The People's Perspective on Medicine

Show 1059: What Are the Sacred Cows of Marriage?

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What happens when sacred vows of marriage get replaced with sacred cows arrayed against divorce? How good are the arguments?
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Nearly half of all marriages end in divorce, if we are to believe the statistics. Despite that, there is significant social pressure on married couples to stay together, even though the relationship may be unraveling.

What Are the Sacred Cows?

Our guests examine the rationalizations the friends and family members often employ when a marriage starts to show some strain. They term these arguments sacred cows and show their inconsistencies and weaknesses.

What did you really agree to in your marriage contract? What happens if it needs to be renegotiated? Having a conversation about goals might be the best place to start if counseling seems wise.

This Week's Guests:

Astro and Danielle Teller are co-authors of Sacred Cows: The Truth about Divorce and Marriage.

Danielle Teller, MD, has held faculty positions at the University of Pittsburgh and Harvard University, where she investigated the origins of chronic lung disease and taught in the medical intensive care unit.

Astro Teller, PhD, is a computer scientist and entrepreneur who currently oversees X. X is part of Alphabet, the umbrella company that also owns Google. 

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Product Reviews
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JoyceChapel hill nc – December 08, 2016
Sacred cows

The one star comment above seemed to have little to do with what the authors were saying about sacred cows. The reviewer felt that the authors were arguing for a selfish, self centered, non-committed view of marriage and divorce. Not at all! No one is saying to hell with commitment or responsibility! I think by destroying the ‘sacred cows’ view of marriage one does not denigrate the institution of marriage. I have known others with viciously cruel divorces and those with loving productive divorces. The same can be said of marriages. The goal can be a life long loving relationship. But not everyone can achieve their goal. Just because someone does not get a Harvard PhD and create a Google does not mean they have failed. Neither does it mean that someone who has not stayed married for life has failed. Success is a bell curve. I’d take a few wonderful short term relationships over a miserable lifelong marriage any day. I do not see time as the goal, but the quality of each other’s lives. The authors present a healthy alternative perspective.

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Jerie WebsterVirginia – November 26, 2016
Sacred Cows

I cannot go along with the authors perspective at all. This is so typical of our society. If it doesn’t feel good for as long as I want it to, than dump it. Forget about commitment or responsibility. It’s all about ME! Haven’t we had enough of that? If a guy was not going to commit to me and our relationship before going into marriage, and try to make it work (yes, it does take effort) each and every day, I’d never marry him. If one takes the authors view, why even get married in the first place? Just move in together. Then you can just move out whenever you want. Why go through the hassle?? I agree that all couples should get marriage counselling before marriage. Take the time and effort to find out if you are compatible in life’s situations and on the same page with important issues in your life. This book is just another way to water down standards and remove any responsibility or guilt.

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