In my opinion, the July 31 editorial, “Rise in single-member households reflects concerns about income,” has highlighted only one side of the problem. Today’s society has seen a manifold increase in our expectations and ambitions.
Although we profess to have simple enough tastes, claiming that if only we had a more sustainable society we would do this and that, we often forget that our forefathers got by with much less than we do and probably lived far happier and fulfilling lives.
It is a problem of urbanization with all its seductive trinkets, together with changing values.
Relationships have become more akin to a hunt for the idealized image to worship. We look for people who match our preconceived ideal, rather than people with an open mind who have qualities with which we could fall in love if we only took the time to discover them for ourselves.
It is an individualistic world, where we look for what we want rather than try to discover the good in what is already there around us. But if you ask someone about this, he or she is likely to insist that the focus is on the latter. That, too, is an idealistic image of what we wish to be rather than what actually is!
The editorial has put forward the premise that it’s the financial prospects of a partner that matter most. This would seem to contradict the notion of the idealistic image, but it is also true.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.
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