Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Love of His Life

I must tell you that I have a real problem with obituaries (and other pieces of writing) that describe someone as the "love of his (or her) life."  Unless you know for a fact that you two were destined, for all eternity, to be each others' soulmates (not likely!), AND actually do spend your entire lives together rather than with other people, this person is not (by my definition anyway) the love of your life.  . . .  A situation in which someone might possibly be called the love of one's life gets complicated in societies which permit divorce (i.e. most societies, hopefully).  Here's an example.  John and Mary get married.  They have two children, John Jr., and Mary Jr.  John and Mary later realize that they are (long story short) not compatible after all.  They divorce.  John later marries Beth.  Mary later marries Jim.  Many years later, John dies.  His obituary reads, "Beth was the love of his life."  How do you think John Jr. and Mary Jr. feel about this?  It's too bad that he married Mary and had two children with her before he realized that Beth was actually "the love of his life" !  There are plenty of other ways to say that you deeply love someone or spent X number of wonderful years with someone without saying that this person was "the love of my life."  OK, that's the end of my complaint.