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This room is for supportive and informative discussion about divorce and/or the annulment process. All posters must have been previously divorced or annulled.

Saint Eugene De Mazenod is patron of dysfunctional families & Saint Fabiola obtained a divorce from her first husband prior to devoting her life to charitable works.
Learn More: Saint Eugene De Mazenod and Saint Fabiola

Studies proved that living happily ever after is nothing but a myth. Also researches found that second marriage has less chance to last longer than the first one.

What is the secret to a lifelong marriage?

I was reading the book Saving Your Second Marriage Before It starts by Les Parrot and Leslie Parrot. Interesting book. I found something to share with you and I hope you will like it.

Looking forward for your input.

The book says:

If you and your partner are ready for marriage your relationship will be characterized by longevity, stability, and similarity.

Longevity has to do with how long you have known each other.... Research on mate selection makes it clear: Couples who rush into matrimony are at significant risk... The longer you date, the more ready you are for marriage.... There is no need to rush. Give yourselves time, and you will increase your chances of sharing a married love that will go distance.

Stability is defined as the quality of having constancy, reliability, dependability, and steadfastness. If these terms characterize your relationship, that's a good sign...

Stability in the dating years indicates that a couple is learning to practice negotiation and compromise. They are learning the fine art and skill of communication. In short, stable couples are proving to themselves in the dating years that they can navigate the turbulent and treacherous waters that are an inevitable part of sailing a second marriage vessel. These couples are resolving conflicts and keeping an even keel. They are charting a steady course that is bound to bring them happiness.

Similarity is not about feeling and doing everything in exactly the same way. That's uniformity. Similarity is more like unity than uniformity. Why is similarity important to your marriage? Because the happiest married couple have a lot in common. You may disagree, but it's a fact.

Similarities especially on the issues that matter most each person are the superglue that holds them together. The more similarities two people share, the more likely their relationship will survive and thrive. It's that simple. After a careful review of many, many marital studies, researches concluded that similarity is associated with marital success and is less associated with marital instability and divorce?

If a happy and committed couple has a lot in common, you may be wondering just what exactly these commonalities are. Role expectations for husband and wife certainly make the list. So do common values about spiritual matters, money, family, and even politics. Other similarities to consider are desire for children, energy level, dependability, sense of humor, cleanliness, goals, interests, habits, and skills, The list is practically endless.

Well, does this emphasis on unity mean you shouldn't marry someone who is very different from you? Not necessary. But having plenty of important similarities can outweigh and counteract your dissimilarities. Economic, racial, religious, political, intellectual, educational, and emotional similarities provide a common base of operation and make life significantly easier to negotiate together. Why? Because every difference requires time, energy, and work to find a middle ground, if there is one. The more differences between you, the more nooks and crannies you will discover in your relationship for resentment and frustration to take hold. And the more stressful your second marriage becomes.

So as you consider your relational readiness for remarriage, take time to examine your longevity, your stability, and your differences. The time you spend on this today may save you a lot of pain in the future. And you'll find more fulfillment in the present as you discover both your personal and relational readiness for lifelong in a second marriage...
02/27/2013 new
Also from the same book:

What follows is some tailored advice for the spouse who has been divorced and the spouse who has been widowed. We also offer some guidance for the person who has not been married before but is marrying someone in one of these two categories. Feel free to go right to he section that applies to you.

For the Person Who's Been Divorced

There is a myth about divorce that it is a temporary crisis whose most harmful impact is at the time of the breakup. Truth is, the pain of divorce lingers a lifetime. Its sting is reexperienced again and again. And not even falling in love and marrying for the second time erases that. This is not to say that a second marriage may not help ease the pain, but know this: Remarrying does not make the lingering pain of divorce disappear completely.

Maybe you did know that. But what you might not know is that because you are divorced you are most likely entering a second marriage with a bag full of guilt, whether true or false, real or imaginary. Every divorced person we know feels guilty for the failure of their first marriage-whether they filed or the other person filed for it. For both parties, guilt is simply endemic to divorce. And this guilt can't help- but to enter your second marriage.

For this reason we encourage you to explore this guilt with your new partner and with a trusted counselor if necessary. Why? Because guilt has a way of seeping down into the crevices of our relationships and doing damage we can't even see. Guilt, if allowed to run wild, dismantles love. It prevents us from being authentic and genuine.

Renee is a good example. She entered her second marriage oblivious to the guilt she carried with her. Three years later, she stood on the brink of a second divorce because she had suddenly changed. Her husband was mystified. You're not yourself anymore, he'd say. And he was right. Renee had spent the past three years of her marriage trying to accommodate him in any way she could. The guilt she brought into this second marriage was the fuel in her tank, and it drove her to do everything for him she hadn't done for her first husband. But she could only keep it up so long. By year three she had burned out.

Guilt can do that to a person. It can drive you into behaviors as a way of paying penitence when all that required is the real you. So if you are entering this second marriage as a divorced person, take a good look at your backpack of guilt. Make sure you know what it might be causing you to do. Maybe you are bringing into your second marriage financial debt that is shrouded in guilt. This debt could cause you to be workaholic. Maybe it's guilt over not being the kind of parent you want to be. Or guilt over a lack of physical passion on your part. Whatever it is, identify it and explore it. With a little exploration, you can reduce guilt's impact before it dismantles your relationship.
02/27/2013 new

For the Person Who's Been Widowed

Linda and Jeff, both in their fourties, were coming to us for premarital counseling. But on this particular day, Linda said she wanted to see us alone. She brought her diary into our counseling office and said, I want to read you what I wrote this morning.... I awoke to the phone ringing. I didn't answer. Instead I'm jolted back into the experience of answering that very same phone four years ago when my thirteen-year-old daughter, Cindy, called to say that Ted had collapsed while watching her soccer practice that morning at school. He'd been to the hospital. I raced to be by his side, but it was too late. Cindy met me in the parking lot, sobbing. I was numb. Some days, like today, I still am. How could Ted be gone? If he were here we'd be celebrating our wedding-fifth wedding anniversary tonight.

