|For No Reason|
I'm often asked by no one just how it is that [Maris] and I have such a ridiculously, effortlessly, splendidly wonderful marriage. Well, I would be asked that, if people could move past their shock and, in some cases, disappointment at the fact that we've made it beyond the year they all gave us - almost thirteen times over, at this point. Let me tell you, it hasn't been easy. Relationships are hard work. Hahaha, what? Oh, if I had a nickel for every time I've heard that. Rubbish! Relationships can be hard work. Ours is not. Why is this so? I've thought about this for a very long time - over an hour, now - and I've come up with the answer to that question.
It boils down to five simple steps that any man can take to ensure his mate's happiness - and therefore a smooth and loving relationship.
1. Be with the Right Person. Notice I said "be with" and not "find." Being with is easy. Finding - I have no idea how to go about finding. I know this sounds simplistic and easy for me to say and well, stupid, but it really is just about the only thing that makes it all go. I've been in a few relationships, some of which were really good - one of which was a short marriage to a wonderful woman - and I can tell you that any one of them could have been made to work, but only [Maris] was - and is - the Right Person for me, making this the right relationship.
Now, before you even get started - yes, I know this is a ludicrously oversimplified view of relationships. I'm only keeping it this way to make a point. I hear so much bitching about lazy, immature husbands/boyfriends, and so much grumbling about nagging wives/girlfriends. Power struggles, conflicting interests, recurring arguments and on and on and on... Here's the thing. Some people need that. Others can't stand it, and would rather die than fight. When I say be with the Right Person, I'm not saying be with someone who never disagrees with you, any more than I'd say be with someone who is your total opposite. I'm saying be on the same page. If you both need to be with a complementary opposite, do that. If you need to agree on as much as humanly possible, that's cool, too. As long as you're both on the same page.
2. See #1.
3. Grow up. You can't know if your mate is right for you if you don't know yourself, and you can't know yourself - at least, not very well - until you grow up. Sorry. It is the way of things.
4. Flowers. Anniversary flowers, event flowers, "just because" flowers, and flower flowers. Even flowers from the grocery store florist count, if you get them often enough. Unless she hates flowers, in which case we can broaden this rule to "stuff she likes." Find out what she likes, and DO THAT. If she likes rummaging through the city dump, guess what. If she enjoys GRILLED food every night, then get grilling, buddy. If she likes lasers and electric guitars, do this:
This is not rocket science. Well, not if you've followed step #1. I know that even in 2013, there are a lot of men who will scoff at that, and call me unpleasant words like "whipped." This amuses me, because really, why wouldn't you want a happy woman? They tend to be just SO much more fun than the unhappy ones. Is it me? It must be me.
5. Understand and accept that happiness is never guaranteed. No matter how perfect the match, no matter how meant it is to be, no one can be happy all the time. If your mate is happy all the time, there is something wrong with him or her, and professional help should be sought immediately. Just try to keep the naturally-occurring bits of unhappiness to a reasonable minimum, fight against the external forces of meh as a team, and follow the steps above to ensure that said unhappy bits are not your fault. Actually, they can be your fault every once in a great while - it happens. Also, remember that happiness is a journey, not a destination. This is true when one is alone, and so too is it the case with couples. It sounds simple, I know - like a cheesy motivational poster at work - but it is absolutely true. You never arrive at happy. You either are or you aren't.
There. If you study these simple steps, practice hard, and send 10 new visitors to my blog, you too can have a happy woman. Wow - relationship advice is easy!
Finally, if all else fails, there's a secret bonus step...
6. Marry [Maris]. Ha! Too late! Mine, mine, mine! Seriously, though - being with the Right One really does make all of the above just ridiculously easy.
This post started around the idea of how my wife's love of GRILLED food plays right to one of my strengths. It was prompted by my amazing fellow bloggers at STUDIO THIRTY PLUS.