If there really was a holy grail of marriage, surely we would have found it by now?
People have been pondering how to stay in wedded bliss for decades and everyone from church leaders to Joan Collins has had their say on how to avoid a painful/costly divorce.
Just when you thought there was no other theory to throw light on the issue – and perhaps break-ups were solely down to the fact that humans are a fickle and selfish bunch – in rides a Family Division judge to say it’s all the fault of glossy celebrity magazines.
Sir Paul Coleridge has blamed our high divorce rate on what he calls the Hello magazine approach to marriage.
He’s set up the Marriage Foundation to lobby for family-friendly policies and, for that, I give him a pat on the back. But pointing the finger at the fantasy and frills on offer when you flick through a shiny rag is barking up the wrong tree.
Sir Paul reckons that the glamour and glitz spread throughout the pages of these magazines in glorious technicolour gives people a false idea of how hard marriage is.
But does anyone look to Katie Price or Chantelle Houghton for marriage guidance? You’re suffering from an epic case of delusion if you do.
Normal folk don’t think these pantomime shenanigans (Posh and Beck’s thrones, Price and Andre’s onion-shaped carriage) are even vaguely realistic.
I’ve never been to a wedding where the photos have featured a rainbow-coloured identity parade of soap stars and the bride has needed security.
Even if you get swept up looking at celebrity wedding photos, the post break-up interview that follows should hammer home the message that things don’t always end well.
Perhaps Sir Paul thinks we should swap Hello and OK! for 50 Things Every Woman Must Know About Keeping Her Man Happy.
But these 1950s guides to marriage were more unrealistic than any celebrity rag because they bashed women into thinking subservience was the only way to go.
I’d rather laugh at Kerry Katona in a tulle and lace monstrosity any day than fall for the idea that ironing shirts is the secret to a happy marriage.