Marriage and Contract

People fall in love and get married or they marry for convenience, either theirs or their parents. Marriage is sealed with a contract according to laws where it was officiated. Whatever form, a marriage valid in the place where it was contracted is valid in the Philippines in general.

Marriage as defined by the Philippine Family Code, is a special contract of permanent union between a man and a woman entered into in accordance with law for establishment of conjugal and family life. It is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution whose nature, consequences, and incidents are governed by law and not subject to stipulation, except that marriage settlement may fix the property relations during the marriage within the limits provided by the Code.

The question is, why does it have to be permanent? Time changes many things and even the most romantic love is sometimes doomed to fail. In 2010, a partylist representative proposed a bill for “renewable marriage contract”, with validity of ten years. The questions were: what will be the marriage vows, “till expiration do us part”, what about the family and family relations and many other concerns.

In the same light, there are many psychological incapacity that were invented only to declare nullity of marriage, not that either one of the parties are really psychotic since they contract another marriage right after the declaration of nullity. It seems funny to think that psychologists would become richer by this insane determination of psychological incapacity. Why not make it a real contract with term, you chose how long can you stand to live with a person. Maybe, just maybe, having a term of contract would make the parties more sensitive to the needs of the other person, treat them better and as real partner, “katuwang sa buhay” as I fondly remember.

The Passionate Shepherd to His Love and The Nymphs Reply to the Shepherd, the poems on love and courtship that I learned in high school are examples of how in the fifteenth century a person can be so rational. These poems were written by men and so I cannot say that it was precisely how women felt and thought during those times. My other readings from the books of Jane Austen has taught me that women of whatever age tends to temper emotion with reason and some are not successful, while some do not even think rationally.

The Shepherd and the Nymph

“But could youth last and love still breed,
Had joys no date nor age no need,
Then these delights my mind might move
To live with thee and be thy love.” – Sir Walter Raleigh





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