Sunday, March 13, 2005

The Secret to a Happy Marriage

I attended a wedding a few months ago. During his speech, the father of the bride offered the following quote as the secret to a happy marriage:

“I never know what I like, until I ask my lovely wife”.

The bridesmaids and most of the women present laughed and gave each other knowing looks. They saw the truth in that saying - happy marriages are ones where the woman changes the man and the man accepts this as the inevitable cost of a happy marriage.

But it has always been that way hasn’t it? Marriage has always been about men changing and women orchestrating those changes. Let’s face it, if men had no women in their lives, they would still be living in caves, emerging just long enough to scratch themselves, kill a rabbit or two and slug each other with clubs. The only reason we have progressed this far, with respect to material possessions and comforts of life, is because of women’s constant desire for something more and man’s innate ability to change his priorities and subjugate his own desires to please his woman. (Ask yourself, how many diamond mines there would be if men didn’t buy their women pretty baubles).

It’s time we celebrated men. They are simple creatures with simple needs who have basically stayed the same these years unless directed otherwise by a woman. Women, on the other hand, have undergone a total and complete transformation these past few decades. They have gone from being housewives and mothers to being well represented in universities and in the workforce as lawyers, doctors, managers, professionals, etc…

Men have had to change tremendously to keep pace. And they have done so, for the most part, with dignity and a certain degree of resignation. After all, men are experienced at undergoing change. Since the dawn of monogamous relationships they have been changing as individuals to suit the expectations of their mates. They have come to accept that personal change is an inevitable outcome of falling in love with a women.

The men who do not allow their wives to change them are the ones who never find true happiness. As for the rest – the happily married men – well, they are the ones who understand that there is one simple rule for being a happy husband: “I never know what I like, until I ask my lovely wife”.


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