Turning Missteps into Dance Steps

He reminisced over a stripper ex-girlfriend. She believed men could not be trusted. Neither believed in the sanctity of marriage. This was Phil and Karen Rios' marriage for 15 years. They married in Chicago in 1977 when Phil was 24 and Karen was 19. He had just finished serving in the Marine Corps -- the alternative to a jail sentence -- and Karen had just graduated high school. They both had "no idea what marriage is." Their relationship deteriorated as they let their upbringings shape their interactions.

Karen was an only child and loved a quiet household and alone time with Phil. Phil loved the camaraderie of his large family with cousins always around. He has so many cousins that the first time he saw Karen at a wedding party, he thought she was one of them. Once married, he reestablished friendships with his old street buddies. Many of them were married but had girlfriends they brought along to guys' nights out. That "confirmed the idea my mom ingrained in me to never trust men," Karen said.

[Read the rest of the article at WorldMag.com.]