Modesty means a marriage will last forever, but studies show the most expensive the engagement ring, then the higher rise of divorce. Social Science Research Network, through their study A Diamond Is Forever and Other Fairytales, studied 300 couples around the time of their engagements. They focused on factors such as income, religious attendance and other activities the duo took part in together. In their findings, they found couples should date at least 3 years to minimize their chances of divorce; this excuses either partner of being a gold-digger and wanting to rush into things too fast. This is good advice, and the following advice might serve as bubble wrap for your divorce-proof marriage as well.
Always think of family first. You may or may not come from a large family that gathers every Sunday for dinner. You have four or more siblings, and all those extended relatives mixed in. Your spouse, on the other hand, might come a small, tighter family. There may only be 3 or 4 in their family, counting the parents, so it may feel awkward for them going into such a large crowd. Keep this in mind and help them cope with it. Also, help your partner realize how important your family is to you. Why not get everyone together at your house? This way it’s your home front and you can disappear if you like.
Another factor is your health and wellness. Beyond general health, your values should be aligned like the moon and stars. He or she should want to be your running partner. They should want to accompany you to the gym or go on the diet with you. They might not like it—but they should be willing to try it. If your partner is a TV junkie, it’s going to be hard for you to go to the gym each day. Try to motivate them to go with you, convincing them they have television there.
You and your partner must also be eye to eye on finances. This is a tough area for many couples. Money issues are often the leading cause of divorce. He or she runs up a credit card, buys an expensive item and so forth. To some partners, these are deal breakers, but try to work things out. After all, you’re not perfect, either. Work with your partner to develop a budget that suits both of you, just not one of you. This way you both know how much money you’re bringing in and how many expenses you have. It’s a good lesson in working together.
Finally, don’t forget to be rock solid when you discuss the children. You are a team, not competitors. If John goes to mom and gets a no, then he gets a no from dad. Simple as that. You both should also discuss your expectations for your children regarding school, religion and how you’ll teach them about the world. It’s so crucial you be on the same page because your kids pick up on everything. They’re going to know who the weaker parent is and go towards them, so don’t let them.
Follow these tips and your marriage is sure to strong. It’s going to last forever if you and your partner work as a team. That’s really the secret to it all.