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Single Ladies - Please Lift A Finger


Messenger

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With all the emphasis on the last conference about there being way too many unmarried people out there, it would seem that most of the talks center on the men not stepping up. I have to say that many of us single, and yes, a menace to the 'married' society, have stepped up many many many many times. I propose that since marriage is a shared responsibility, and all men and women must 'prepare' for the future, I would hope that future talk among the LDS would include instructions for women as well. From my perspective, being a returned missionary, a college graduate, and certainly successful in my career, I have found the 'ladies' that are my age and not married.... are wanting. They seem to want the men to spend their life pining for them or die miserably. Further, I can say from personal experience, that a mere temple marriage to a good LDS lady, does not translate into celestial eternal life or even happiness. In my opinion, there should be more balance in the pre-marriage rituals in order to have long lasting, sustainable balance in the post marriage relationship. Further, I would be happy to give up my truck, “with the big wheels” for a minivan if the ladies would at least try to lift a finger once in a while without making horrible complaining noises. When I got divorced my best investment was one of those new quiet dishwashers. Don’t get me wrong, I love the ladies, but shared responsibility, not resistibility is an eternal principle. After all, what are they waiting for?

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I have a single sister.

Your woe is what everyone before you has experienced. I share in your view point, eternal marriage is a shared responsibility. That males should be the ones doing the persueing is a tired foolish tradition. If a person wants to be married that person should be out intelligently and purposefully dating and that means that person is initiating the dates.

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I empathize, Messenger. Many grown women, much less young girls, have this romantic image of what love should be. There is a movie called "Crossing Delancey" about a young woman attracted to the exciting, worldly writer. She finds out almost too late what a jerk he is and realizes the shy man who had a very unattractive job, but adored her, was what she really wanted. There is a valuable lesson there.

Having said that I know too many young men who are irresponsible, like their "freedom" and don't treat women with care. I mean when you talk on your cell phone to a friend while on a date there is something very inconsiderate.

Speaking as someone who has been single for a very long time, I know how difficult it is for women and I've heard my male friends make the same kind of complaints. Hollywood and Harlequin romances have pretty much messed us all up, but so have cell phones, sound bites and on-line communication in lieu of real life conversation.

My suggestion is to find the quiet, shy young woman who doesn't date much and treat her with the greatest consideration and care.

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I will never pursue a man. I may make an invitation to a date, but I would do so with the idea of just enjoying an activity with some companionship.

In my experience, men do not commit to projects (including marriage) that they do not "own" (their idea, their motivation, etc).

I do not want to be an "unowned" project.

My fiance, day-in-and-day-out, has been and continues to pursue me--man, I feel pursued and it's awesome! What *I* do is make sure that he is 100 percent received by me. I do my best to make sure that whenever he approaches me as a human being and as a man, I am completely open to him and accept and acknowledge who he is and what he does for me.

This took some time in the beginning of our relationship, since I had to learn to know him and trust him, so he did have some rejection experiences from me (which I was experiencing as protection experiences or the sense that if I stepped onto the "bridge" of him, he would crumble--never happened). But since we've come through these experiences, I think it would be wrong of me to keep re-visiting my (unfounded) fears, but rather to keep confirming that what he does for me is perfect and take my fears to the Lord.

As far as expectations of romantic love, as a 40 year old widow, I squashed all those things in myself a long time ago, knowing that life is long and there was not going to be that as part of my life whether married or no. I have tried to be satisfied being a human being and finding someone to "work well together", and be the best person like that I could be also.

The trouble is that my fiance keeps behaving in a way--day-in-and-day-out--that I am the queen of his life. This covers a lot of ground, everything from consulting my advice to little gifts for occasions (I don't know how to take that! ha ha). So MY trouble hasn't been figuring out how to have a working, equal relationship (we do), but it has been trying to figure out how just to "sit back" and let him enjoy smothering me with love and giving him the gift of the happy look on my face! It's not as easy as it sounds at this stage in my life!

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... MY trouble hasn't been figuring out how to have a working, equal relationship (we do), but it has been trying to figure out how just to "sit back" and let him enjoy smothering me with love and giving him the gift of the happy look on my face! It's not as easy as it sounds at this stage in my life!

