Ep. 8: What Does He Learn From His Marriage?
“What were we thinking?” says my friend in response to my asking him what he’s learned from his 15 year marriage, “We had it all when we were younger, had all the freedom in the world, and we chose to end it by getting married. It’s still fun and I’ve been happily married, but now I have to be patient and calm and more understanding and it’s just different now.”
The definition of marriage has changed over the years but essentially it has become a partnership between two people who choose to make that partnership legal.
Unless you are lucky enough to grow and change together, most of us could use a “dress rehearsal” marriage to figure out who we are and what really matters to us, and how to compromise and share a life with someone.
Some of us manage to make a pretty good go of it, but regardless of whether you stay married or not, there is plenty to be learned from walking down the aisle.
I know how much I learned from being married, but what exactly do men learn from their marriages?
So we asked the question:
“What Have You Learned From Your Marriage?”
“Not to be an asshole. I need to be patient and have some humility. Life is way more fun when I get to share it with a partner. She brings out the best in me so I’ve learned to do these things because I’d rather be with her than be alone and stubborn.”- A 57-year-old Writer from Philadelphia, PA married for 31 years.
A 47-year-old Physician from England married for 8 years shared: “Men are from Mars and women are from Venus. It takes two people to make it right and two to screw it up. It’s never just about me.”
“There is nothing better than a great marriage or union between two people. In order to keep things going well, someone has to monitor when the relationship starts to go down a bad road. Once you start going down that road, there’s no turning back. The trick is to catch it and stop it immediately. If you allow yourself to start throwing things at each other and dropping ‘F’ bombs, it becomes tough to turn that around.”- A 50-year old Photographer from Miami married 25 years.
“I’m newly married but I’ve already learned that if I’m just there for her when she needs me and if I help out, she is much happier and I’m much happier. Things feel good and there’s no resentment lurking behind the scenes.”-A 37 year-old medical device representative from South Florida married 2 years.
Marriage is one experience in life that has the ability to teach us so many lessons and it seems that men learn a great deal from their marriages as well.
A 48-year-old entrepreneur from California married for 6 years said: “I’ve learned that I need her.”
“I think you have to learn to validate a woman’s issues and concerns and also to accept the person for who they are, not who you want them to be. I’ve also learned that I got really lucky finding my wife and I constantly try to remember that.” –A 36-year old college recruiter from South Florida married for 5 years.
“I’ve learned that I need to be present, both emotionally and physically, in order for it to work. It’s a give and take for sure but you want to have the right expectations when you enter into a marriage. You should never get married expecting that the other person should be responsible for your happiness.” –A 34-year old sales representative from Northeast Philadelphia married for 4 years.
Throughout my interviews, I found that men have learned plenty from their marriages and they have some fabulous advice to share.
Whether they’ve been married for two years or twenty-five years, they all seem to realize how important it is to validate their partner’s feelings and to be patient, present and understanding.
Marriage has a way of teaching us exactly what it is that we need to learn and for most of us, it appears that we can learn a great deal about our partners and ourselves.
So whether we realize it or not, when we walk down the aisle, we are signing up for a lifetime of lessons.
Hopefully we are paying attention.