The Secret to a Long, Happy Marriage?

My parents just celebrated their 41st anniversary. Think about that for a second: 41 YEARS of being married! To the same person!! (Embarrassing side note: last year on my blog I congratulated them on their 30th anniversary. Soon after my mom asked me, “How old is your brother?” Um, 39? Why is she asking ME? Ohhhh… I get it. Sorry, I inadvertently shaved a decade off their marriage. Math was never my strong suit.)

Anyway, I think we can all agree that being married for several decades is a major feat. There are some days I marvel at staying married to MY husband for 7 years. Like on days he calls me at 4:30pm and the kids are screaming and fighting and starving and I’m counting down the minutes till their dad gets home and then he says, “Oh, by the way…” and mentions a work happy hour he’s supposed to go to that night.

I remember on our honeymoon, there were several other newlywed couples at our resort and we all ended up at the same restaurant with some older married folks one night. Someone asked one of the older couples what their secret was for a long and happy marriage and the wife said it was about letting the little stuff go.

I should have asked her to define “little stuff.” Does that mean not flying into a rage when -– for the millionth time -- he leaves his muddy, sedan-sized sneakers in the entryway for you to trip over? Or does it mean overlooking his ineptitude at dishwasher-loading? (Very funny post on that subject here.)

So obviously, I’m still working on the “letting stuff go” thing. But I will note that the husband of that long-married couple said the secret to a happy marriage was that his wife was always right. I would say MY husband is still working on THAT one.

Just today he coerced our boys into agreeing with him that it was totally my fault we missed the exit for my brother’s house on the way to Easter brunch. It’s not enough that we drove 20 minutes out of our way? He had to get our 4yo to chime in, “Yeah! It’s all Mama’s fault!” Obviously, C. didn’t get the “Yes, dear” memo. Good thing he’s cute and makes cute kids.

I like to imagine that 34 years from now, MY sons will be asking me what the secret is to our long and happy marriage. I’ll tell them, “It’s that I am always right.”

QUESTION O’ THE WEEK: Speaking of marriage, who’s looking forward to the royal wedding this weekend? I don’t think I need to wake up that early to see it live, but I’ll certainly DVR it.


Angie Mizzell said...

I once saw a couple who had been married 50 years on Dr.Phil... they said their secret was not falling out of love at the same time. Wow. Sometimes,one spouse has to care enough-- or be willing to try hard enough - for both.

41 years!That's awesome.

Shannon @ AnchorMommy said...

Wow! Congrats to your parents!!!

Your husband pulls the old "by the way" on you too? Boy, I hate that. But yeah, trying to let that go...

Joyseelun said...

my parents celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary 2 weeks ago, and I'm about to celebrate my 2 yr wedding anni..exciting...i don't hope to be like my parents in their many years of marriage, but their lovingness (i know, made up word lol) towards each other influences me in the direction i'd want my marriage to be in :)

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