Sounds like a nice problem to have! ;):D

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Having said that I know too many young men who are irresponsible, like their "freedom" and don't treat women with care. I mean when you talk on your cell phone to a friend while on a date there is something very inconsiderate.

Speaking as someone who has been single for a very long time, I know how difficult it is for women and I've heard my male friends make the same kind of complaints. Hollywood and Harlequin romances have pretty much messed us all up, but so have cell phones, sound bites and on-line communication in lieu of real life conversation.

Lots of 'young' men, I suppose do take their freedom, their toys, their friends, much to seriously. But I also know a lot of women, who when pursued by a good man, who holds the priesthood honorably, simply spurn every attempt - not just one or two, but many. The last lady I dated for about three months, on every date would say how the men in her life never show any interest in her or dating. She was so miffed by her past experience, she couldn’t see that I was interested in her, and had been for quite sometime and quite a few dates. She eventually shut the door on us and said that all men were alike. I, having never raised my voice, treating her with absolute respect, and always having wonderful gospel conversations, was put in the same category as some of the other men in her life. In the end, you get what you give. If nothing is given back - not even acknowledgement of the effort, which will never turn into a relationship. For if it did, it would be a relationship of one - and in my opinion, being single would be far more preferable.

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So MY trouble hasn't been figuring out how to have a working, equal relationship (we do), but it has been trying to figure out how just to "sit back" and let him enjoy smothering me with love and giving him the gift of the happy look on my face! It's not as easy as it sounds at this stage in my life!

If I understand you correctly, and correct me if I am wrong, you are trying to figure out a way to sit back and let him do all the smothering? This would never work for me if my wife did this. However, I do concede it works for some.

My best friend's wife, to whom he has been married now for many years, seems to be always upset all the time. He catches it when he is home, and I catch it when I visit. So I only visit when he is there, and take many deep breaths before I enter his home.

To be honest, most of the ladies I date for 3-4 months, and have an attraction to, tend to own all of the relationship to the point that I have nothing invested in it, so its real easy to walk. I suppose it works the otherway around for the guys as well. Those that are cell phone chatting, polishing wheels, or riding ATVs, could put thier relationship 2nd. Perhaps both need to find a way to look for the better one who is better behaved.

But my point is that BOTH have to work at it, at least in the relationship that I want.

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In the end, you get what you give. If nothing is given back - not even acknowledgement of the effort, which will never turn into a relationship. For if it did, it would be a relationship of one - and in my opinion, being single would be far more preferable.

I think this is one problem with putting off getting married until one is older. By that time, one has developed pretty strong perceptions of what the world is and habits of response that can be hard to break when something new appears. It takes a lot of energy to treat each experience as something unique in and of itself because that takes attention to detail and thoughtful action. Much easier to run on autopilot for the day to day stuff. Unfortunately some people have done this so much that they have a very hard time switching to 'manual' when it comes to the unusual stuff and thus they turn everything into something mundane and ordinary and same old, same old.

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Some women are materialistic and/or drama queens, some guys are mistreatful and committed to the wrong things-I say that because I went HT to a young couple and he plays video games with other friends like almost every night (not me, I don't care for video games one whit)-she may in turn look to other things to fill in the gap and then they just keep getting pulled apart and could break up, dunno.

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I think this is one problem with putting off getting married until one is older. By that time, one has developed pretty strong perceptions of what the world is and habits of response that can be hard to break when something new appears. It takes a lot of energy to treat each experience as something unique in and of itself because that takes attention to detail and thoughtful action. Much easier to run on autopilot for the day to day stuff. Unfortunately some people have done this so much that they have a very hard time switching to 'manual' when it comes to the unusual stuff and thus they turn everything into something mundane and ordinary and same old, same old.

Well, Im sure there are people, single adults of both gender who have put off marriage. Certainly your point of being on autopilot can be true, to both married and unmarried. The more we see something, the more we ingore its details and its easy to pre-judge. For me, I've not put marriage off, but have already been married and sealed then divorced. I dont have a temple divorce and feel that I have at least gave it a good shot when I was younger, and continue to date now. But I have found, no matter how open minded I am, some sort of event of hate, and from my perspective (a hate of men in general) to such a proportion is eventually what discontinues the relationship.

