‘You Married The Wrong Woman’

You married the wrong woman. And then you had children with her.

For years, you’ve been going to see a marriage counselor in the hope that she could provide you two with the tools you needed to cope with the relationship.

Now you’re beginning to see. The years you spent in your seated practice didn’t help you ask and answer the questions, “Whom shall I love? How shall I discern? And what does it mean to love?” You’re beginning to see that seated practice can’t, on its own, enable you to inquire and deliberate. To do this is to enter more fully into discourse, that is,reasoned discourse coming from an existential place.

The painful lesson, though, is still to be felt. To see fully: I married the wrong person, and I’ve been deceiving myself into believing that I’m ‘confused about the relationship.’ The truth is that I haven’t been ‘confused‘ for quite a while. What’s worse, I’ve deceived myself about the fact that I married the wrong person by going through years of marriage counseling. I unsaw and, almost in the same breath, I hid what I unsaw. Now I cannot unsee.

This is Socratic philosophy, and it means not just this but surely at least this: examining closely our blindspots, illusions, and self-deceptions as well as the second-order deceptions about our self-deceptions. Closely, carefully, with gentleness, and also, yes, with persistence.

The pain, my friend, is still to come. I hear ya. In waves upon waves upon waves. No, don’t ask yet, “Now what?” That’s a slippery, dangerous, impatient question. Rather, be honest with yourself: go back to the pain and abide there for a while.