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When love is not enough

By Nina Steele 

If like me, you watch the brilliant legal drama Suits, I suspect that you will remember the episode in which Rick Hoffman’s character Louis Litt, breaks up with his fiancée (played by Rachael Harris) because of their differing views on children. She doesn’t want any, while he definitely does. In fact as far as he is concerned, a relationship is not complete without children.

That Hoffman’s character has a traditional view of marriage is obvious, although to his credit, he does like strong women. He does however also strongly believe in the ideal of the nuclear family, so much so that his love for his fiancée was not enough to make him give up on his long held aspiration of becoming a father.

Like in a real life situation, He doesn’t give up without a fight, and uses the classic approach of trying to convince his fiancée to change her mind. A difficult proposition for a woman who has never felt the urge to procreate. At the end, both of them stuck to their guns, and the relationship ended.

Although this is not real life, the first thing you wonder, is how come the subject of children wasn’t brought up earlier on in the relationship? After all, isn’t that one of the most important discussions for a couple to have?

In 2014, singer Bryan Ferry’s marriage to his second wife Amanda Sheppard ended because she wanted children and he didn’t, as he already had four from his first marriage. Unlike the characters in Suits, the couple did discuss children early on in their relationship, and Bryan Ferry agreed for them to have a child together. He later changed his mind, which led to the divorce.

He said of their relationship at the time: “We so enjoyed each other’s company. Sometimes people just get on with each other and we did, rather well. She’s a wonderful girl and I could never think anything bad about her. She’s full of life, positive and a great lightness of spirit which complemented my more grave side. It was a great combination and it’s sad that we had to go our different way. We wanted different things, that’s really the phrase.”

At the end, even a strong bond wasn’t enough to save their marriage.

The decision whether or not to have children is one of the most important a couple will ever make. Ideally, no one should go into parenthood lightly. It is always sad to see a couple go their separate ways, but even worse is to have a child that someone within the relationship didn’t want in the first place.

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