What is your secret to your happy marraige

gurley157fsJanuary 13, 2006

For those of you who are in fulfilling happy relationships, what would you say is the secret to your success?

I was previously married to a loser for 20 yrs. Divorced him and then 3 years ago married the love of my life.

We celebrated our 3rd this past New Years Eve. We are best friends first and formost. He now works at the same location that I do (different section/job), we carpool every day, we fish together, ride motorcycles, and he supports my gardening addiction :-).

Is there anyone else out there who has been HAPPILY married an extended length of time that can share thier secrets? How did you make your marraige work?

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Total honesty and commitment.
100% from each person.
Understanding and willingness to compromise.

Going on 10 years strong.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2006 at 11:46AM
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We just celebrated 21 years in September. I think the key to a long marraige is compromise. Honesty is a must too. You are never going to see eye to eye on everything. I knew what I wanted in a man when I married him. He is a wonderful father, husband and provider.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2006 at 2:37PM
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That is what I htought wehn I married my husband. When I met him we became friends, we laughed together, talked about things. I told him that honesty was very important to me. But I am finding that he is not honest with me in many ways. But I do not know how to confront him with it. I went through this before, and I know what the outcome will be. He will get angry
and defencive. What he does not seem to understnad that when I find that he has not been honest with me I withdraw from him. I do not feel the same now. Having sex with him is hard cause I feel that the dishonesty is putting a wedge between us and he does not even know it. Like right now I took off from work because I did not feel good, so he thinks I am at work. He gets off at 4:30, and it is now almost 7:00. Where is he. I see where he calls someone before he leaves work. I have access to the phone records since I pay them.
I found out that he has a porn on his computor which I do not mind but when he hides it I feel that he is lieing to me. Which he is cause he always told me that he didnt watch that stuf.
What should I do?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2006 at 6:47PM
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Love, respect, common life plans, honesty, trust, fun times together.

Almost 14 years and loving every minute of it.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2006 at 5:23PM
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The only thing you need for a happy marriage is to marry the right person.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2006 at 10:30PM
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I forgot to add a sense of humor!

    Bookmark   January 15, 2006 at 10:53PM
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Married 35 years, there's not an easy answer as everyone is different. For us, sharing broad goals, thinking somewhat alike, understanding there will be differences, not wanting the other to be unhappy, compromise without loss of self, sharing fears as well as successes, mainly mutual respect. We enjoy our children and grandchildren. Lynn

    Bookmark   January 15, 2006 at 11:05PM
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17 years here. Marry a compatible person and don't sweat the small stuff. Compatible means you share common values, beliefs and goals, including money issues, religion, politics and having/raising children.

Keep growing - educate yourselves, read, have hobbies (individual and shared), meet new people and cultivate friends. Treat your relationship as an adventurous journey through life together.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2006 at 12:04PM
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We've been married 31 years- have a hard time believing it's been so long! We married in our early twenties, and never a day goes by that I don't marvel at how lucky we are to have each other. We're each others first lover, so there's no past relationships to be a problem. We are very compatable in values, socio-economic background, religon and politics. We have no major problems- financial or otherwise. We trust each other completely, and make an effort not to do anything that we know hurts or bothers the other. We will compromise if a situation arises that we both feel strongly about. We respect each other, and we both think the other is smarter than we are. We admire each others strengths, and accept each others weaknesses.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2006 at 6:53PM
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Married almost 7 years, but together for 12 and going strong.

I agree many of the above posts: Love, respect, common life plans/values, honesty, trust, fun times together, sense of humor, sharing responsibilities, willingness to discuss relationship issues when they come up, sharing fears as well as successes, treating each other as equals.

I have girlfriends who complain about their husbands and have made fun of me because my DH and I are "so nice to each other." Aren't we supposed to be nice to each other? I feel like I married my best friend...so of course I will treat him like my best friend.

We bicker when we are overly tired and occassionally have a heated fight (1 to 2 times a year at most?), although we don't yell. Key to fighting is to keep it on issue...don't bring in all sorts of other complaints and insults, just deal with the issue that made you/him mad.

