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Getting unmarried in the Philippines is not purely a private affair.

Under our legal


system, marriage occupies a support much higher than an ordinary contract. While the
act of marriage is an act similar to entering a contract, the parties to a marriage do not
have, like the case to an ordinary contract, wide latitude or discretion to establish the
terms and conditions of their relationship. Indeed, unlike an ordinary contract, the
marriage is not subject to mutual resolution or termination if the parties no longer intend
to be bound by their agreement. Once married, the dissolubility of the union is subject to
state intervention and approval.

Article 15, Section 2 of the 1987 Constitution states that Marriage, as an inviolable
social institution, is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the State

The Constitutional view thus shows that marriage is a social institution secured form
violation and that the state is mandated to protect marriage. The state has a stake in the
inviolability of marriage because the constitution views marriage as the foundation of the
family. In turn, the family is viewed in the constitution as the foundation of the nation.

Following the Constitution, Article 1 of the Family Code of the Philippines echoes that of
the Constitution. Thus, Marriage is a special contract of permanent union between a
man and a woman entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of conjugal
and family life. It is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution whose
nature, consequences, and incidents are governed by law and not subject to stipulation,
except that marriage settlements may fix the property relations during the marriage
within the limits provided by this Code.

Permanent Union: Permanence is a categorical element of marriage. As a union,


marriage is insoluble once it is entered into validly by a qualified man and woman. Thus
it is that marriage is a covenant between a husband and wife, which is lasting,
persevering, continuous and stable during the lifetime of the spouses. On the other
hand, divorce says and affirms that marriage is but a temporary union subject to the
desire and design of either or both spouses. Precisely, the possibility of divorce is
categorically contrary to marriage as a permanent union.
Conjugal Life: Conjugal life is a constitutional feature of marriage. In other words, in
and during marriage, the spouses undergo sadness and delight, pains and joys,
successes and failures - together. This is the understanding and reality, the nature and
implication of a conjugal union, that is to say, a life of sharing the burdens and rewards,
the blessings and difficulties or married life. Divorce is thus anything but an affirmation
of conjugal life in the sense that marriage lasts only long as long as one or both the
husband and/or wife want it to be.
Family Life: Family Life is inherent to marriage. Father, mother, and child/children -
this is common tripod of marriage. Let it be well noted that the husband and wife as
spouses make marriage a Conjugal Life. It is their child/children that make them have
and live a family life. It is under the said reality of marriage that the children born there
from and therein, are given due importanceeven but under the thought that the first
casualty/victims of a broken marriage or divorce is nobody else than the child/children
born of a conjugal union.
Marriage is a free and deliberate choice of the man and woman concerned. But after
their marriage-in-fact, to get rid of their marriage is already beyond their merely personal
unilateral or bilateral decision. Otherwise, they should not get married all, even but
considering that the qualification of someone as married has immediate reference to his
or her status which does not come or go merely at the will of the husband and/or wife. In
more simple words, those who does not subscribe to the truth that marriage is
permanent as a conjugal and/or family living, should not get married at all. This is but
logical, but rational.