Article 62

My Boyfriend Richard Chamberlain By Clara Ray (Part 2)

"Marriage? To begin with," Dick said, "any person who thinks of getting married must be able to analyse himself honestly and ask: ‘Am I ready for it?'"

"You've got to have a little stable spot within yourself which is always there, always to be counted on. Just as you can count on it when you pound your fist on a coffee table. It's solid wood. It's there. It's real.

"Marriage is a responsibility. That's not a new thought, but it doesn't hurt to remember it. Too many husbands and wives don't realise their obligations -they don't realise them before they've taken the step, and they don't realise them afterwards. So they end up in the divorce courts and with broken families. That's not for me!"

Dick went back to dwell on "stability."

"A person must ask himself, ‘Who am I?' I think that's a way of finding out whether you have what it takes for marriage. It's a question some people can answer early. They find out early.

"I've asked myself that question. I couldn't answer it, for a long time. I didn't know. Do you know why I didn't know? Because I'm just getting acquainted with myself.

"It must sound silly to say that I'm just getting acquainted with myself, but that's the absolute truth. It's a fascinating process. Now I'm beginning to feel a little unfriendly towards the person I am.

"I'd like my marriage," Dick went on, "to be a kind of live thing, full of animation and spirit. It should be the kind of marriage where my wife and I would take off on the spur of a moment for a desert island just for the heck of it -and have a ball.

"I'd want it to be as exciting as possible -but, when the spirit moved us, to have absolute tranquility. If my wife and I decided to read, we'd read. We'd read our own books and mind our own business then. But that doesn't mean we couldn't get excited about a book.

"What I'm trying to say is that I'd want a wife who felt the things that are important to me are just as important to her. And the feeling must be mutual. I would have to respect her feelings and sentiments about things, and share in her joy or sadness about matters that are close to her heart.

"It's so wonderful when you get a sudden, inspiring insight into something. It could be anything. That's a moment you want to burst out and tell someone. Certainly I would want to tell my wife.

"But just imagine what it's like when it falls on deaf ears -when you can't seem to reach that person.

"I would want everything about my marriage to be adventurous," continued Dick. "Take children for instance. I would want children, lots of them. My wife would have to want them, too. And both of us must look upon having children as an adventure.

"I didn't always feel this way," he admitted. "Success has changed me. It's a good change. I feel that I'm growing up, and that has made me look for a different kind of wife than I would have looked for -if I were looking -three years ago.

"Now, I want my wife to have directness, an openness, a maturity that I would have been afraid of three years ago.

"The girl for me has to be pretty, or course. She doesn't need the classic beauty of a younger Liz Taylor. She doesn't have to be physically perfect. She just has to add up to a pleasing sight. And she'd have to love show business -to be tolerant of its eccentricities."

Does Dick know such a girl?

"Clara Ray!" The answer came quickly. "Clara is like that. Clara is most of these things…."