Honestly, though, I think one of the reasons our relationship is so strong is because we share a great love of the outdoors. We go on long hikes, backpacking trips, and backcountry ski days together. These times are very powerful in keeping our bond strong. Just this weekend we had an amazing day of backcountry skiing together. We were both totally high off the experience and had shared it with each other. Days like that help renew our joy of being together...My point being that having some sort of hobby that you both enjoy doing together that gets you out of the daily grind can be wonderful bonding time. It doesn't necessarily have to be in the outdoors...it could be cooking together, dancing, going to see live music, gardening, playing cards...whatever.

I am also just lucky ehough to have found such an amazing partner.


    Bookmark   January 17, 2007 at 6:06PM
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Good communication.

Sense of humour on both sides. Ability to laugh at yourself.

Similar standards of behaviour, similar family background.

Ability to forgive.

Ability to rise above the cycle of blame.

Knowing that you can speak your mind without fear.

Learning the right way to talk to each other when having an argument. Don't accuse, just make statements.

Everyone pulling their weight and working for the good of the family.

Realizing that your family is number one, always comes first.

Willingness to identify problems and adjust your behaviour, by seeking advice, or reading books.

Be supportive because thats what makes them happy.

Tinylady....perhaps you could start a new thread for your posting, you might find it easier to get some suggestions, that way. Take care.


    Bookmark   January 17, 2007 at 6:29PM
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My husband and I are BEST friends.We actually enjoy each others company.
We have fun together.Whether it's playing video games together,or goofing off at the grocery store. We make every chore or task seem like it's something fun and do it together.

We have no secrets from each other. No matter how painful,we have always been honest.

We always set aside time to be alone.Whether it's a quick bath together or a night on the town.

We realize that life is a gift.That everyday spent together could be our last.Therefore,we dont take each other for granted.

We also give each other space when needed...But dont surround ourselves in "tempting situations" or around people who may be destructive to our relationship (ex girlfriends/boyfriends or overly flirtatious people)

Take care of each other when sick,even if that means running out at 3am to get medicine for the other.

It's the other little things that count.He brings home take out cuz he knows I'm tired.
I make his lunch because he doesnt have money for lunch one day.

We have always comforted each other too.I cry after getting a bad haircut,and he holds me and tells me he'd love me if I was bald.
He says he is getting fat,I tell him it is just more for me to love.

We take care in our child,our plants,our animals....we nurture them,and each other.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2007 at 6:47PM
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12 wonderful years so far...

- Total trust and honesty, plus forgiveness for our imperfections. It's a lot easier to be honest when you know the other person will love you no matter what.

- Common values. Our backgrounds are very different, but our core values are identical.

- Putting 'Us' first, then 'You', then 'Me'. Bearing in mind always that what's best for 'Us' IS almost always what's best for me.

- Making time for each other, which sometimes means the kids get a can of something for dinner so Hubby and I can have a special meal alone together.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2007 at 5:15PM
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Thought of another one...

Being supportive of each other, when dealing with the children, or child...and if one does not agree with how the other one is handling the situation...then talk about it later, not in front of the child.

Being financially secure, sure helps in the stability of the relationship !

Keep in mind the "big picture", your core values, and what you are doing "it" all for...to have a happy life, only get one chance of that. Making sure each day counts, and like Coolmama says, making your times together happy and meaniful, no matter what the activity is.

I am enjoying reading everyone's comments, perhaps we should publish a book from all this !


    Bookmark   January 18, 2007 at 6:35PM
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Here are our "7 Rules to a Happy Marriage":

1. Fall in love and marry your best friend.

2. Be NICE to each other. "Please" and "Thank You" are not cuss words.

3. Have similar tastes on the big stuff - ie. money, politics, child-rearing, religion, etc.

4. Have different tastes on the small stuff (keeps it interesting) - ie. food, decorating, football teams, etc.

5. Talking through a problem instead of yelling (see #2).

6. No argument is allowed to start with "You are...". All arguments/discussions must being with "I feel..." or "I think...".

7. Only 1 person is allowed to be crazy at a time.

8. Never let a day go by without telling the other one that you love them. Even if you are mad.

9. Always pick up your own mess.

  1. Never forget - it's us against the world. Everyone else is secondary. Our marriage and our spouse's wishes come before anything else. Even MIL's...
    Bookmark   February 2, 2007 at 5:35PM
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"7. Only 1 person is allowed to be crazy at a time."

