Monday, July 29, 2013

Marriage and Family Lesson Handout

The topic for Young Women's in August is all about marriage and family. 
How appropriate since later this month Roger and I will be celebrating our 18th Anniversary. 
I've officially been married for half of my life.

" she gonna be this cheesy all the time?"

Mere babies. Is what we were.

When you get to talking about something that gets as romanticized as marriage does, I think it's important for us as leaders to keep things in perspective and reality based.
Yes, we have dreams and plans about the way things will be when we "grow up" and what kind of man we'll marry: how tall he'll be. How he'll propose. How many babies you'll have.
99% of the time, real life doesn't *quite* match up to the way we thought it would in our teenage mind. The ceremony happens, and months later the sparkle that once dazzled you is just a mere memory. Your fantasy life is replaced with bills, job stresses, and sweatpants. If he was meant to be your forever companion, why are there so many issues?

What am I doing wrong?

We are all imperfect people, so it is inevitable that issues will arise, no matter how "perfectly matched" (cringe!) two lovers may be. Enter one of my favorite quotes.

 Oops- not that one.
This one.

"Anyone who imagines that BLISS is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around, shouting that he's been robbed. The fact is most putts don't drop, most beef is tough, most children grow up to be just people, and most marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration.

Life is like an old time rail journey...delays...smoke, dust...insterspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thanking the Lord for letting you have the ride."

{you can download or print this handout here}

What's the best marriage advice you've ever received?


  1. Well said. And I can totally agree about things not turning out as my teenage self had thought. I thought I'd be married by 25 but the way it ended up being for me, I was almost 40.And I also never got the opportunity for children. Things definitely don't turn out as a young girl thinks!
    I have been married for 6 years, we've been together for 12 and things are still pretty good although definitely not always easy.

    Thanks for sharing

    1. Exactly!

      We were just talking to the girls about how everyone's path will be different. Some will be married young, some older, some never get the chance at all. Just because your life doesn't follow the same timeline as your best friend/sister/cousin, it doesn't mean you're doing something wrong. We should embrace our individual journeys because they are just that: individual.

    2. Thanks for your reply. PS You guys look so good together now and then!

  2. Love it, Rebecca! I might just have to use this next month as I'm planning YW lessons... :)

  3. Basically to think before you speak. The advice was along the lines of be careful who you badmouth your spouse to; not all fights need to be shared and vented about. The example used was not going to your mothers to complain about something your spouse had done. Moms will remember that stuff later and relationships will suffer.

    I read historic romance novels, and I can't tell you how many times I've thought "it's a good thing these people are rich and have a fleet of servants, because I don't believe they could survive job stress, paying bills and three kids who all get sick one right after the other."

    1. Yes, yes, yes! Somehow teens have the idea that having a baby can fix everything and brings you closer together. Ha! If you can't figure out how to get along before the kiddos, there is no hope for dealing with stress when you haven't had sleep in months and there's the constant background soundtrack of a child {or children} screaming.

      Or so I've heard.

  4. Oh Rebecca, I found this post so wise and also "wisor" as you wrote so authentically it's clear this came directly from your heart. Best advice I've been given: 1) although it's natural to think in terms of "I'm not getting what I want / need" once you're married you need to train your brain to follow your heart and think in terms of "we're missing out on ...", and 2) when you just want to shout and cry, don't ... you need to treat yourself like a crying baby, swaddle yourself, hold yourself, calm yourself, give the "baby" the attention it needs because only you can - not someone else, and once your adult self can share what was going on {in a caring and loving way} sit down with your partner and have an earnest discussion. Robin

    1. #1: agreed. Once you're married it's about what you're bringing to the relationship, not what you're getting out of it. HUGE difference.

      #2: I've never heard the baby thing before. Love it. I have never thought of myself as a baby before, but I *have* succeeded in throwing some academy award winning toddler tantrums over the course of 18 years.

  5. Cute and fun to see someone else's perspective on this topic. Thanks for sharing. I love that handout and that quote, I've read it several times before. Got any advice for teaching Beehives about chastity? EEKs, that is what I'm doing this Sunday! lol

  6. My mother-in-law shared some of the best advice to me. She said, "No matter how long you're married, you're never gonna think alike." In other words, there will always be disagreements -- and that's okay! Just because you disagree about certain things does NOT mean that you are headed for divorce. Marriage won't always be sunshine and rainbows, but it doesn't mean your relationship is weak.

    1. Did she also say that you could blame her for that? ;) Great advice. I've never met ANYONE (man OR woman) that thought like me 100% of the time. How boring would that be? As long as the most important priorities are in line with each other, the other stuff is just stuff.

  7. Ok first. You ARE a T1.
    Second, you are sooooo right. (as if you questioned that?)
    Third, you are now a 'no-reply commenter', so I can't reply to your delicious comments on my blog. Boo.

  8. When I was younger I had an idea that I would be married and have my kids by the time I was 30 yrs old. To say the least, my 30th birthday was the worst one ever!!!! I got married when I was 32 and had my kids at 34 and 36. Now we've been married for 25 yrs and of course there are still bumps in the road, but I have to say, it was a marriage worth waiting for. Expectations and dreams are wonderful, but usually things aren't what you expect. It is work to be married, but it's a wonderful job to have.

  9. The best advice I received was, people change. Never expect the one you're with to stay the same as when you met. You have to keep falling in love with that person, every new year, new month, new week, new day.


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