- 9 years ago
- Wedding: December 2019 - Paris, France
Not encore, but I have some random advice that I got from a stranger at a bar when I was eating along on a work trip.
He had been married twice and I asked (because I would never see him again and really didn’t care what he thought of me) why they ended.
He said the following, “You need to learn how often your husband wants to have sex. If you are not willing to have sex as much as he wants, it will not work. He will go find it somewhere else.”
Even though I think that guy was an a-hole, a part of it still resonated. It’s less about sex than about knowing your partners wants and needs and deciding if you can accommodate. Most of us learn this long before we’re engaged, but some people kind of brush over them or think they will change. This guy reminded me that they probably won’t change, so if they need to be accepted or addressed before you’re married or else it won’t last.
I married the wrong person for the wrong reasons. I was 25 years old and he was the best I had had up to that point, but he wasn’t really all that great. I settled. I remember cringing the day we mailed the invitations – once they were in the mailbox, they were gone, there was no turning back. I knew deep down I wasn’t happy but I wasn’t strong enough to speak up. I was too worried about disappointing our families and hurting his feelings – I cared less about me and more about everyone else.
I really did try to make it work but all the little things that were wrong before we were married turned into BIG things after we were married. He was controlling to the point of abuse, he was verbally abusive and wasn’t able to show his emotions. In 5 years of marriage and 2 years of courtship, we had kissed a handful of times. Intimacy between us became so non-existant, we would go in 9 month stretches of no sex (because he didn’t want to). I fell into a deep depression, went from 135 pounds to 110 pounds and couldn’t function in daily life. I felt trapped – like, “I made my decision, and now I’m stuck.” I felt a lot of guilt over that but ultimately chose to file for divorce for my own sake – our marriage, that relationship was so toxic, it was killing me.
The best advice I can give someone is – MAKE SURE and take your time. If you have a little voice in the back of your head telling you something is wrong, trust it. Also, if you’re engaged and know that something isn’t right, don’t go through with it out of fear of other people’s feelings – your feelings and happiness are just as important as their’s.
This also resonated with me. My mom calls this the “White Dress Syndrome” or the “Insert Groom Here” Wedding. She says that some girls reach a point in their life where once they’ve dated a guy for a certain number of years or reach a certain age, they just want a wedding and a white dress. They don’t really take into account the commitment they are making. Obviously, these marriages are bound to fail….
This is a cool post thanks bees for posting! Things to watch out for.. hmm
My parents, on the other hand, met when my mother was 16 and my father was 20 (they were introduced by my grandfathers). They were married at 18 & 22. They will be celebrating their 50 wedding aniversary next year. They had two years to get to know eachother before getting married. It hasn’t always been smooth sailing, but they accept each other as they are — no “fixing!” Another major aid to their lengthy marriage is that they go on dates still (and always have) — they have a standing once-a-week dancing date to this very day!
My parents divorced after 22 years of marriage. My dad gave my husband and I some pieces of advice about 2 months before our wedding that really stuck with me. He said they were things he learned from his first marriage that he would have done differently. The one that stuck the most was to make your marriage an island. Even if you are fighting with in laws, friends, have drama at work or whatever – dont let that onto your island. This includes kids. Basically what he meant was to always have your partner and your marriage in its own beautiful world and dont let all the outside factors affect the bond of your marriage.
He cheated, and lied about it. And we were both very young, right out of college. He was more immature though and that ultimately played a part in him cheating and lying and rebelling against being “tied down”.
I think what Tickles wrote makes sense. Don’t take each other for granted. Get up and greet each other at the door. You can really just get bogged down in day-to-day crap and forget to remember why you are so important to each other.
PS regarding your question on arranged marriages — yes, I’ve seen this too, where arranged marriages were strong. Not because they didn’t believe in divorce, but because they had a common bond, a common goal, and they learned to really love each other. A friend of mine had an arranged marriage (She was from India) and she explained to me “Westerners get caught up in passion. We want commitment and shared interests. Love grows out of being compatible. My family and friends said to me ‘this man is like you, he has similar goals, he is kind and gentle, he will be devoted, he wants children like you do'” and let me tell you, they were so good together, and their love grew strong. It always fascinated me.
Thanks experienced bee’s, for posting on this thread. A lot of the advice has me thinking differently (in a good way).
Not an encore bride, but learned from watching other people or reading books on relationships.
Don’t let ‘time’ be a factor—for many people reaching a certain age forces them to do things they wouldn’t do otherwise. Young or old, there is a schedule in your head (we’ve been together X years or I’m X old) that adds pressure. Obviously, age is a factor if you want to have kids. But would you rather have kids with someone you will divorce, or risk not having kids at all. I would take the risk that I would be childless, than have to negotiate raising a child with someone I shouldn’t have married in the first place.
Just because nothing is wrong, doesn’t mean that it’s right. DH got married before me because he was mid-30’s, been with her for 6 years (see previous paragraph), but ultimately it was because he couldn’t think of a reason why he shouldn’t—she was a good, nice person and they didn’t fight a lot. Once he was married, he realized there was so much more that had to be Right, not that nothing was Wrong.
Remember 75% of all problems NEVER get resolved. That’s right, think of all the issues you have with your SO, 75% of those you will still be fighting about in 5…10…15… years. What you think you can put up with changes with time. So the sex thing PP mentioned. Many people think they can deal with someone who is otherwise perfect, but doesn’t want sex as much as them. In year 1 or 2 that might be okay, but in year 7 or 10, suddenly the lack of sex might be enough to make you leave. So ask yourself, would you stay with this person if you continue having the same fights for the rest of your life? Have you been able to negotiate something that is win-win for both people? Not an, I guess I can live with that, but a win-win for both people. And some things it’s not possible to do that. Some things in order for one person to win the other has to ‘lose’ (sex, children, etc)
Learn how to fight. No other advice, other than learn how to fight.
He left me for a flight attendant. It sounds like i made that up- but its true.
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