Mandy g, you are full of wisdom!!!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2007 at 6:17PM
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1. Be someone trustworthy. In ALL areas. In love, in finances, etc.

2. Cover each others back. In other words, that you both know without a shadow of a doubt, that your spouse believes in you and will stand up for you.

3. Do the small things for each other that tell each other they matter. Greet them with a big smile when they come home. Sew on a button. Bother to make dinner special. Tell each other how much you appreciate them, and that you value them (tell them what it is you value about them)! Let them know that you also appreciate what they do for the family.

4. Be willing to bite your tongue and let things slide......................................once in awhile. Extend grace where you can.

5. Be able to forgive and move on.

6. Try your best not to badmouth each others family. It only makes everyone defensive. We all have flaws.

7. Do not join into "husband bashing" with your friends or family...I see women do this all the time. It is extremely disloyal (would you like your DH sitting around with all the men you know telling them awful things about you? Then don't do it to to him!!! Besides, for those of you who indulge in this past time, keep in mind that it tells other women that things aren't so perfect between you two, and lets another woman know she may be able to squeeze in. Because she won't believe all the bad things you tell her, regardless of what she says. Why, because women think that "she can change him".

8.Be each others biggest fan. Encourage one another. Ask about each others day, and actually listen and care.

9. Do not flirt, or hang around flirts.

  1. When one is exhausted, the other rallies. When one is discouraged, the other can encourage.

  2. Smile... and be the kind of person that "you" would like to come home to.

  3. Simply...love each other. It softens the hard edges in life.

  4. LEARN TO PERSEVERE...like an athlete!!!! There will be times in marriage where you feel like running. When you wonder what in the world you were thinking when you chose this person. When you look at them some days, and are not even sure you like the person...let alone love them. Hang in there. Just hang in there, and remember that another day will come when you will feel like the luckiest person in the world to have this same person. Life can be funny that way.

  5. Everyone pitch in and keep the house decent. No one wants to come home to a pigsty, and no one feels happy, let alone romantic in one. It weighs heavy on everyone in the house.

  6. Believe in something bigger than you both.

There are probably more but it is late, so I will call it a day. By the way, they are not necessarily in the order of importance. Just what popped into my thoughts as I was typing.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2007 at 10:46PM
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My husband is my best friend, has been from day one (sorry mom) we have been married 13 years, we are coming up on our 16th anniversary of actually being togather (Feb. 14) most people around me are amazed by how long we have been togather and by how happy we are. Don't know if there is a secret to it, we don't go out a whole lot, most of the time we are happiest togather at home with our two kids. We both have totally different intrests and it still works, if he is fishing at my mom's lake I am horseback riding around the lake hollering at him every chance I get asking him how the fishing is going *snicker* yes he thinks I am a smart butt, but he is too, if I am out in the garden working he will try every chance he gets to soak me with the hose "accidently" and he loves to stand over my shoulder and tell me how he would do it if he was the one cooking (he just wants me to walk off so he can get a finger full of cookie dough:)
lots of laughs and lots of fun, wouldn't trade a minute of it:)

    Bookmark   February 6, 2007 at 1:38AM
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Bursting into a smile every time he walks into the room. After eight years it's still like the day we met.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2007 at 3:20AM
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When I first got married I got the best piece of advice I've ever received as far as relationships go. It was very simple:

If he wants to do something and you really have no other reason to say 'no' other than the fact you don't want him to... say yes. Let him have his own time. He'll love you all the more for it.
I try to remember this evertime my DH asks if I mind if he goes golfing with his buddies. Sure I'd rather he stayed home and hung out with me and the kids... but he's so much happier and WANTS to thank me by helping out more or doing something sweet for me when he comes home.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2007 at 12:05PM
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We'll be married for 8 years this summer, and were together for nearly 20 years before that. We've had our rough patches, but I don't think our relationship has ever been seriously in doubt.

I think that the secret, if there is one, is that we each think we're the lucky one, and we try to keep it that way.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2007 at 12:09PM
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