Certainly, this can't always be true forever. But it has been my collective experience over the last 15 years.

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Well, Im sure there are people, single adults of both gender who have put off marriage. Certainly your point of being on autopilot can be true, to both married and unmarried. The more we see something, the more we ingore its details and its easy to pre-judge. For me, I've not put marriage off, but have already been married and sealed then divorced. I dont have a temple divorce and feel that I have at least gave it a good shot when I was younger, and continue to date now. But I have found, no matter how open minded I am, some sort of event of hate, and from my perspective (a hate of men in general) to such a proportion is eventually what discontinues the relationship.

Certainly, this can't always be true forever. But it has been my collective experience over the last 15 years.

Hopefully things will change for you and sooner rather than later.
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Hopefully things will change for you and sooner rather than later.

Sooner than later? Actually I'm not rushed, despite your apparent message. I think marriage should be carefully thought out and have its roots in a very strong preliminary dating relationship. Since I do that, I’m not at all concerned. Further, since I am sealed, that box is already checked off. Really, where people fail is when they don’t consider the first steps or even do the steps. Now, rushing or pushing someone into marriage might have a benefit for certain people who simply put it off, or are dating and cant commit, but I sincerely hope that the interpretation of the message here is that all single people cant be happy and be a strong member at the same time. That’s simply not true for all of us. I have never felt miserable or alone in being single. In fact, when I contrast my life with being married once, I can tell you that not only am I a happier person, I'm much closer to Heavenly Father, had many more callings, and never been stronger in the priesthood as I am now in my post marriage, single years.

When I became a High Priest at 45 years old, I didn’t get any calling along with it. I was simply ready for the next step. When a so called friend of the opposite sex heard about it, just prior to the stake conference announcing it, she approached the stake president with many people around, and declared that I was not ready. I was not upset in the slightest, but I was surprised that she really didn’t know me. She was projecting her experience with men, particularly her ex-husband, on me. The stake president looked at her, in the eye, and said he is 100% worthy, and ready to be a High Priest.

I do very much enjoy going to single adult activities and dating on occasion and the people I meet are very happy. Should they continue to pursue an eternal marriage? Yes, but there are plenty of General Authorities that have spoken on the subject of falling short of living with Heavenly Father - Specifically they have spoken on Grace. Isn’t it amazing how the Gospel Principles are true, despite our own short-sightedness or prejudice?

Let’s be clear about the messages that are sent from the church….

Divorce

By Dallin H. Oaks

Source: http://lds.org/general-conference/2007/04/divorce?lang=eng&query=Divorce

"There are many good Church members who have been divorced. I speak first to them. We know that many of you are innocent victims—members whose former spouses persistently betrayed sacred covenants or abandoned or refused to perform marriage responsibilities for an extended period. Members who have experienced such abuse have firsthand knowledge of circumstances worse than divorce. When a marriage is dead and beyond hope of resuscitation, it is needful to have a means to end it. “

From this can we assume that all marriage isn’t always better than being divorced and single?

Singles in the Ward Family

Kathy Grant

Source: http://lds.org/ensign/2002/06/singles-in-the-ward-family?lang=eng&query=single

“Ward activities should be planned in such a way that they do not exclude or embarrass single members. Activities can be planned for “adults” and “ward members” rather than just “couples” or “families.” And without downplaying the importance of marriage and families, ward members can help singles feel more included by making sure talks and lessons don’t regularly apply exclusively to those with spouses or children and don’t devalue those who are single.”

From this can we understand that single members should be included into the ward family and welcomed?

Desire

Dallin H. Oaks

Source: http://lds.org/general-conference/2011/04/desire?lang=eng&query=single

“I close with a final example of a desire that should be paramount for all men and women—those who are currently married and those who are single. All should desire and seriously work to secure a marriage for eternity. Both men and women need righteous desires that will lead them to eternal life”

Can we conclude that the responsiblity should be a shared one?

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everyone has some kind of sense of entitlement in a relationship, as evidenced herein this discussion. some people will find someone who will indulge that entitlement.

