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How many happily married couples do you know?

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ErinHa posted 4/6/2019 14:32 PM

I was just thinking about this...even in good marriages that are successful I can't really put my finger on many couples that I think are truly happy and fulfilled. It feels like constant compromise at best, leaving no one really fulfilled.

People get married for different reasons (security, family, sex, etc.) and we change throughout our lives...feels so difficult to keep it all going. So much pressure...and the stakes are so high when mistakes are made (like infidelity, financial abuse, verbal abuse, etc.).

I can think of maybe 5 really good marriages that I know of. Everyone else seems to be in a marriage that seems mediocre at best...but I'm looking in from the outside admittedly and certainly don't really know what goes on behind closed doors.

Just curious to see if others have had the same thoughts as me!

NorthernMSB posted 4/6/2019 14:44 PM

I don't know any truly happy (HAPPY!) marriages. Some people are content, some are happy with the concessions they have made for lifestyle or security. Some are longterm, decades old school relationships but not passionately happy.

Again, you never know what goes on behind closed doors. most people would have said my marriage was happy and at least some of the time it was.

Phoenix1 posted 4/6/2019 14:51 PM

Because I know that Xhole and I presented a facade of a wonderfully strong marriage to friends and family, and it was truly anything but (after first Dday), I just don't go there with my thoughts about anyone else's marriage. I know first hand how much of a lie it can be. I guess I don't see the point.

That being said, I have many friends and coworkers that have been married for a very, very long time and "appear" to be very happy. But true or not? Who knows. Their marriages could implode tmrw and it wouldn't surprise me. *shrug*

phmh posted 4/6/2019 16:43 PM

According to the book The Science of Happily Ever After, about 30% of long-term relationships (including marriage) can be considered relatively happy. That seems about right (albeit possibly a bit high) based on the people I know.

People tend to open up to me and I am shocked by how many people I know that pretty much never have sex with their spouse and are fundamentally unhappy with their marriages.

Of course, as everyone has said, you never really know what happens in a marriage (hell, I didn't even know what was going on in mine!)

I do think it's possible to have a very happy long-term relationship (whether that's officially marriage or just commitment). Perhaps I am just naive, but it makes me feel better to believe it's possible!

WhoTheBleep posted 4/6/2019 20:36 PM

Zero marriages. I trust nothing anymore. Everything is a possible farce. Everything.

Zamboni posted 4/6/2019 22:17 PM

The more I continue on this journey through infidelity / separation / divorce, the less I am starting to believe that long term marriages are sustainable.

Iím not one of those people that believe that partners werenít meant to be monogamous. I just think that people change over the years ... their expectations change ... their goals. Maybe one partner is all in and fully committed until ďdeath do us partĒ but it doesnít guarantee the other partner is.

I think there is a a tremendous amount of infidelity that goes on in marriages but the other spouse doesnít know. I canít tell you how many people (like the moms I know at school) that boast about how their husband ďwould never do that.Ē

My parents were married for almost 50 years. My dad passed away from cancer. Prior to him getting sick, I saw my parents were more like companions. Then when my dad was ill, I saw my mother caring for him almost like he was another child.

Long term marriages work when the two people in it recognize that relationships have ups and downs, thst there are problems, challenges, and stress that make it really difficult at times.

Some people accept that .. and others donít have the emotional maturity to recognize that and go searching for a shiny new toy.

So to answer your question, I donít think I know anyone that is over the moon with their marriage. I think most are
just complacent.

I knew one couple that seemed genuinely happy ... both had great jobs, a beautiful home, they traveled all the time together. But they recently divorced because she was banging her chiropractor for over a year. So yeah ... Iím pretty skeptical these days.

ForTheKids posted 4/6/2019 22:30 PM

I do know that I hear lots of couples bickering and arguing about mundane stuff when Iím checking out at the store or just around town. Me being single, I just smile and enjoy the show presented to me.

DevastatedDee posted 4/6/2019 23:24 PM

This is why I love my dogs. I fully understand and appreciate the relationship and we're not gonna break up, lol.

Hurtbeyondtime posted 4/7/2019 02:08 AM

Probably Zero.. after the show we put on after DDAY everyone thought we were the best couple ever.. little did they know I was in hell 🔥 🔥🔥

deena04 posted 4/7/2019 06:20 AM

I know happy people that choose to be happy. I think happiness is a choice to some extent. However, that does not mean the actual marriage is happy, just at the person is choosing to be happy with what they have going on. Iím with the dog loving people. I am really happy right now with my person, but that does not mean that I would run down the altar. Iím a little jaded with the marriage thing still.

sewardak posted 4/7/2019 09:05 AM

Many. All of our friends.

Cooley2here posted 4/7/2019 09:22 AM

I know some. If fact my grandparents, who were in my life every day, were the most devoted couple I ever saw. I have relatives, friends, neighbors who are. I am happy in my marriage and assume my husband is. The most important trait I see is kindness. Being thoughtful of the other. Just being a decent, caring person makes any relationship better.

Oftencheatedon posted 4/7/2019 17:44 PM

A lot. Not my parents though.

But I have many, many friends (known for decades) that truly like and love each other.

And yes I also know others who are not in that category.

Interesting to me is that so many of the really happy couples married fairly young. Although I remarried very late in life (60) my current DH (non-cheater) and I are very, very happily married.

AbandonedGuy posted 4/8/2019 06:47 AM

In my experience, personally and with friends' marriages, a marriage is at its happiest when one spouse is oblivious to the bullshit slung by the other spouse. Marriage is hard work and compromise all day, all the time, and being content is the goal IMO. You never know who's truly content or happy or what have you, since people tend to keep those cards close, but based on the friends and family who open up to me, I'd say "a lot" of marriages are built on rocky ground. Based on my hyperawareness post divorce, I'd say "even more than I thought" are not too good.

