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05:27 PM on 11/16/2011
I was confused by your definition of complementary. I thought it meant contrasting as in
: relating to or constituting one of a pair of contrasting colors that produce a neutral color when combined in suitable proportions
2
: serving to fill out or complete
3
: mutually supplying each other's lack
So you don't believe that "opposites attrack?"
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littlefairy
One little fairy against the world
09:03 PM on 11/16/2011
I wondered the same thing about complementary. It means to go with, not to be the same as.
06:35 AM on 11/17/2011
statisitcally, I think there is plenty of science that suggests opposites do not attract, or at least remain attracted. I'm sure you know (don't we all) examples that buck the trend, but in general, the opposites attract theory will more often then not end in a parting of ways.
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diahni
09:07 AM on 11/17/2011
Depends - I'm totally different than my husband tempermentally - but we have the same sense of humor, same politics, some intersecting taste in music.
04:40 PM on 11/16/2011
We all need to feel loved.. We all need to feel valued and NOT taken for granted. A kind thank you, I'm on your team, I've got your back reassuranc­e. Look after your spouse, look after your marriage..­.don't take it, him or her for granted.”
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probo
fear is a waste of my time
06:29 AM on 11/17/2011
X2
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jwb2013
REAL EYES REALIZE REAL LIES.
04:28 PM on 11/16/2011
typo: marriage. (;oD
04:28 PM on 11/16/2011
I'm 32 years married and looking forward to another 32! I agree with Warren's "broad-based compatibility," but I would add the following:

Be best friends, but never expect your spouse to be everything to you.

Value your spouse's interests and thoughts, and always have your own.

Give each other a lot of space - physical, emotional, and spiritual. Life is a journey, and your way doesn't necessarily have to be his/her way.

"Cave early and cave often" (Tony Snow's old bit of advice). Admit you're wrong, because in every disagreement, there's a sense in which you are.

Plan to fall out of love and fall back in love with him/her at least once a year. "In love" is like the high point on the roller coaster - it's not the whole ride!
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DavidBlackburn
Recovering Republican since 1995.
12:49 AM on 11/17/2011
I'd add that we have to put our commitment before our ego.
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CaptainFrogbert
07:27 AM on 11/17/2011
“Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.

Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.

Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,

Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.”

― Khalil Gibran, The Prophet

"Tie two birds together, though they have four wings, they cannot fly. -- David Carradine in a cheesy martial arts movie (Circle of Iron)
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jwb2013
REAL EYES REALIZE REAL LIES.
04:27 PM on 11/16/2011
Traditional church arriage: A patriarchal arrangement of possessiveness. The owner ( the father ), gives HIS daughter to a man ( the groom ), then another man ( the priest ), presides for another man ( their god ). And then tells them to make promises that no one can make...to " forsake all other love". No one can say when love hits, and no one can say how long they will stay in love. Proof? Over 50% of those kind of marriages fail. LOL
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mcartri
04:17 PM on 11/16/2011
Contrary to the having a bunch of compatible attributes, I chose not to marry a clone. Happily married for 34-years now, not sitting across the table from a mirror.
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CaptainFrogbert
07:29 AM on 11/17/2011
Good point.

I find that my wife has strengths that I lack and vice versa. Being there for each other magnifies our strengths and minimizes our weaknesses.

We are also the best of friends. I can think of nothing more fun, nothing I enjoy more than spending the day with my wife.
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04:13 PM on 11/16/2011
The best marriage advice.....Always remember, women need to be loved and men need to be respected. Therefore, men....love your wives. Women...respect your husband.
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probo
fear is a waste of my time
06:31 AM on 11/17/2011
That is excellent advice...f&f
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CaptainFrogbert
07:30 AM on 11/17/2011
Women need respect, too. And men need love.
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10:15 AM on 11/17/2011
Good grief!

Of course both genders need love and respect. They also need food, water and shelter...but I didn't see the need to list those either.
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KeyopsBack
Obama 332 Romney 206
04:10 PM on 11/16/2011
Engagement ring, wedding ring, suffering
04:31 PM on 11/16/2011
LOL, but when we focus on the person rather than the jewelry, this doesn't have to be the outcome!
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Targa3141
12:06 AM on 11/17/2011
Marriage - two slaves, two masters.
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orbo
Every day is a new day!
03:58 PM on 11/16/2011
Lots of money?
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farmerlady
Blonde, Democratic socialist, and unwilling expat
03:53 PM on 11/16/2011
It's less complex than this. Do I really NEED to find someone who adores "Manon Lescaut", Mahler, and classical ghazals as much as I do to be married happily? Where would I ever find such a person? We are all pretty eclectic in this sense, so if we have to find someone who exactly matches us, we could be looking a long time.

I don't find this to be the case in my observation. The most happily married couples I know have the right personality to be married--that is, they are pretty laid back and tolerant and able to see the humor in things. They are not "mean" people, and long familiarity with another person does not lead them to be dismissive and rude to their partners (as is so often the case).

This makes a happy marriage because such people are simply good, appreciative partners whether they read the same newspapers as their SO or not.

We can all work on being more like this ourselves, too.
07:26 AM on 11/17/2011
Excellent points.
09:46 AM on 11/17/2011
Well said, Lady. I know people who tend to HAVE to be right, at all times, and are temperamentally inclined to want to fight about it if someone disagrees. Only the MOST laid-back spouse can live with that.

One other bit of advice I'd give to men is to look closely at their prospective mother-in-law. If the m.i.l. is a harridan, there's a very good chance that's the only way the daughter knows how to "be" in a marriage. I think it's true to a lesser extent when it comes to a woman looking at her father-in-law, but it's still a factor to consider.
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farmerlady
Blonde, Democratic socialist, and unwilling expat
11:44 AM on 11/17/2011
My mother is an extremely aggressive narcissicist. I would not like anyone to judge my relationship skills based on her.

What kind of thing is that to say?
02:21 PM on 11/17/2011
Farmerlady, it's an old saying that often proves true. Obviously if a prospective mate looks at your mother and looks at you and decides you're the exact opposite of your mother, then you're home free.
03:39 PM on 11/16/2011
I am not sure about this piece. I think we are all different. My spouse and I share basic values, but part of our success is that we are not afraid to debate issues with each other and find our arguments are helpful and do not hinder.
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ajax cleanser
"The conclusion of the matter..."
03:47 PM on 11/16/2011
I think your similar basic values are the key. If they include the principle of self sacrificing love a marriage will never fail.
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LeftofGandhi
You're a member of which well regulated militia?
03:36 PM on 11/16/2011
Wow HP, seriously? The secret to a fulfilling relationship is based on "Broad Based Compatibility"? Let me guess, the kind of compatibility promised by eharmony? Wow. Just wow.
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littlefairy
One little fairy against the world
09:05 PM on 11/16/2011
Lefty, what makes you say wow? Just curious.
dcswampfox
I also have a predictor badge!
03:27 PM on 11/16/2011
i don't buy all of this.
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gaydood
VOTE OUT THE REPUBS !!!
03:23 PM on 11/16/2011
i want to get married and have real happiness now !
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gerorem
Linus v. Lucy
03:22 PM on 11/16/2011
Acceptance. I didn't marry my wife because she understood me. I did because she accepted me. Really knowing each other takes decades, but worth it.