Marital Longevity

Imagine being married 79 years. You don’t hear of that too much. If my parents were still alive, January 20th of this year would have been their 79th. I ponder the good days and, well…not so good days in all that they did survive.

We had pause to consider what goes into a “successful” marriage last month as my youngest married the love her life. I suppose we also did this when her sister married 2 1/1 years ago, but they had the benefit of a year’s worth of marriage counseling. The youngest and her betrothed didn’t get that. After all, they were an ocean away from each other for the last year.

It was they who asked us – in particular, my husband – to provide a little bit of wisdom from our 32 years of marriage. We sat together, sipping a bit of good bourbon, to encourage the memories, and brainstormed what we thought made ours last.

I suppose defining success in marriage has to include that whatever year you are celebrating, you can also admit that you are happy and still in love with each other, though I suppose there is room for discussion. Still that was our starting point. Below, is what we ended up both daughters.

29 Ways to Sustain a Happy and Healthy Marriage

By Mom and Dad Franklin  December 21, 2018

Don’t go to bed angry

Don’t talk about money after 5 pm.

Pick your battles.  Take the long view

Give grace; be merciful.  Know the difference.

Forgive and move on.

Don’t keep score

Communicate – don’t assume.

Be flexible.

Have a budget.

Never spend more than you make.

Have a date night.

Hug a lot.

Say “I love you” every day.

Keep God in your marriage.

God should be the center of your life. 

Talk, dream, talk some more.

Keep your thoughts on the future and what is possible not on the past and what could have been.

Know when to say, “Let’s talk about this later.”

Know when to count to 100 before speaking.

Words said can’t be taken back.

Give compliments.

Staying in love over the long term is a conscious decision with intentional actions.

Believe in and encourage each other.

Always tell the truth.

Rely on each other.  When one gets weary, allow the other to stand for the two of you.

Let NO ONE and NOTHING come between you two.

Husbands honor God, then wives should submit to their husbands.  1Cor 11:3 and Ephesians 5: 22-24.  This doesn’t mean that wives have no say or aren’t important.  And, when the husband is out of alignment with God, the wife should recognize that submitting to her husband is as sinful.  It is when both take their rightful place that there is joy and blessings in the marriage.  The husband should be wise enough to recognize the gifts of his bride and therefore, lean on her wisdom and talents, but then he should make the final decisions for the two.

Honor God and He will bless you both richly.

Happy spouse; happy house.

So what would you include? I’m interested.

About Frankie

A Navy vet, an educator (retired but still working), and a mom of three girls, and two grandsons. Married to the love of my life. Dirt and words. That sums up what gets my attention. Read on and find out why.
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