061 What Does A Celebrity’s Marital Woes Remind Us About Marriage?

It’s no laughing matter to see somebody’s marriage in tatters

After the news broke out about how Hong Kong’s most beloved Cantonpop diva, Sammi Cheng (鄭秀文) was cheated by her husband Andy Hui (許志安), who was caught on video canoodling with another woman, it quickly became the gossip in the office’s pantry today.

Andy apologises for his indiscretion at a press conference. Photo: Screenshot from YouTube.

A colleague X was saying, “I had watched the video very closely. It was that woman who made advances to Andy. Twenty times! Alas, how many men can resist that kind of advances from an attractive woman?”

Y retorted, “That woman is not attractive at all! Any woman who seduces another person’s husband is ugly.”

I laughed before retreating quickly from the scene. It’s safer to steer clear when women start talking about men’s infidelity.

Photo: WordPress Picture Library

I have never quite understood people’s interest in the extramarital affairs of celebrities. It happens all the time. And what has it got to do with us? Out of curiosity, I ran through the news reports and online chatter about the scandal. The more I read, the more I felt sorry for Sammi Cheng. After all, it is no laughing matter to see the marriage of another person in tatters.

Marriage is about lifelong learning of being together

The outrage from women, especially Sammy’s diehard fans is understandable. Sammi and Andy’s marriage was described by Hong Kong’s most famous actor-comedian Dayo Wong (黃子華) as “the fairy tale of fairy tales” for good reasons.

The couple had experienced twists and turns, highs and lows in their relationship for 20 years before they finally tied the knot in 2013. That was supposed to be the perfect ending to their love story. But now, it has turned into a disappointing tale of broken vows and betrayals. That’s a big blow of confidence to many people who believe in the sanctity of marriage.

Photo: WordPress Picture Library

An attractive and plucky friend PY shared her indignation on Facebook by borrowing a comment she read online.

“Look at all these celebrities! No matter how pretty, capable, faithful or virtuous they are, their husbands still cheat on them.

That goes to prove that there is nothing women can do to stop men from going astray.

Women should love ourselves more, make ourselves prettier and better so that we can easily find a better man if husbands dare to cheat on us!”

An extract of her post on Facebook

PY’s exhortation to wives to love themselves more is also a stern warning to cheating husbands who do not cherish their marriage. But one question emerges: Is marriage all about commitment?

Marriage should not be construed as a mere lifelong commitment. Rather, it is a lifelong learning about being together.

Marriage is continuous education

Marriage is continuous education. It educates people in ways that we never even notice. My eighty-two-year old mother has noticed positive changes in me since my marriage. She believes that the credits should all go to my wife.

My mom had always worried about my lack of prudence in the use of money.  When I was a school boy, she would be irked to find out that I had spend every cent of my pocket money without knowing where the money went. In contrast, my elder brother came home from school every day with a clear account of what he had spent on.

It was only until a couple of weeks ago that she was delighted when I did a double take on the restaurant bill and asked for a refund on the unused wet wipes. Mom laughed heartily, “Lucky for you, your wife succeeded where I had failed. It looks like you’re now the most prudent with money among your siblings.”

Come to think of it, that was indeed one of the many things I have learnt from my marriage. Like most married couples, we had our highs and lows in our marriage. Many difficulties were only revealed to us years later as precious learning in disguise.

In retrospect, it was the ability to keep learning in the most difficult circumstances that kept the marriage going. Marriage is a learning journey about love.

An extract of her post on Instagram

Sammi Cheng rightly called the incident “an important lesson in our marriage”. She penned her thoughts about marriage after two days of silence,

“Marriage is not just about having joy and company. It is also about learning to embrace and forgive each other’s mistakes.”

Love, kindness and forgiveness are vital in a marriage. It’s Good Friday. Let’s take a leaf out from the Bible:

“Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance”

William W K Tan

19 April 2019