How do you define a happy marriage?

During a recent conversation with a 20ish young man I suggested that he needed to begin looking to the future. Staring at me blankly he questioned, “What do you mean. I’m always looking and planning for the future. If you’re talking about marriage – that’s out. I can’t name three happy marriages.”
I was left to ponder the thought of what defines a happy marriage from an outsiders perspective and do I know three happily married couples. I do know more than three couples that I would consider happily married, but does that mean that they are effervescently bubbly, always pawing one another, groping and kissing? No, but their interactions are usually loving and exhibit an overall affection for one another.
That is not to say that at some point in their relationship they have not hit a rough patch. I would say that is what a marriage and any serious committed relationship does. You have good times and bad times and pray the good outweighs the bad.
You may roll over one day and look at the person laying next to you and wonder “How did I get here?” Because on that particular day the person you have vowed your life to has taken you to a place you don’t want to be and you are not very happy with them. This condition may persist for a day, two and maybe even a week or more.
However, at the end of the day if LOVE is what brought you together you will roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty as you work to rectify the problems.
What are your thoughts? Do you know how to define a happy marriage?

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2 Responses to How do you define a happy marriage?

  1. Radiogirl says:

    Who’s got your back? No matter how mad you may be at your significant other, if they are ill, you will do what you can to help get them back to their normal self! Not many people consider the selflessness that should be prevalent when considering marriage.

    Friendships demand many of the same components as a marriage. Except w/a friendship you don’t stand to lose half if it does not work out.

  2. Lori says:

    Well, here’s, more or less, how I define a “happy” marriage:

    1) When the two of you share more GOOD “remember when” tales than BAD ones;

    2) When you can look at him (or her) from across the room and he (or she) knows exactly what you’re thinking and vice versa;

    3) When something bad happens, he’s (or she’s) the first somebody you want to tell and when something wonderful happens, he’s (or she’s) the first somebody you want to tell;

    4) When upon review of your marriage vows (particularly the “for better or worse, richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, til death do us part” portion) you still consider it more of a privelege than a hardship to honor them;

    5) WHen the sound of his (or her) snoring brings you more comfort than annoyance;

    6) When you can both openly comment, praise, and/or outright eye-ball the physical attributes or attractiveness of another because you know neither of you is interested in venturing beyond a look;

    7) When you’re comfortable enough with one another to sit in a room for hours, engaged in separate tasks and in relative silence without either of you thinking something must be wrong.

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