Today marks 17 years of marriage for my wife and myself! I think it’s interesting that so many people are like wow that’s a long time!
I believe the reality is that yes it is a long time and no… it’s really not a long time. My grandparents where married for 60 years when my grandfather passed away. My wife’s grandparents are still married after 70 years!
I think why so many people today are saying wow is because in today’s culture of throw- away marriages 17 years is an eternity. I believe that most people cannot imagine themselves married to same person for this long and maybe that is part of the issue.
Also this is less of a cultural expectation for people to get and stay married. We live in a society that doesn’t value commitment or responsibility. Marriage definitely takes that!
Maintaining a good healthy marriage also takes selflessness. I often tell the couples that I counsel that when we start making our marriage about the other person it’s amazing how good it can be.
Over the past 17 years I have learned that serving my wife is one of the best moves I can make in my marriage. The reality is that my life has very little to do with me. My life is so much more about my wife and children. There just isn’t much room for selfishness in a healthy marriage.
Another thing that I have learned is safety. Providing safety for my wife means that she can thrive as a person.
Now let me be honest; Am I perfect? NOOO and I don’t need to be. I have a fantastic wife that accepts my imperfections and stands with me. She loves me in spite of my faults; not expecting me to be perfect. She makes as many sacrifices for me as I do for her.
How have we stayed together for 17 years?
1. By God’s grace and our faith in Him
2. Remembering the commitment we made to each other
3. Good old fashioned stubbornness
4. Great friends
5. Having fun together
6. A really good therapist
I want to be a voice of encouragement to all of you that are married. Stick with it! Keep working! Keep Dating! Keep laughing! Keep being selfless! Keep the number of a good therapist on speed dial! (Mainly myself or Joe Martino!)