on friendship and commonality of background were more likely to blossom into a love that lasted. Therefore they demonstrated "tough love" in denying youths permission to marry into poverty or a "bad family".

Today we have the freedom to marry whomever we choose. As can be seen by the high divorce rates, society has shown that the majority of people are quite capable of entrapping themselves into a bad marriage. And although divorces are given quite freely, the relationship does not end there. Child custody battles and alimony can hold one hostage to circumstance for decades.

In the gradual shift from rigidity to liberty of movement, parents seem to be at a loss for words when they see their child may be making the wrong decision in choosing a mate. After all, it is "their life" - hence they may fear pushing the child away in making their opinions known.

It is time for parents to bring up their children in a courtship culture, rather than with a dating-just-for-fun atmosphere. "What do you wish for in your lifetime mate?" is a question that can be asked from early childhood. These children will then be asking themselves the same questions when interviewing future spouses on a first date - and save themselves many heartbreaks in the process.

"I always knew you", my husband recently said to me. I remember my mother telling me that somewhere God was preparing a husband for me and that she was praying for him. I know her prayers were answered.


Joanna said...

I can hardly wait to see this movie! I just love the writings of Jane Austin and am excited to see that there is a movie out there that has a positive message for young ladies today. P.S. You are GREAT!!!!!!!!

Leticia said...

Similar thoughts were running through my mind as I saw the movie. I have discussed how my husband, from El Salvador courted me, with my girls and told them what a serious business courtship is. While we are free to earn money, it can become it's own form of slavery, as we try to become super moms and fail to meet impossible expectations, missing out on our children's most precious moments.