HalfTime2017 posted 4/8/2019 17:07 PM

Obviously happiness is different for each person. I think that society as a whole has gotten Way Way too selfish. We watch these RomComs and read these Disney fairytales as if that's real. Life isn't like that at all.

So back to your question, how many, I think there is a good number of people that realize that marriage is work, and its not rainbows and unicorns everyday. Its your love for your spouse, and them for you, and that thru thick and thin you work your way around things that pop up. A dying parent, a sick child, loss of employment and so forth can throw a wrench into happiness at that moment, but YOU HAVE TO BE CONTENT AND HAPPY ABOUT YOUR LOT IN LIFE. In that, I see many of my brothers and sisters and friends that have a good marriage. Is it crazy happiness all the time, no, its just LIFE.

People that go into marriage, or think that marriages are going to make them happy and whole are the ones that we find are waywards. They are empty. Marriage and partners cant make them happy. You have to be happy and content with yourself. Know that issues arise and you fall in and out of love with your spouse at different times, and get upset with them at different times throughout the marriage, but its the working together and making the best of the situation is what marriage is suppose to be. The self entitled notion of "I need to be 100% happy, and won't settle for anything else is ruining the grit that is required to be happy.

I met my WW young, now when I date, I'm only going to date someone that is happy with themselves and is content with who they are. A healthy individual knows that happily ebbs and flows, and you make the best of it along the way. We all need to make peace with our lot in life, and do the best we can. Sometimes it sucks, but most of the time its just OKAY, and that is just fine. We lose sight of that OKAY, and thats the grass is greener on the otherside nonsense, and you'll never really truly be content or happy.

Rideitout posted 4/8/2019 19:01 PM

Not many. Mine was by far the "happiest" that I'd seen IRL, but, of course, that was a facade. But I was happy; I had my complaints, of course, but, in aggregate, being married made my life better than not being married. Most of my friends, I cannot say the same. Some of the "rue the day" they got married, others are still very much in love with their wives, but they are wildly unhappy with their sex lives. Most of them have or are looking for "something on the side" to fill that "need".

By far the most common thing I hear about "unhappiness" in a M is sex. It's so far and away the number 1, I struggle to think of what number 2 would be, perhaps disagreements about how to raise the children or money. But that's so distant a number 2 as to be almost not worthy of being on the same list.

Now, to be fair, I have no idea if I'm hearing the truth (I think so), or the whole story (I know I'm not). So who knows WHY sex is such an issue, it could be entirely the H's fault. But it's "the issue" for a lot of men that I know, that's for sure. And it's an issue that's imminently solved with an A, ergo, I know a lot of cheating or looking to cheat men. But who knows, for all I know their W is dying for more sex and the H is just bored and wants something new.

Anyway, back to the original question, I don't know many happy marriages. It's the "quiet ones" that you have to wonder about. I never (still don't) talk about my M to well, anyone. And I think that's because I was pretty happy, so I just shut up and let them vent. Still do, although, TBH, because of the A, my circle of friends shrunk a lot. It's too hard to hear about a friend contemplating an A or discussing their AP. That was my W, and thinking about her being the subject of those conversations makes me sick.

AbandonedGuy posted 4/8/2019 23:12 PM

Speaking of friends contemplating affairs... My closest friend, the one who might've just saved my life during week 1 post DDay, told me on my own move-out day how he was contemplating cheating on his wife with this coworker and somehow I've never been triggered by it, even a little bit. EXACTLY what I just went through, which he's painfully aware of after weeks of daily calls. Somehow I'm able to compartmentalize it with little effort. Part of me, I think, was interested to get this perspective since I got ZERO insight from my ex-wife who clammed up and ditched me with little fanfare. Here he is telling me his thought processes and it's like I'm getting some kind of closure via a surrogate. Another part of me has known him for over two decades and would lay down on train tracks for him, especially after all he's done for me over the years and recently. So while I'll listen to him, I'll still call him out on his bullshit. I would do that anyway, but I make a special point not to let him get lost in self-delusion. Listening to him talk about this for months, it's like I've got a special line into the WS mindset.

MaryG posted 4/9/2019 00:57 AM

I know a lot of couples who make a public show of Ďhappinessí but Iím not convinced. My best friend, on her second marriage, is constantly making compromises to please her H; he likes to watch TV into the wee small hours, she would love to go to bed at 11pm, yet she stays up with him every night, fighting sleep, getting up exhausted next morning, while he stays in bed till 10am!

MakingMyFuture posted 4/9/2019 01:26 AM

My parents have been happily married for over 45 years. Of course, theyíre Lesbians, so thereís that.

cdagal posted 4/9/2019 07:10 AM

I just returned from a visit to my parents. It was to celebrate my fatherís 90th birthday. My motherís 91st birthday was last week. They are coming up to their 68th anniversary. I had an opportunity to have really wonderful talks with them , together and separately. My dad is in early dementia. They still live in their condo. They are devoted to each other and always have been. But they both recognize that marriage has its ups and downs and they have experienced the full range over all those years, raising 5 children, seeing family members stumble and fall, celebrating accomplishments both big and small. Health issues are the latest challenge, dad losing so much of his independence and mom dealing with everything that comes with it. Happiness is not based on single moments in time but knowing that your partner will support you come what may. Both of them have been tested to the brink of their endurance over the years but they recognize that despite having bouts of despair and unhappiness, there is no one else with whom they would make that journey. All of the kids saw this as we grew up. It gave my siblings the strength to weather the ups and downs of their marriages. It gave me the strength to end mine.

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