When a relationship works it will work, when a relationship doesn't work it doesn't work. i know that is cliche, but it seems the truth. And when someone in a relationship/dating wants to stop dating a person the person being dumped just needs to accept it and move. It has been my experience that a gentle goodbye can easily and quickly turn to "woman hating" or "man hating" because the dumper wasn't simply told by the dumpee "I will honor your decision and will not contact you further for dates. I will be neighborly to you in all aspects of life, and I wish you well on your journey".

there are things about dating that are just not pleasant at all. I

Yes, the responsibility is on both male and female. A female will not be excluded from the Celestial Kingdom because she was the one who proposed marriage, and a male will not be excluded from the Celestial Kingdom because he marry the woman who proposed to him.

We already know what will is asked of us to make it to the Celestial Kingdom, focus on those things and ignore the nonesense of life and dating.

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I can relate to what you said maidservant. I was never interested in dating a guy who didn't have the courage to acknowledge that he was interested in me. Nothing against shy guys, and i'm not saying that there's anything wrong with the girl doing the pursuing. I'm saying that I personally did not want to be invovled with a guy who didn't have the guts to go after what he wanted. I wanted that trait (of being courageous) in the kind of man that i married (and, i got it so it all worked out well).

Besides that though, i think that when the apostles and prophets talk about men needing to do a better job at courting women, they are speaking to a very specific kind of guy. In my student ward growing up, there were 4 of them-all over 25, all returned missionaries with good jobs, basically active in the church but never went the extra mile (they would show up and sit in the back, talk through sacrament meeting, that kind of thing), and spent lots of time making out with various 18 year olds but never had a steady girlfriend the 2 years that i knew them.

THOSE are the kind of men that i think of when i hear those talks-the kind that still act like they are 18 when they should have matured beyond that long ago. The ones who are afraid of responsibility.

I don't think the GA's mean those men who are doing their best and working toward that goal.

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Here's my experience...

I lost my dear hubby when I was 58... about a year afterward some friends from Church asked me if I would be willing to meet with a single male friend of theirs who was 60 and had just lost his lady friend to cancer and was grieving. They thought I could help since I had been through it. So I agreed... but I made them promise not to leave me alone with him (I don't know what I was expecting). My friends and another couple and I all met at a local restaurant to await "Alan", and I was surprised to see this tall, handsome, silver haired gentleman sit down across from me... We started to talk and I asked him if he was a person of faith (because how one approaches death is usually dependent upon our spiritual views). Turns out he was Jewish, but we had some common ground on many levels and we talked and talked about all manner of topics, with "death" woven in and out. Anyway, my friends said they had to be leaving and I said, Okay, see you later... Ha! Anyway, that was the beginning of a wonderful friendship. "Alan" respected my faith and attended some Church functions with me, etc. But he was a confirmed bachelor so it didn't look like that relationship was going toward marriage... and I wanted an LDS husband if possible. Eventually he had to leave this area... we still care for each other and talk by phone/email several times a month although I haven't seen him in 7 years.

Now I am 70... and I've been alone so long that I have come to love living alone. I don't have to worry about anyone (except Bob the cat). I can come and go as I please. I can stand at an easel all day and not have to answer to anyone. I have a Church family that provides me with spiritual and social comfort. My home teachers are faithful in visiting me... as are my VT. I am alone, but not lonely.

What do I miss? I miss the blessings of family... children... grandchildren... I've never felt the joy of a child calling me Mommy. I feel a twinge in my heart when I see families at Church... but... nothing I can do about it, so I don't let myself dwell on that aspect. I am truly blessed in many ways. But there is a certain time of evening that I can feel a melancholy, just as the sun is going down. So I grab up Bob and say a prayer of gratitude... that I am where I am... that I am me... that my dear Ray waits for me, and I know I will walk at his side in the eternities...

from the beach... GG

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I was told years ago by my YSA Bishop at the time that you can't be happy unless you're married and the thing is is that I bought it hook line and sinker. I remember thinking that I am just not allowed to be happy and that is how it was for me. I was never happy being married, I just wasn't, I love the Temple but getting sealed and then coming out 30 minutes later or however long it was I wasn't radically transformed into some now happy guy. Now, I believe that you should be happy before marriage, it is too much pressure for someone else to make you happy. You don't need permission from anyone. I think you should be happy with someone.

