According to Sam and Jim Commenting on things that irk us off, make us laugh out loud or just seem too weird too believe According to Sam and Jim: Headed for 20 More Years

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Headed for 20 More Years

Happy anniversary Kathleen!

Twenty years ago - long before Sam - on November 21, 1992, I married my wonderful wife Kathleen. WOW! 20 years now we’ve been together. I know that may not seem like a long time to many of you, but for me, having been divorced more than once, 20 years is a heck of an accomplishment. I tell Kathleen she’s lucky she got me when she did - after I’d learned some hard lessons about marriage. I like to say, “You could do a lot worse, you know.” I’m not sure she agrees with that, but it’s totally true.

The secret of our marriage is not like Earl says in my favorite comic strip Pickles, “I’ve discovered the secret to a successful marriage. First, find out what the husband wants to do. Then find out what the wife wants to do. And then do what the wife wants to do.” LOL! But there’s a lot of truth in Earl’s statement.

Of course it’s helpful in a marriage if the wife wants to do what her husband wants to do too.

The thing I’ve always found most difficult about marriage is the constant need to compromise. Sometimes you just want to do what you want to do, but decisions in marriage require consideration of your spouse’s needs and desires and not just your own. What I’ve always found distressing about marriage - and I see this in couples all the time - is one partner telling the other partner he or she can’t do something. “No, you’re not going to buy that new car. “No, we’re not going to your mother’s for Thanksgiving.” I mean, where do we get off telling our marital partner what he or she can’t do?

Spousal ownership is, in my estimation, the biggest problem married couples face. Why do we think we can suddenly start telling our partner what he or she is allowed to do once we’re married? Are we getting married just to become someone else’s parent? Maybe worse though is refusing to join your partner in doing what he or she wants to do. Each time I tell Kathleen I don’t want to play a game with her or drive to Seattle with her, I disappoint her and I know those disappointments pile up. How can she not resent me sometimes? Fortunately, she’s a forgiving person. I hope I am just as forgiving, but I wonder.

What does the Bible tell us? That we should become one flesh, right? Does that also mean we are to become one spirit, to start liking and wanting to do the same things? I know that men are supposed to sacrifice themselves to make their wives happy - which for me has always been way difficult. I used to think happy marriages just happened. But I found out they didn’t. I realize now that I consciously have to want to make my marriage work and I have to make the sacrifices and compromises necessary to accomplish that goal.

Of course it could be I just need more oxytocin. A Los Angeles Times article by Melissa Healy, says that the latest scientific findings “suggest that oxytocin, which floods the body in response to orgasm, early romance, breast feeding and childbirth, may act more subtly in humans than has been widely understood.” And that particular research apparently “suggests” that oxytocin “might play some role in pair-bonding,” and may increase empathy and trust in males and females alike.

Maybe. All I know is Kathleen really could have done a lot worse. Me too, of course.

I love you Babe and that’s the straight poop. Happy Anniversary. Think we can make it to 50? 

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