How I Met Your Mother Series
After I watched how I met your mother, the series, I realized that the whole film refers to relationships’ topic. Everybody is affected by relationships regardless of their age in this movie. Actually, there are characters who love the friends of their parents. This can sound weird because there are communities which consider it archaic. However, it happens in this film severally. As such, I wonder how relationships are viewed by the Americans in regards to being a player, getting married and being single on the basis of the argument that is presented in this movie. I also wonder whether this movie affects the perspective of the people towards relationships and if yes, how.
Marriage is a passage rite and everybody aims at finding the right mate. Things seem to move swiftly after marriage and a couple might break up later. The rate of divorce is high in the US. This paper tries to explain whether a marriage relationship is affected by job occupation. Several breakups are witnessed in how I met your mother. Regardless of the character’s occupation, these breakups are caused by various reasons. After divorcing, most people opt to remain single. This raises the question of whether embracing this behavior is better or if it ought to be discouraged. Intelligently, this show highlights social dating scenes as well as the involved rules because every character is a representative of a personality within the society. This film uses sarcasm and stereotype in depicting the contemporary beliefs and behaviors that relate to relationships of the Americans.
I will start by outlining the perception that the American people have towards single people as well as their views about being single. To humanity, a family is very important. However, global cultures display different opinions regarding family. Most young people more so teenagers dream of having their own families in the future. However, this is not what always happens. Challenges and obstacles arise along the way changing their minds. Opportunities in life, more so careers have compelled women to remain single. Eventually, women have extended work beyond the domestic boundaries (Domenico & Jones, 2006). These prefer remaining single as a way of avoiding responsibilities which might hinder them from performing their duties at work effectively (Bella & Kay, 2008). In the past, women helped their husbands in maintaining their families. This kept them from seeking employment or becoming independent (Nivel & Gutek 1981).
The social class of a person in the society also influences being single. Most TV celebrities and icons have remained unmarried throughout their lives. Since they spend a lot of time developing their careers, they prefer staying alone. This is because if they get married they would have little or inadequate time for families. The marriage life of a person in America is largely determined by the social class. A person whose education level is high is skeptical about getting married to a woman who is illiterate. Individuals with good education might have high marriage standard as well as expect high emotional support level combined with personal fulfillment.
However, divorce is triggered by such high standards (Amato & Previti 2003). There are those who remain single because of dating and courtship periods’ frustration. For instance, in the series how I met your mother, Ted Mosby is a character who loved multiple girls but his relationships with them ended with breakups. His determination is to find a perfect mate. Despite doing everything he could to please them, every woman that he dates fails to meet the qualities that he needs in a woman. In a real life situation, a person can feel frustrated if this happens and opt to remain single. According to critics, singlehood depicts laziness because people remain single to avoid responsibilities. This might be true in some cases but there are circumstances that compel individuals to stay single.
Mayer notes that from the start of the United States, people have practiced and believed in monogamous relationships (2009). However, the contemporary world has men who practice “indirect polygamy” (Mayer, 2009). These men engage numerous ladies in short-term relationships while looking for a long-term girlfriend. “Indirect polygamy” is clearly depicted in how I met your mother by Barney Stinson. This character does not want to engage in a monogamous relationship. Instead, he wants to have sex with more women. He is called “ladies man” by most fans although to critics he is “a player”. No lady will be comfortable while dating this kind of a man because she is not sure whether he will stop this behavior after settling down. For this reason, some ladies opt to remain single.
Barney Stinson’s character is discouraged even by religion since it considers it unethical and immoral. Mayer notes that such a partner is for sexual relationships only since a potential spouse engages in an emotional relationship (2009). It is unfortunate that sexually active persons tend to be praised more by the society than the faithful ones. This is why this character is stereotyped by the film. Although the society considers this behavior immoral, it is being embraced and adopted by many people.
Before settling down in a marriage, a couple has to agree on several things. In America, a marriage is generally marked by a wedding during which friends and families are invited to serve as the engagement’s witnesses. There are people who may be uncomfortable with a church wedding. Therefore, they opt to have a legal wedding (Bella & Kay, 2008). This issue is contentious and it must be addressed by the involved parties. Lily and Marshall in how I met your mother are undecided on whether to have an outdoor wedding or an indoor wedding. Marshall prefers an indoor wedding that includes a band. Lily wants an outdoor wedding. This argument is very common among couples because couples always disagree about the kind of wedding to have. Having effective communication makes solving such disagreements possible.
In this film, Marshall discovers later that opening up and being honest with Lily is the best way of avoiding danger between them. Domenico and Jones note that there is a tendency of women to closely monitor their relationship and this enables them to discover problems early. Hence, they most likely initiate discussions with partners and this is not the case with men (2006). Contrary to this, men will most probably withdraw from relationship discussions. Perhaps, this is why men initiate most divorces (Thompson & Walker, 1991). As such, men should improve and show courage like Marshall. They should be open to their spouses to prevent relationship wrangles.
Although the movie depicts several social ills, marriage remains an important thing in any society. Women and men have varying agendas regarding marriage (Mayer, 2009). To most people, TV programs encourage bad behavior and immorality. Nevertheless, on analyzing how I met your mother, I have realized that the media seems to portray a positive change towards morals and values in the society. The only thing is that there are TV shows that use literature devices that include sarcasm in warning individuals against certain behaviors (Thomas, 2003). Films and movies have affected the way different things are perceived by the people because my perception of relationships changed when I watched how I met your mother.
Almost every character in this film spends time trying to find a perfect partner. This reflects the life of the Americans currently because people are always trying to find partners even on the internet. There are episodes that portray men as not showing respect for females. They have a tendency of mistreating them psychologically and emotionally. This program is a magnification of the problems that people encounter during courtship as well as how they solve them by staying single. My thought is that solving issues in a relationship by staying single is not wise since one can only raise a family by getting married and this way, a generation emerges. Failing to get married and subsequently have children means that human beings across the world will eventually be extinct. Therefore, relationship problems cannot be solved by staying single.
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Amato, P., & Preveti, D. (2003). People’s Reasons for Divorcing:Gender, Social Class, the Life Course, and Adjustment. Journal of family issues. 24(5), 602-626.
Bella, D., & Kay, E. (2008). Single women. Sociologists for women in society fact sheet. Retrieved from: http://belladepaulo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Single-Women-Fact-Sheet-11-1-08.pdf
Domenico, D., & Jones, K. (2006). Career aspirations of women in the 20th century.
Journal of career and technical education 22 (2), 1-7
Mayer, N. (2009) How I met your mother: stereotyping society? Retrieved from: http://voices.yahoo.com/how-met-mother-stereotyping-society-3304402.html?cat=39
Nieva, V. F., & Gutek, B. A. (1981). Women and work: A psychological perspective. New York: Praeger.
Thomas, K. (2013). How I met your mother “no questions asked” review: the one with robin’s other alter ego. Retrieved from: http://www.tv.com/shows/how-i-met-your-mother/community/post/how-i-met-your-mother-no-questions-asked-season-9-episode-7-review-138300129089/
Thompson, L., & Walker, A. J. (1991). Gender in families: Women and men in marriage,
work, and parenthood. In A. Booth (Ed.).Minneapolis, MN: National Council on Family Relations.