As a newlywed, I get a lot of marriage advice, both from other people and from books I read and a particular radio program I listen to (www.markgungorshow.com). I sift through all this advice and decide what to apply to my marriage and what to ignore; most of the advice I apply in one way or another, one situation or another. Because of all the good advice and because of a little hard work, I believe that my husband and I have a very good marriage. Now, before you burst out laughing, readers, and make fun of me because "I'm still a newlywed, how would I know what a good marriage is?" and "I haven't been married long enough to have to deal with any big problems that will really test the mettle of my marriage", consider a different aspect. I think that the mettle of a marriage is tested in the boring, day-to-day life that one person spends with the other. If two people can't get along and be nice and polite and kind to each other on a day-to-day basis, there's little chance that they'll survive when a real crisis hits. If they lose respect for one another and treat each other like crap, a big problem (such as financial difficulties or ruin, death of a family member or child, decision to move to another state, etc.) will only tear them farther apart. See, a relationship is built (or destroyed) every day, it isn't built or destroyed when a crisis hits.
And that's why I say that I believe my husband and I have a good marriage. We're not only lovers but also best friends. We respect each other, we're kind to each other (even when it's difficult to be), we work through our little problems, and we do our best to fight together, against the world, instead of fighting with each other. I know that when a real crisis hits, we're going to make it through and be okay because of the relationship we're building today and tomorrow and because I know he's on my side and I'm on his.
There is, of course, exceptions to this. You hear of couples who, when a crisis hits, it draws them back together after being emotionally damaging to each other for months or years. But these cases are rare. If you see your spouse as the "enemy" in a little spat today, what makes you think you'll see him/her as the "good guy" tomorrow when your child is hit by a car and instantly killed or when he/she gets a job offer in another state and wants to go but you refuse to leave your home and family?
Now obviously, every couple has their difficulties, every couple has fights. I'm not by any means saying you should live in a dream-like state of nirvana. But keep in mind what's at stake here. I know if I don't work at my marriage, if I treat my husband like crap when I don't feel like being nice, if I'm rude and spiteful, that I'm slowing destroying my marriage and there'll be nothing left to get us through the tough times.
And that, dear readers, is my comment for the day. Think on it, will you?