Friday, May 19, 2006

Not a rumor: McCartneys separate

It was no rumor, after all (or rather, no mere rumor). The McCartneys have split.

The speculation so far seems to revolve around the money angle: "McCartney Divorce Could Be Biggest in UK History."

And, once again, the photo of Paul accompanying the article is quite cruel. Shall I be cruel and reproduce it? Oh, okay; but only as an object lesson in a point I tried to make yesterday--do not, especially as you get older, allow photographs to be taken from below chin level:


Just to refresh your memory, here's Paul from a similar angle in happier days:


Reports are that the divorce is that somewhat rara avis, an amicable one. Sometimes divorces can be exactly that, and I hope this one ends up fitting the description by the time it's over. There's a young child involved, for starters.

There are also older children involved--or perhaps the word "offspring" would be more appropriate; they're certainly not kids--who are reported to have disliked Heather from the start.

I don't claim to have any special knowledge of the inner workings of the McCartney marriage--I barely know anything about its outer workings. But my guess is that, after a marriage as long and extraordinarily harmonious as McCartney's first one is reported to have been, change can come hard.

And of course, even though Paul is a fairly well-preserved almost-sixty-four, the age difference between Paul and Heather is profound. She's thirty-eight, which makes her approximately half his age and, more importantly, about the age of his children.

Remarriages involving stepchildren, small or grown up, can have extra difficulties. It stands to reason, especially when the children's loyalty to a first spouse is profound, which is often (and understandably so) the case. One would think that if the children are grown up the path is eased (and this is ordinarily very true), but having a stepparent of one's own age is a special case that can be experienced as unbalancing.

Of course, it's all sheer speculation on my part as to the factors that may have contributed to the breakup. The only ones who know the true story of a marriage are the participants, and much of the time even they don't know a whole lot. The recent divorce rate, often quoted as one in two, actually isn't quite that high, but it's high enough, with the US leading at 44% and the UK following close on its heels. So perhaps Paul is simply typical of our times: he's 1 for 2 so far.

2 Comments:

At 3:58 PM, May 19, 2006, Blogger MikeZ said...

"Reports are that the divorce is that somewhat rara avis, an amicable one."

I tend not to follow celebrity divorces (for one thing, too many, too little time), but my thought is that $300 million buys a lot of amicability.

 
At 9:12 PM, May 19, 2006, Blogger chuck said...

But my guess is that, after a marriage as long and extraordinarily harmonious as McCartney's first one is reported to have been, change can come hard.

Certainly true. My uncle had a similar first marriage and sometime after his first wife died, he remarried. He was 71 or 72, his new wife in her early twenties. It wasn't a happy marriage and ended in divorce. But he did end up with three kids in the bargain. It is a curious thing to visit a man of 89 and spend most of the time talking to his teenage children.

 

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