Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Differences in Marriage

I have been thinking about this talk on the Renaissance of Marriage by President Eyring about how to make a happy marriage. I love this humourous video on having a long happy marriage.I means a lot to me because my husband and I are very different.

My husband is a person who is always engaged doing something, such as his handyman business. He deals with the real world and likes to follow patterns that have worked well in the past. He does things with exactness. He is a quiet thoughtful person and so am I. The big difference is that my thoughts are racing at top speed. I leap from thought to thought. I love to study and think about ideas. I like to see patterns in behavior and help people reach their potential (I'm a natural teacher). I live mainly in the world of thought and future possibilities. So how have a hands-on builder and a head-in-the-clouds philosopher been happily married for 42 years?

There were times when I wondered if we could make a successful marriage. We were just so different! He didn't seem to understand anything I said and my lack of attentiveness to details, such as rounding accounting, really bothered him.

Finally, we learned that differences can improve a marriage if there is love. Have we become old "twinsies" each giving up part of ourselves so that we are nearly the same?  No! We have become even stronger in our abilities with the help and support of the other. He is my proof reader for my writing which makes my writing better. I help him run his business. He pays the bills, and I write family. His handling of the details allows me more time to use my abilities. Thanks to my husband's love and strengths, I have the time to study, think, and write. I enjoy sharing my strengths with him, helping him plan and run his business and relate to customers. 

It is very helpful to me to have him handle so many of the details of our lives. He appreciates having me plan our family socials and places to go.  But it is more than just having the other person deal with the things that are hard for us, by sharing our strengths we have helped each other grow.  I admired how he could always be so calm while I was flustered and falling apart. He patiently encouraged me to objectively evaluate situations instead of just emotionally reacting to others. I now make wiser decisions and am much happier. I have taught him the basics of social interactions and helped him to understand how others are feeling and what they are really saying. What I thought was obvious was a total mystery to him.  With each other's help we are both stronger, and more capable and happier people. I am no longer afraid and frustrated by our differences. Sometimes it does take us a while to understand each other, but we know it will come. We respect the others strengths which have become our strengths also. I now know that not only can our differences add interest to a marriage, they can, with love, make our lives more full and complete.   

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