American Love Stories
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Dialogue Excerpt: The effect of an absent father

Dialogue Excerpt: Is having bi-racial children a good idea?

The Opened Oyster

Our Daughter, Ourselves

East Meets West Meets Us

Love at first sight, blind to the future

I met my husband in an emergency room while he was doing a medical school rotation. I was being treated for a migraine headache. From twenty-five feet away and despite numerous interruptions, including my pain, our eyes locked, and we married a little over a year later.

I had a four-year-old son, and was struggling with a new area and a new business. We were both in our own worlds in terms of goals and life plans. Neither of us was willing or able to have a committed relationship. We were and are independent souls in search of modern day love, life and happiness. was love at first sight, or so it was for me. Not for my husband. He lamented over the years that my perception of this first meeting was skewed, because of my pain and the environment.

My future husband did not, does not care for children and never really got along with them. He was brought up on a farm with four siblings and various other foster children to help with the farm. He was taught to be driven and a hard worker.

I was brought up in the suburbs of Connecticut; slow and easy was my life. I grew up on Long Island Sound (on the beach) with one older sister. Sailing in the summer and beach days were our life. We vacationed in Maine.

The differences between my husband and me were immense, and as time went on, they became even worse. Not only did my husband not want to have any other children, the one I had was far and above more than he could handle. Any talk of bettering life for my/our son was met with difficulty and estrangement. But my love was true, and more children were not as important as true love, to me.

We moved from his home state to the state I grew up vacationing in. We both had good jobs in this city, our son would go to good schools, and we would be a family. Life was good, except for the ever-present fear my husband had that he would 'never be able to give me what I had growing up'.

For quite a few years we lived in what I term as 'disparaging bliss'. Be happy with what you have, want what is most important. These acquiescences to happiness were to be my downfall. I knew this with all my heart but was unable to control it. I later found out they were pitfalls in my sister's marriage, too. A product of our mother telling us to make your man happy at whatever cost.

Now my husband and I are almost loveless in our marriage. My son has gone off on his own life, my husband has had various affairs with other women, I have maintained my sense of caring and concern, but I have lost sight of love.

In the end, I know that I should have married someone with the same values as myself, same social class, same...everything. The chaos would be less, the wants would not be so varied. The lesson has been hard.

But of all the truths I have learned with love--love of children, self, work, friends and family--I know this best: If you do not suffer, even a little for it, it did not exist. It was merely a sunrise or sunset, something that happens every day, nothing special. But if you pour your heart and soul into these differences, you understand why you love, live, laugh and want to be happy. You understand why you make life so challenging, because there is nothing greater for us to achieve in this world than to realize the challenge of loving someone you did not create or who did not create you.

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