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We’re celebrating 25 years of marriage

This week my hubby and I will reach a milestone in our marriage. We have been married for 25 years without divorcing, killing, maiming or otherwise causing bodily injury to each other! Now I call that a milestone — especially if you read today’s headlines. According to Marriage 101.org the current divorce rate for first time marriages is 41 percent.

Truthfully, I’m not really bragging. When John and I married we expected it to last we didn’t “plan” on a divorce. I’m serious. We knew people who married who almost seemed to “plan” on a divorce. They went into the wedding with the attitude of “Well, if it doesn’t work I’ll just leave.” That, my friend, is planning for a divorce. Now, before my computer gets clogged in e-mail; yes, there are legitimate reasons for divorce.

Although John and I have weathered through tough times in our marriage periodically, I have to say our first year was one of our toughest. I began to notice John’s behavior slowly begin to change.

At first, it was little things like he would get upset because I forgot to do something. Nothing bad – just upset. Like we all do. Then things began to get worse, one morning I accidentally scorched his egg just a little and he became furious! He grabbed the plate yelled something about cooking slammed the plate into the sink, broke the plate stormed out the door and left for work! I just stood there and thought, “What on earth happened to him?”

This pattern continued for several weeks getting progressively worse. One night after he punched the wall because he couldn’t find his favorite sleep shorts, I knew we had a problem. He eventually calmed down, apologized and we talked. I had already shared with some friends about his behavior and some had even witnessed it. Although, no one said anything, I think they were all thinking the same thing, “Will this marriage even make it through the first year?”

The next morning he had another episode over something. I went to work praying for an answer. I babysat and cleaned house for a family. When I got to work that morning I turned on the news and it just happened they were doing a report on how some medication can cause behavioral changes when used over long periods of time. John’s high blood pressure medication was listed. I immediately called the pharmacist. I told him what I suspected.

He said, “Well, that’s a possibility, but only if he’s been on it for over two years. How long has he been on it?” My reply, “five years.” The pharmacist replied, “I bet that’s your problem, call the doctor immediately.” The doctor changed his medication and my wonderful hubby was back!

My advice to newlyweds is to look for solutions, not ways out. When John and I did our pre-marriage counseling our pastor told us that love was not something you fall into or out of, it is something you choose to give or not to give. He also told us that marriage isn’t a 50-50 concept it’s actually 100-100. It’s both partners giving everything of themselves to make a marriage work. He was, and still is, right.

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