Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person

This article by Alain de Botton has been widely circulated this week, and I've heard everything from "Nonsense!" to "I found it really comforting" to "See, everyone settles" from my girlfriends. I think he's right that we have to let go of romanticism a little to face the reality that relationships and marriage aren't always fun -- that's obvious, isn't it? But I'm not sure I like the idea of "accommodating ourselves to wrongness," nor am I convinced that such accommodation is the equivalent of "striving always to adopt a more forgiving, humorous, and kindly perspective." As always, I'm interested in your thoughts.

"The person who is best suited to us is not the person who shares our every taste (he or she doesn’t exist), but the person who can negotiate differences in taste intelligently — the person who is good at disagreement. Rather than some notional idea of perfect complementarity, it is the capacity to tolerate differences with generosity that is the true marker of the “not overly wrong” person. Compatibility is an achievement of love; it must not be its precondition."

Refining Truths

From Adrienne Rich in On Lies, Secrets, and Silence:

"An honorable human relationship — that is, one in which two people have the right to use the word “love” — is a process, delicate, violent, often terrifying to both persons involved, a process of refining the truths they can tell each other. It is important to do this because it breaks down human self-delusion and isolation. It is important to do this because in doing so we do justice to our own complexity. It is important to do this because we can count on so few people to go that hard way with us."