I was reading a book the other day about the secrets to a successful, long-lasting and happy marriage.
It’s amazing that after centuries of people coming together in matrimony there are still, apparently, secrets that we do not know about on how to make our marriages happy and successful.
I read with some trepidation and curiosity in order to discover what else I have to learn on the subject.
It seems that the first steps in choosing a partner for life are the most important ones. Marriage is not to be entered into too lightly and one must be careful with whom we pledge to spend the rest of our lives – come sunshine, rain or snow. It is imperative at the outset to decide who will clear the path when the snow is feet deep and blocking your way out.
Love, mutual respect, patience and understanding are obviously very important in a marriage. But just as essential is the fact that one of the spouses should be slightly deaf – preferably the husband.
The choice of spouse is vital not only for reasons of compatibility, shared interests, hopes, values and aspirations. It seems that the occupation and profession of one’s partner plays a major role in the longevity and success of the union.
Statistics prove beyond doubt that archaeologists make the best marriage partners. The older you get the more interested they are in you.
It is of course inevitable that in any marriage arguments will occur sometimes out of the blue and on the most absurd and un-important subjects. The trick is not so much on how to win an argument; if this was at all possible, but to avoid getting into one in the first place.
It’s not a question of capitulating and giving way in the first instance, but choosing which argument is important enough to defend as a matter of principle and which is not worth losing privileges for.
The question of principles is worth dwelling on for a moment or two. Don’t just have one unbreakable principle which you will uphold at the cost of your marriage, happiness, and future livelihood. Be generous. Have plenty of principles; and if one doesn’t work out for you choose another one. No one who is anyone has ever succeeded by having just one principle.
The book also has a chapter about mutual interests and doing things together as a couple which both marriage partners can enjoy.
Now, doing heavy work together like changing the engine oil in the car, tuning the engine, changing the tires and other mechanical tasks may be ideal for certain couples; but personally I’d rather sit back and admire her handiwork and praise her every now and then. Besides, I hate it when the engine oil and dirt gets under my fingernails. It’s a devil of a job to clean when I’m at the manicurist.
In a chapter specifically for men, the book states that women like to be re-assured frequently that they are loved and cherished. Frequently the words “I love you” are not heard as often after the honeymoon, or are used as a pretext to wanting something, like watching the football on TV.
The book suggests that the husband writes down the words “I love you” on a piece of paper which the wife can refer to as often as needed in future. Laminating the piece of paper will ensure its durability, especially if it is the size of a credit card so it can be easily carried in one’s purse or handbag. Drawing a heart, or a flower, (before laminating), will also ensure a successful purpose.
So there you have it … a few secrets to a long, happy and successful marriage. Now where’s my dinner?