At that point, Linda closed her diary, wiped the tears brimming in her eyes, and asked, Should I really be getting married again? We sat still for a moment. She continued, I mean, I love Jeff, I really do, but would Ted want me to do this?

It's a familiar question to anyone who had worked with a widow or widower about to be married. Just like the person who's been divorced, the person whose spouse has died carries plenty of guilt into a second marriage. Is this fair to his memory? Would she approve of this person? And what about our sex life? Part of me just doesn't feel right. These are all comments and questions we've heard many times. And chances are you are asking them too. We aren't going to answer them for you. Only you can do that. But we can tell you we have known many people that got a second start at marriage after their first spouse died. They created a beautiful second marriage that made the rest of their life fulfilling.

So if you are in this category and you are wrestling with guilt and grief and other troubling emotions because you lost your first spouse to circumstances beyond your control, we encourage you to process them with and objective counselor.

Typically, a couple sessions is enough to articulate your feelings and get some clarity for your future. And with clarity you will be able to shed some unnecessary baggage, preserve the memory and honor of the spouse you lost, and begin to create a new future.


02/27/2013 new
For the Person Who's Marrying Someone Who Has Been Married Before

If you fall into this category, we want to commend you for taking time to read this book with your partner. It says a great deal about your character and your desire for a solid marriage. And since you are entering marriage for the first time with someone who, in a sense, already knows the ropes, you will have some special challenges yourself.

The biggest challenge will be you will soon discover you've married two people: your new spouse and their former partner may be deceased or live a thousand miles away, but they will be there. They will be there, for example, on former anniversaries. They will be there when your partner recalls something they used to do or say. Trust us, a former spouse, no matter how distant, still roams the halls of your new home. So go into this marriage with your eyes open. Talk about it. Get this fact out in the open, and as you explore it learn what makes you uncomfortable and what doesn't.

You may encounter the ghost of your partner's former spouse in a variety of places.... This can be difficult issue that festers for years if not exposed. Don't keep your concerns about this topic bottled up inside. Take our suggestion and, if this is a concern for you, talk about it when the two of you are relaxed and comfortable. Communication... is lifeblood of every healthy marriage. So practice it with this sensitive topic. Go slowly and listen to each other. The more you talk it through, the more at ease you will be with each other as you develop your own love life together. And see a competent counselor together if issues concerning a former spouse continue to hunt.

Whatever your statusdivorced, widowed, or neither---with all what has been said, What do you believe your chances of marital success are? Take a moment to answer this question for yourself.
02/27/2013 new

Hey, widows and widowers, chime in!

(Quote) Therese-668052 said:For the Person Who's Been Widowed . Just like the person who's been divorced, ...
(Quote) Therese-668052 said:For the Person Who's Been Widowed . Just like the person who's been divorced, the person whose spouse has died carries plenty of guilt into a second marriage.
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I disagree, and I think I can speak for many.

I don't feel guilty about a darned thing. I had a successful 18-year marriage and I helped him through four years of sickness. He's long gone to his heavenly reward (which he definitely earned). Life here on earth goes on, and at this point, what he did or was or thought is pretty much irrelevant.

Can I get an "Amen"?

02/27/2013 new

... you will soon discover you've married two people: your new spouse and their former partner... ....Trust us, a former spouse, no matter how distant, still roams the halls of your new home.

Not true. No matter whom you marry, you marry the person and ALL the experiences he/she has had: marriage, loss, parenthood, career success, combat, poverty, illness, whatever.

If these things are "ghosts", then the person has NO BUSINESS re-marrying: it's a cheat to the new spouse. You must enter marriage with all your personal garbage tied up in a neat package so the new person doesn't have to deal with it.


What do you believe your chances of marital success are?
Darned good. Been there, done that, learned a lot in the process, and jettisoned most of the baggage. smile

02/27/2013 new

I've been reading a great book on this subject:


Marriage Advice from a Successful Catholic Husband, by I. Cantwin.


wink

02/27/2013 new

Joking aside, there is a GREAT book on this topic. It's secular but very strong and practical. (I know the author.)

Will our Love Last? by Sam Hamburg


It's been in print for decades and has been translated into dozens of languages.



03/06/2013 new
(Quote) Marge-938695 said: ... you will soon discover you've married two people: your new spouse and their former partner...
(Quote) Marge-938695 said:

... you will soon discover you've married two people: your new spouse and their former partner... ....Trust us, a former spouse, no matter how distant, still roams the halls of your new home.

Not true. No matter whom you marry, you marry the person and ALL the experiences he/she has had: marriage, loss, parenthood, career success, combat, poverty, illness, whatever.

If these things are "ghosts", then the person has NO BUSINESS re-marrying: it's a cheat to the new spouse. You must enter marriage with all your personal garbage tied up in a neat package so the new person doesn't have to deal with it.


What do you believe your chances of marital success are?
Darned good. Been there, done that, learned a lot in the process, and jettisoned most of the baggage.

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Thank you Marge for taking the time to read and sharing your opinion. It is enriching to read different ways than the authors offer.

With God Blessings theheart
03/06/2013 new
(Quote) David-364112 said: I've been reading a great book on this subject: Marriage Ad...
(Quote) David-364112 said:

I've been reading a great book on this subject:






Marriage Advice from a Successful Catholic Husband, by I. Cantwin.




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I checked both books descriptions and reviews they are interesting to read. Thank you David for suggesting them. smile
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