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Now, I believe that you should be happy before marriage, it is too much pressure for someone else to make you happy.

I agree. You also should be best friends when you get married so that you still have something when the shine wears off.

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Sounds like a nice problem to have! ;):D

My point :yahoo: .

Lots of 'young' men, I suppose do take their freedom, their toys, their friends, much to seriously. But I also know a lot of women, who when pursued by a good man, who holds the priesthood honorably, simply spurn every attempt - not just one or two, but many. The last lady I dated for about three months, on every date would say how the men in her life never show any interest in her or dating. She was so miffed by her past experience, she couldn’t see that I was interested in her, and had been for quite sometime and quite a few dates. She eventually shut the door on us and said that all men were alike. I, having never raised my voice, treating her with absolute respect, and always having wonderful gospel conversations, was put in the same category as some of the other men in her life. In the end, you get what you give. If nothing is given back - not even acknowledgement of the effort, which will never turn into a relationship. For if it did, it would be a relationship of one - and in my opinion, being single would be far more preferable.

People in pain unfortunately often operate behaviorally from that pain. We can understand them, but I agree that it doesn't mean we have to make that part of our lives. Life is too short. I also have to recognize how I can possibly sabotage myself. I think women need to acknowledge that men really get hurt badly by women, and men need to realize that women really get hurt badly by men. It hurts like crazy, and it IS hard to think past that because you certainly don't want that level of pain to happen again. Takes a great deal of maturity to do anything else, which is where we hope we are all at when it comes to marriage.

If I understand you correctly, and correct me if I am wrong, you are trying to figure out a way to sit back and let him do all the smothering? This would never work for me if my wife did this. However, I do concede it works for some.

My best friend's wife, to whom he has been married now for many years, seems to be always upset all the time. He catches it when he is home, and I catch it when I visit. So I only visit when he is there, and take many deep breaths before I enter his home.

To be honest, most of the ladies I date for 3-4 months, and have an attraction to, tend to own all of the relationship to the point that I have nothing invested in it, so its real easy to walk. I suppose it works the otherway around for the guys as well. Those that are cell phone chatting, polishing wheels, or riding ATVs, could put thier relationship 2nd. Perhaps both need to find a way to look for the better one who is better behaved.

But my point is that BOTH have to work at it, at least in the relationship that I want.

I can see how my sentence structure was unclear. What I am saying is that my fiance is behaving in ways I could not imagine and stopped expecting. It was not what I wanted or asked for. I expected to be a partner. I am surprised to find out I'm a sweetheart and that he doesn't expect much from me except to be myself, which is just really wierd. My point is that I am trying to receive him wholeheartedly and make sure he knows that his love makes a difference in my life and do him the courtesy of not expecting much except that he be himself, also. And I don't know what, ha ha, him "smothering me with love" has to do with the possibility of me being upset with him, quite the opposite I would say. In other words, we already work together well, solve problems, I even enjoy fighting with him (we use our communication skills and affirm our love, etc, ha ha), show respect to what we both need, etc. All of this I can handle, even though honestly all this stuff is new to me too as my previous relationship didn't have it. What I have a hard time handling is when he makes it clear that he just thinks I'm cute and he wants to spend time with me. Wow! And for the record, I will not marry a man with whom I have to work at a relationship, that means I'm in the wrong relationship. Be an adult with mature and thoughtful adult behaviors and care for the welfare of the other? Yes. Be merciful, selfless, long-suffering and forgiving? Yes. Work at it? No. But that's just my philosophy, I know many will disagree.

Here's my experience...

I lost my dear hubby when I was 58... about a year afterward some friends from Church asked me if I would be willing to meet with a single male friend of theirs who was 60 and had just lost his lady friend to cancer and was grieving. They thought I could help since I had been through it. So I agreed... but I made them promise not to leave me alone with him (I don't know what I was expecting). My friends and another couple and I all met at a local restaurant to await "Alan", and I was surprised to see this tall, handsome, silver haired gentleman sit down across from me... We started to talk and I asked him if he was a person of faith (because how one approaches death is usually dependent upon our spiritual views). Turns out he was Jewish, but we had some common ground on many levels and we talked and talked about all manner of topics, with "death" woven in and out. Anyway, my friends said they had to be leaving and I said, Okay, see you later... Ha! Anyway, that was the beginning of a wonderful friendship. "Alan" respected my faith and attended some Church functions with me, etc. But he was a confirmed bachelor so it didn't look like that relationship was going toward marriage... and I wanted an LDS husband if possible. Eventually he had to leave this area... we still care for each other and talk by phone/email several times a month although I haven't seen him in 7 years.

