Thursday, August 6, 2009


This picture is of my wife and I on our wedding day, 20 years ago today. Well, not really... I don't think we even used them on our cake...

I stand amazed that I've been married to this woman for 20 years. We are in Seattle visiting g'kids for a week so it's truly perfect. We toyed with the idea of doing something special for this day but realized that 20 didn't seem to be a real milestone so we're just taking the day in passing and being in a part of the world we really love with people we really love. Sometime, we will really have a bigger celebration. Between us, we've been married to somebody for over 28 years (how would you count it?) so we really think it's about time to celebrate some year..

Her name is the same as my last wife so I just refer to her as the incumbent. In the spirit of this blog, we'll just call her "J".

J does not read this blog so I think it would be a great time for me to give my best shot at marriage advice - how you can become and stay married for 20 years. If you see this article disappear, you'll know that she found me on the web ;-)
  1. Meet as "boy meets girl on AA campus" - it helps if you're less sober than her and you hook up with only 9 months so you can remind her and her sponsees that she 13th stepped you...
  2. Date/hang out for ~3 years and then decide to buy a house together
  3. Learn that the whole purpose of children in these years is to attempt to drive you appart
  4. Live together for a few years
  5. Turn to Al-Anon to save your life (and perhaps J's as well)
  6. Then, decide to get married when " can't think of any real reason not to..."
  7. When J can't stop crying for 9 months after your marriage, decide to not take it personally
  8. Get a really good sponsor
  9. Talk to that sponsor a lot
  10. Learn to really depend on a sponsor and a higher power with sufficient power to save both your life and your life with/or without a relationship
  11. Learn that, not only are you always wrong, she is always right
  12. Practice the principle of #11 in all your affairs
  13. Notice that the same principles that work in AA can work in your marriage and your family
  14. Never "work on your marriage" (that was the only time we nearly lost it)
  15. Get closer to your sponsor
  16. Accept almost every AA service opportunity offered
  17. If no one offers an AA service opportunity, create one
  18. Create your own home group
  19. Realize that god can be in your life, relationship or no relationship, money or no money, etc.
  20. Build an extended family modeled on your family of choice in AA
  21. Be more than a little crazy - your kids expect it and your g'kids need it
That seems like enough for now...

What a wonderful life this has been...


dAAve said...

Happy 20th!!

Steve E. said...

GREAT read--I'm sending this to a couple who are trotting right down the same path--exactly! Bought the house, not married, maybe some day, etc, etc.

Maybe in 20 years, they will also remember your "Tips for Staying Sobe, er, wedded!

Carol said...

Loved the list. Ah, that 13th stepping, works out often enough to keep the rest of us hoping!

Syd said...

This is a great post. I really like what you wrote. I am always asking those who have been married for many years, how they managed to stay together. Once I asked a couple that had been married for 60 years what their secret was. The answer: It's no secret, it's just a lot of pain. The wife said this while smiling at her husband who looked back at her and winked. You gotta love that.

Cat said...

Happy 20th! That is great!