John Rosemond: The Secret to Staying Married

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By John Rosemond, Facebook, July 25, 2017

My wonderful, tolerant wife, Willie, and I recently celebrated our 49th anniversary. “What’s your secret?” people ask. In addition to fidelity, learning to listen with respect, and giving one another “space”, we came up with some counsel you won’t find in any of the books on marriage that have proliferated in this age of easy divorce.

Accept the big reality. Namely, that staying married is the single most difficult challenge you will ever undertake. Both you and your spouse are highly imperfect beings, each no less so than the other. When two imperfect beings join together in an imperfect union, and their respective imperfections start to collide, imperfection begins to multiply. Accept your equal part in all this and you will be able to retain your sense of humor, which is an outstanding feature of every truly successful marriage.

Accept that neither of your personalities is ever going to change. To stay married, you must accept your differences and apply no value judgments to them, as in, “That’s irrational.” You must not only roll with one another’s differences and the natural friction they create, but learn to celebrate them!

Be stubborn. Huh? That’s right, as in, “I’m going to do everything I can to make this marriage work, no matter what!” Why are so many of today’s marriages failing? In large part because the people in those marriages just aren’t stubborn enough. Many of them have never had to work hard for anything, never had to persevere, never had to hang in there when the going got rougher than rough. As a result, when it comes time in their marriages to do any or all of the above, they just can’t cut the mustard.


John Rosemond is family psychologist, nationally syndicated columnist, and author. He has authored 14 parenting books, pamphlets and writes a nationally syndicated column on parenting. He is married and has two children, Eric and Amy. Wikipedia