Now I am 70... and I've been alone so long that I have come to love living alone. I don't have to worry about anyone (except Bob the cat). I can come and go as I please. I can stand at an easel all day and not have to answer to anyone. I have a Church family that provides me with spiritual and social comfort. My home teachers are faithful in visiting me... as are my VT. I am alone, but not lonely.

What do I miss? I miss the blessings of family... children... grandchildren... I've never felt the joy of a child calling me Mommy. I feel a twinge in my heart when I see families at Church... but... nothing I can do about it, so I don't let myself dwell on that aspect. I am truly blessed in many ways. But there is a certain time of evening that I can feel a melancholy, just as the sun is going down. So I grab up Bob and say a prayer of gratitude... that I am where I am... that I am me... that my dear Ray waits for me, and I know I will walk at his side in the eternities...

from the beach... GG

Lovely story, thank you for sharing :).

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everyone has some kind of sense of entitlement in a relationship, as evidenced herein this discussion. some people will find someone who will indulge that entitlement.

Is there any expectation in marriage that would be justified?

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And for the record, I will not marry a man with whom I have to work at a relationship, that means I'm in the wrong relationship.
I am hoping you mean you wouldn't be in a relationship where you have to force it. But I'm going to say the following because there are people out there with the expectation that love means one never has to 'say one's sorry' or work or anything else besides play and have fun with the beloved.

I've known way too many marriages that have broken up because of the belief that if you have to work at a relationship, it's not really love. Fact is after being decades in a relationship that sounds like it started out very much like yours, my opinion is any relationship that one isn't willing to work for is a wrong relationship. All long term deep relationships will require work as time and circumstances change and you interact with your loved one in new ways, learning about each other over and over and over. My dad and mom, happily married for almost 60 years are still working at their relationship which I am thankful for, there are so many marriages by that time where the marriage is more of a habit than a relationship. When you stop working at anything imo, you stop caring. It is much the same as our personal progression, if we stop working toward our God, we start moving away from him.

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I am hoping you mean you wouldn't be in a relationship where you have to force it. But I'm going to say the following because there are people out there with the expectation that love means one never has to 'say one's sorry' or work or anything else besides play and have fun with the beloved.

I've known way too many marriages that have broken up because of the belief that if you have to work at a relationship, it's not really love. Fact is after being decades in a relationship that sounds like it started out very much like yours, my opinion is any relationship that one isn't willing to work for is a wrong relationship. All long term deep relationships will require work as time and circumstances change and you interact with your loved one in new ways, learning about each other over and over and over. My dad and mom, happily married for almost 60 years are still working at their relationship which I am thankful for, there are so many marriages by that time where the marriage is more of a habit than a relationship. When you stop working at anything imo, you stop caring. It is much the same as our personal progression, if we stop working toward our God, we start moving away from him.

I'm with you cal. I'm married to my best friend and he's been my best friend since we got engaged. He treats me like a queen, has never yelled at me, said a mean word, or called me a name in an argument. He adores me and even after 11 years of marriage he can't keep his hands off of me. I feel the same way about him.

BUT, our marriage is work. It's not drudgery and it's not forced but neither is it effortless. It takes a lot of patience with each other. A lot of forgiveness (because being best friends and deeply in love doesn't mean you never hurt each other's feelings or get annoyed with each other). It takes committment. All of those things is 'work' because they don't happen naturally or automatically.

It's so worth it though.

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Is there any expectation in marriage that would be justified?

many expectations are justified for instance:

love, kindness, charity.

but "expecting" a certain gender to the dishes, laundry, cleaning is not justified. "expecting" and demanding that towels be folded a certain way is not justified. I would also suggest that any engage couple have very open and frank conversation about what they expect about sex.

