I was pondering the question, what makes a strong marriage? What advice would I give someone just getting married?

In fact I have been in a marriage that failed, and in one (lasting 27 years so far) that’s very sturdy and wonderful. So I have a frame of reference.

Here’s my advice. If you have something to add, please comment!

1. In any disagreement, put the relationship ahead of your separate interests.

2. At the outset, choose someone to be the head of the family who will have the last word. Being the leader is not as great as it seems because the head must put the interests of the other person ahead of his or her own when conflicts arise.

3. Expect that your spouse will occasionally fail or screw up. When that happens, don’t judge, but come alongside.

4. Don’t complain to others about your spouse. Always air problems directly to your spouse.

5. Don’t expect to change your spouse’s ways. Hope and pray that others will say the right word at the right time. But if you are being hurt, you need to confront, of course.

6. When it comes to dividing chores, always do more than your share as a way of showing love and support. And encourage the other to do the same.

So, who has something to add?


Short Story by Phyllis Wheeler

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