What makes a good marriage and what is romance?

Looking at Facebook today, I saw a post that said simply ‘What makes a good marriage?’ and encouraged people to comment. As we get older and have more experience with relationships and with marriage, we can change our thinking on these things. Having been married a total of three times, I think I have learned not only about what makes a good marriage, but also what makes a bad one. I have learned that no relationship is perfect and if we strive to make it perfect that is when things can go wrong.

The things I think make a good marriage for me are:

  • The freedom to be yourself.
  • Having someone who loves you and tells you you’re beautiful – even without makeup and in times when you feel anything but.
  • Being able to talk to each other about anything and not to be scared to talk about difficult things.
  • Honesty, integrity and trust.
  • Realising that being part of a twosome means being there through the good times and the bad.
  • Being part of a team that works together when things get tough.
  • Someone who never makes you feel like a burden, especially when you have a ‘condition’ that might make you feel like it sometimes!
  • Being there to help each other but knowing when to let each other try before stepping in and taking over.
  • Acknowledging it’s OK to make mistakes.
  • Being able to say, ‘I’m sorry!’ and mean it!

What is/isn’t romance?

  • Romance is not all about sex and candlelight dinners.
  • Romance is about checking my tyre pressures, so I don’t get a flat tyre.
  • It’s about checking when my warrant runs out, so I don’t get a ticket.
  • It’s about checking in with each other when you go away to say you have arrived safely.
  • It’s about buying his favourite beer at the supermarket.
  • Or a pork pie from the market.
  • It’s buying little gifts ‘just because I love you!’
  • It’s about being OK when he reminds you to take your medication. Because I do forget sometimes.
  • It’s about telling him it’s OK to remind you to take your medication!

Signs of a ‘bad’ relationship:

  • Limiting your contact with friends.
  • Putting you down.
  • Checking on you constantly when you are apart.
  • Not being honest.
  • Someone who makes you feel bad for things you can’t help.

What makes a good relationship? To me, it’s a lot about acceptance. Accepting who we are. Accepting the reality of the situation and still wanting to be a part of that relationship. Accepting that both sides of a relationship need to feel that they are appreciated and respected, no matter what life throws at them.

Also, accepting Parkinson’s as part of my life. Of our lives. It is something that is not going to go away, so space needs to be made to accept it, but also to make our experience of it as positive as possible. When I speak of acceptance, I don’t mean that we should sit back and wait for the inevitable deterioration. Rather, I mean that we accept that it is part of our lives, but like any part of our lives we have control over how we handle it.

If we fight against it, or try to ignore it’s existence then we will always be in ‘battle mode’ in a heightened sense of awareness of it’s impact on our lives. It will become everything that our lives are about. There is a difference between fighting against it to the point where we refuse to acknowledge it’s presence and fighting to be as good as we can be.

There are three of us in this relationship, My husband, Parkies and me. Just as long as Parkies knows they are not in control, for as long as we can be we will remain in the driver’s seat!

Published by kiwipommysue

I work in health and have been with the same supportive team for over 7 years. They are all aware of my diagnosis and this helps tremendously especially while I get used to the idea of my diagnosis. My parents both had Parkinsons, so I guess my odds were higher than most.

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