At the Academy Awards on Sunday night, Ben Affleck was accepting the Best Picture Oscar for Argo when he looked over to his wife, Jennifer Garner, and said, “I want to thank my wife…I want to thank you for working on marriage for ten Christmases. It’s good, it is work, but it’s the best kind of work, and there’s no one I’d rather work with.”
Ben got a lot of grief for making this statement. I saw it for myself all over the Internet. It was awkward. It wasn’t the right place or time. Their marriage is in trouble! They are getting a divorce!
I, on the other hand, thought it was awesome and want to be among the first to thank him for his remark.
In my opinion it was the perfect venue for him to say such a thing. Hollywood is one big fairy-tale, complete with beautiful people and princess dresses, and millions of people were watching. I commend Ben for taking the opportunity to say that even with loads of money, good looks and an Oscar in his hand, that marriage is work. If it’s a struggle for them, what about those of us with financial problems, average appearance and no awards of which to speak?
If men and women didn’t enter into marriage with a white-picket fantasy and instead looked at it like it’s a job, maybe family dynamics wouldn’t get thrown out of whack because of the way the dishes are loaded in the dishwasher. Have you ever given a co-worker the silent treatment because they didn’t hang up their coat? No. So why would you act like that with your spouse?
Work can be fulfilling. There are a heck of a lot of people who LOVE their jobs, but they don’t just come in and sit at their desk and expect the work to be fulfilling. They put effort into it. They are passionate about it. They give and they get back.
I love my husband and I’m forever committed to our marriage, but it isn’t always easy. We both know it’s work and when everything falls into place as it can with any good project, it’s the most amazing partnership I’ve ever had. I don’t dread this job; I live for it.
It’s good, it is work, but it’s the best kind of work, and there’s no one I’d rather work with.
Thank you, Ben, for keeping it real.