I've been thinking a lot about the implications of being married for 50 years and going public with that information. I've been wondering how to share some of the questions I've been asking myself. Questions like:
- What makes a marriage last?
- And how on earth did we come to be where we are?
- And how much of it has been just the blessings of good fortune and how much have we created by focusing on the right things even when it's been difficult?
- And what's the best way to share what we've learned in the process?
I've been doing a lot of writing as part of this process. I think this is something like writing a memoir — I follow one thread or another until a series of vignettes makes things a little clearer.
I've decided to share some of the process with you. There's quite a bit of writing so I'll be sending you a series of e-mails, sort of like serializing a story, over the next couple of weeks. I'll also post them here.
I would love your comments on this project. Please leave a comment here so that others can see it too.
We’ve decided to do two things (besides celebrating with our family and taking a trip) in honor of our 50th anniversary. Both are about passing on the relationship secrets we’ve learned together. The first is a gift that I'll let you know more about later.
The second is to re-release my Being Happy Together Program, but we are still negotiating for some fantastic bonuses to go with it, so I’ll let you know more about that as it develops.
Meanwhile I'll explain a little mystery that we've been asked about repeatedly. Did we meet each other in therapy school?
That's pretty funny to us. Nothing could be further from the truth. We met as undergraduates, fell in love immediately, and within a week I was imagining what our married life would be like. Actually we almost missed each other. It was his third senior semester and I had just transferred to the University of Colorado as a sophomore.
We were married when I graduated two years later. It was only two years because I promised my parents to graduate before I got married. Writing that, I just realized that keeping agreements was important to me even before we were married.
I married him with the understanding that he would be the breadwinner and I would stay home and raise children. It just didn’t happen to work out that way.
At first I worked to put him through graduate school (at the Universities of Denver and Chicago) so he could support me properly later. Then things changed in ways we could not have imagined and laid the groundwork for everything that's happened since.
To be continued…