Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What Makes a Good Marriage

When you're in the throes of wedding planning, it can be easy to get caught up in the question: What makes a good wedding? After all, pretty much every wedding blog has an answer to that question.

I think, though, that we need to spend a lot more time asking and talking about this question: What makes a good marriage?

It's a question I think about a lot. Matt and I are always working to make our marriage stronger, more loving, more appreciative, more fun--it's definitely a work in progress.

We also work really hard to make our marriage equal. As soon as Matt and I moved in together, we started putting systems in place to distribute household responsibilities equitably. We tend to cook dinner and clean up afterwards together, but we divide our chores up into even chunks. We also gave a lot of thought to combining our finances in a way that felt fair and collaborative. Regardless of who is bringing in more income, we each get the same amount of personal money to spend every month. We've tried to come up with systems that work for us.

The addition of Henry in our lives has made the equal distribution of responsibilities even more difficult. When I wrote about it on my personal blog, Feeding the Soil, a kindred spirit shared this article about equality within families.

It's a fascinating read. I highly recommend it!

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Anonymous said...

When getting engaged I made sure that my fiance and I did what was important first. Before, I could plan a wedding I had to plan for a marriage. My fiance and I made sure that we met with our priest and started our marriage preparation classes before we made any wedding plans. Once, we took care of what was important then we could start our wedding planning. Getting married isn't about just planning for a wedding. A wedding is just one day. A marriage is a life time. Why not plan for a perfect marriage rather than a perfect wedding? Ever since my fiance and I have met with my priest, things have been great. I'm learning a lot about marriage and a lot of things about my fiance. Now, I feel I can plan my wedding. Anyone, who gets engaged should plan for their marriage first. Then plan for their wedding second.

-Jodi :)

Nicole said...

Thanks for posting this article, Sara. Having grown up with straight parents whose traditional gender roles caused a lot of hurt in our family, I'm always glad when I straight couples are having these conversations.

I have been thinking a lot about the article's inclusion of studies of household duties in lesbian relationships. I was happy to see an LGBTQIA perspective represented, but there was something in the way the dynamics of the lesbian relationships were discussed that worried me. Specifically, I am troubled by the researcher's hypothesis that lesbians share household responsibility more equitably because women are better communicators. While there may be some evidence to support this, I think it is an irresponsible conclusion that leaves straight women with little hope for an equal partnership.

From what I read about you and Matt, it sounds like you are both invested in communicating about all aspects of your partnership. And for this I applaud you and I thank you for sharing your journey publicly. I would guess that the reason lesbian couples are more equitable in their relationships because lesbians in general are committed to equality writ large, and this informs the choices they make in their relationships. Thus, equitable relationships are not only possible for LGBTQIA folks, but for anyone who is committed to making considerations of equity a part of their daily lives.

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