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Fix or Mantain?

March 22, 2010
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This is not meant to be a either or thing. I am pretty dang certain both is probably wise.

Here is where it all started. Like where it always starts: on the couch in my apartment. All life’s great moments happen on the couch (like my proposal for instance) I am fairly certain. If my dang couch wasn’t so beat up and hideous, I would be convinced that I might shed a tear or two when I free-cycle* it. Either way, it’s just another normal day at at the Shoestring couch household.

I find out that apparently my church is doing a marriage retreat. Sweet. Maybe its’ the extrovert-nerd in me but I love shiate like this. I am the one who was all about the youth camp, then the college retreat, etc. I love group activities and “bonding moments”. I love finding out a side of people I normally don’t see till Sunday: “Dr. D wears jeans? I didn’t think he even knew what they were!”

Combine this with my recent infactuation with all things “married”. For example, I loved that I could buy Cory a “Happy Birthday To My Husband” card for his birthday two days ago. All these other married couples want you at their spring cook outs and barbeques. It’s like a being granted admittance to a club you never knew you wanted in. Or you are suddenly part of a cult. Whatever. Now there is a freaking “marriage retreat”! It’s like it was made for me.

Me: Cory! Cory! Can we go to this marriage retreat?

Cory: Urgh. Why? (he obvious does not have the same fascination with marriage that I do)

Me: So we can mantain our marriage. D’oh. Seriously, we shouldn’t wait till something is wrong with our marriage before going to all of this. By then, it will be too late. You know, I read in some magazine…

Cory: Oh, magazine. That is a legitamate source of information.

Me: Shut up. Anyway, this therapist said that by the time most married couples come to her for help, it’s already too late to save their marriage because they used her as a last resort.

Cory: But we don’t have problems with our marriage. (At this point he is really confused)

Me: Yes… but would you wait until you have a problem with your car or do you mantain it by getting it’s oil change when it is suppose to.

Cory: But we just got married. We are going to be the only couple there under the age of 40!

So rats, marriage retreat is a no go. But that leads me to wonder what am I doing to mantain my marriage? Daily, weekly, monthly, without the help of group discussions (this is what Cory really deplores) and retreats. Mom subscribes to all these boring magazines and the singular article I enjoy reading is the “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” article in one of those magazines where they profile a married couple going through issues and at the brink of divorce. Then they dissect the couples’ marriage and go through therapy and everyone is now normal and happy and loving and thus, another marriage saved. However, I know that is not always the case (actually, I think, it is most often not the case). I have no idea where I was going with that except to say, I don’t want my marriage to be a success story (saved from the brink of divorce) in magazine article. I never want to get to that point.

What about you? Wait till it is broken? Mantain?

More importantly, whose side are you on? Team Jesselyn – go to marriage retreat. Team Cory – wait till we are married for, like, 10 years first. No brownie points taken away for not being on my team. (You might get hate mail though. Just kidding!)

 

* free-cycle: where you put the couch on the curb with a sign that says “free!” because inevitably someone needs a couch that they don’t want to pay for no matter how beat up it is.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. March 23, 2010 12:05 am

    Go marriage retreat! it could be really great and a chance to meet new people, learn new things, get new experiences (maybe they will teach you pottery, or archery or something cool!). if it’s weird, most likely it will be immediately obvious for both of you. you can leave and it will be like getting a bonus weekend (or day or whatever) because you had planned to be doing the marriage retreat and you will probably end up doing something great. i would recommend spending the day in a arcade/pool hall! super fun!

  2. March 23, 2010 12:12 am

    Hmmm…

    I don’t think I would consider going to a marriage retreat so soon after getting married. The other people there are probably going to have more problems than you guys, and there’s no point putting a dampener on the honeymoon period now.

    Maybe even at 5 years married?

    I’m a big fan of talking though. The pre-marriage counselling we are going to do involves a questionnaire which you both do and they compare your results. You do it again every year once you are in the system so you can monitor how you’re doing. I like that idea.

  3. March 23, 2010 8:33 am

    “Oh, magazine. That is a legitamate source of information.”

    Did you marry my fiancee?

    Im not married, but we have been together almost 5 years. I find making time for dates (real, dress up and go out dates) and nights in alone, even if you could go out with others, help us maintain

  4. Jodie permalink
    March 23, 2010 10:28 am

    How about reading a book together? I like The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work and If the Buddha Married (if you’re into Buddhist philosophy). I’ve been reading them with my FIANCE! Luckily for me, he’s into the maintenance thing. Some of the content in the books don’t really apply NOW, because we really do have a good relationship, but it opens dialogue on how to prevent certain problems and also opens our eyes to some bad habits we have stemming from growing up or past love relationships. Ask your man, I don’t think it can hurt!

  5. March 23, 2010 12:47 pm

    I say look into the marriage retreat and see if the classes/discussions/activities seem like they would benefit you and go from there. I’m all about this stuff too, but Ryan’s more of a “why fix it if it isn’t broken” type of guy, so I am shut down 100% of the time.

  6. March 23, 2010 2:05 pm

    I’m pro retreat…and fortunately my hubby is too…we both have the mentality that we’ll do what ever we can to enhance/maintain/better our marriage…however, I don’t think most men think that way. Before marriage we went through some relationship books together, now, we pray and dream together.

  7. March 27, 2010 5:00 pm

    I vote retreat!

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