One thing I find myself thinking about from time to time is, how do people stay married? I don’t mean this as a “red flag” kind of thing or something, but more just a logistical, simple curiosity. Also because I feel like “in this day and age” there are a hell of a lot more divorces than there are long-time marriages, or perhaps I don’t see as many people really “fighting for their marriage” (and what does that even mean? And why would I be privy to that kind of private, intimate knowledge?).
Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I just haven’t been exposed to that many long-time marriages (and perhaps I’m also sensitive to it because in our first year of marriage, three of our friends got divorced). But it’s something I’ve always been a bit obsessed about knowing. How do they do that? How did they make it last? Did they ever want to get a divorce? What did/do they do to keep “the love alive” and stay together and be good partners to one another?
Well, luckily for me, a rabbit hole lead me to the “Making It Last” column on the New York Times website. It profiles couples who have been together 25 years or more and it asks them the typical questions: how did you meet, when did you know they were the one, engagement, the wedding, etc, but then it asks about what their marriage was like. Any contentions? What did/do you argue about? Were there times where you considered divorce? What about having children? (If they had children) were there conflicts about child rearing?
The answers and responses are fascinating. And encouraging! And sometimes depressing. But I think that’s what life is, right? It’s good, it’s bad, it’s ugly, it’s the most glorious thing you could imagine. I want to share this quote with you from one of the mother’s of one of the couples (in fact, the article was about three sisters who all got married within a span of a few months in 1980, and all three couples are still together). Lois, the mother of the three sisters, who was married for 61 years before her husband died, said her secret to ‘making it last’ was, “Realizing that marriage is not all sunshine. You have to get through the tough parts to reap the rewards of the good parts.”
Anyways, I just wanted to share that link with you because I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading them. It’s also lead me to consider a NYT subscription because I’ve “reached my limit of 10 free articles a month.” ; )
Happy Saturday, friends!