On marriage

How would you define a blissful marriage? What are the secrets of a happy marriage?

Is it never arguing? Is it never spending a day apart? Is it having children? Is it not having children?

Gosh, if only I could figure out the answer, then I would no doubt be one of the richest people, if not THE richest person on this planet.

The truth is, after 3 years of living together with the man I love, 2 years of being married and 1 year of being parents to our only child, I am only just beginning to discover how to make my marriage work.

Now you may disagree and say, if you have to make it work, haven’t you married the wrong guy? To which I shall quote the girls in Sex & The City 2, “Marriage is not a job, but it is work.”

I remember attending M&J’s wedding in June and something that J’s mother said on marriage really struck me. She said, “…要懂得体谅、忍让。要幸福。” (which translates as one needs to be understanding, tolerant, patient and happy)

Interestingly, Auntie didn’t say “You must love and respect each other” like a lot of people would, but instead she said we have to be “understanding, patient and tolerant”. I understood it in two ways. First, love and respect merely unites a couple; it’s being “understanding, patient and tolerant” that will truly make a marriage last. Second, Auntie was teaching us how to love and respect each other- by being understanding, patient and tolerant.

It’s about holding your tongue when tempers flare so the argument hits a dead end. It’s about stopping yourself from saying terrible things in angry moments that you will later regret. It’s about seeing beyond just you as an individual but you as a family unit. It’s not about you nor me but us and we. It’s about taking a few steps back on your own so that you can take a few steps forward together. It’s about not being too hung up about personal pride. It’s about not sweating over the small stuff so you can focus on being making a happy life. It’s about pacing yourself because your love needs to last a lifetime.

And of course, it’s about recognising and more importantly, accepting that love needs sacrifices. And if you are not willing to make those sacrifices or be at peace at heart with the sacrifices you have made, then that’s when trouble brews.

See, this is all new to me. I always thought I was very feminist in my thinking. I have to be as capable as a man. I will never walk behind my husband or kneel down to remove his shoes and put his feet in slippers when he comes home. (Not that I do that now). Why should I wear something my husband wants me to wear? I must prove we are equals in this relationship by not being a pushover. I must make my views and opinions heard.

But the reality is we have to face situations where life’s corridor gets so narrow that one of us has to walk in front and the other has to walk behind. And so I learn. That sometimes I can’t always walk in front. It’s not about being not feminist, or not standing up for your rights. It’s because “I love this man so much.”

Believe it or not, it is about love and respect. By being understanding, patient and tolerant.

Explore posts in the same categories: Drama, Family, Relationship

One Comment on “On marriage”

  1. […] to love. Parts of The Happiness Project have been quite interesting and thought-provoking. I have blogged about marriage some months before but constantly working on my marriage is a priority to me because “a good marriage is one of […]

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