I think many a newly married have had poor if no, "training" on how to be married. I learned from my sister that if she like creamy peanut butter and I like crunchy, well by gally get both. If I like butter and she like margarine well get both. and the list can go on and on. My sister has mayo and miracle whip in her fridge.....no reason to only get what one person wants and risk causing resentment.

Edited by frankenstein
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At calmoriah's and bluebell's very nice wisdom and stories:

I think I must just have a different conception of what 'work' is . . . that may be the divergence of our opinions.

I do know very well that every ground I am covering with this gentleman is brand new to both him and me and really I won't be able to get back with a final on how this will go until . . . hm, you know, ask me in three years!

Nothing about his and mine relationship has been easy and we have had to exercise a LOT of mercy towards each other. There have been several moments in our relationship (10 months), in fact, that I don't know how we got past them and remained with each other. But with God's help, and with our own willingness to receive each other and forget the other ones' mistakes, we somehow did.

I guess when I think of work, I'm imagining having to work every single day just to get or to convince my husband to keep loving me. I don't have to do that with this man. He made his decision about loving me, and he just carries it out, although he's had plenty of material to work with to change his mind and go in a different direction. So I admit, he is much better at this loving stuff than I am, or, really, he's good in some areas, and I'm good in others, and I think we are picking up on each others' example.

But time will tell :).

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many expectations are justified for instance:

love, kindness, charity.

but "expecting" a certain gender to the dishes, laundry, cleaning is not justified. "expecting" and demanding that towels be folded a certain way is not justified. I would also suggest that any engage couple have very open and frank conversation about what they expect about sex.

I think many a newly married have had poor if no, "training" on how to be married. I learned from my sister that if she like creamy peanut butter and I like crunchy, well by gally get both. If I like butter and she like margarine well get both. and the list can go on and on. My sister has mayo and miracle whip in her fridge.....no reason to only get what one person wants and risk causing resentment.

I hope lots of people read your post and take it to heart. Although we joke about who does the dishes, who brings home the bacon, and how the towels are folded, in the end we must compromise for a solution to getting things done and being happy in our relationship. When we love and care about our spouse, we learn to drop what we are doing and help with what they are doing, especially when they are over-burdened. In return, the help should be noticed and thanked. So whatever our divided responsibilities are in our marriage we must realize that the rules that govern those responsibilities are love and kindness. When we stop caring for our spouse, and our spouse stops caring for us, and the only thing left is the perceived burden of our responsibilities of marriage, the future of that marriage is in jeopardy. Our actions, I repeat OUR ACTIONS, speak volumes of the nature of our relationship with our spouse. Our inactions will render the relationship dead. This is true with something as simple as doing dishes, and certainly also true with other sacred marital responsibilities. How we demonstrate our love to our spouse is just as important as the act itself. When we love someone, we take care of them, and yes, they take care of us.

How do we act as men when we come home and the kids are crying, the house is in chaos, and our spouse is juggling a million things?

How would we like our wives to act when we come home from a week long business trip, had little sleep, dodged corporate bullets, and were bumped off two of the last three flights?

Further and more importantly, how have we been as an example to our children in what a Heavenly Relationship should be?

It takes a married couple, who deeply care about each other to fulfill a successful relationship, and a successful family. And while I don’t speak from personal experience about a successful family, I have seen them in the wards that I attend, the families that I home teach, and the member families that had invited me into their LDS family when I was growing up.

Dallin H. Oaks

Source: http://lds.org/general-conference/2007/04/divorce?lang=eng&query=marriage+divorce

“I speak briefly to those contemplating marriage. The best way to avoid divorce from an unfaithful, abusive, or unsupportive spouse is to avoid marriage to such a person. If you wish to marry well, inquire well. Associations through “hanging out” or exchanging information on the Internet are not a sufficient basis for marriage. There should be dating, followed by careful and thoughtful and thorough courtship. There should be ample opportunities to experience the prospective spouse’s behavior in a variety of circumstances. Fiancés should learn everything they can about the families with whom they will soon be joined in marriage. In all of this, we should realize that a good marriage does not require a perfect man or a perfect woman. It only requires a man and a woman committed to strive together toward perfection.”

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