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For the Married Guys (And the Guys Who Have Been Married)


By BayArea   Follow   Fri, 28 Dec 2012, 2:55am PST   36,527 views   675 comments   Watch (4)   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike  

Hi guys,

As the old adage states, "Can't live with them, can't live without them."

For the guys that are married now or have been married, I'm wondering what your experience has been and if you could give a newly engaged man (hypothetical to me since I am not engaged) any piece of advise or wisdom, what would it be?

I love my GF, but for a few minutes I'm going to zoom out and look at things from a more technical, statistical, and less emotional point of view.

To be honest, I am a bit discouraged at just how many people I know who don't seem to be too happy in their marriages. It always seems to be the same story. Things started off great. There was excitement, adventure, strong physical and emotional chemistry. Then 2-3yrs into it, those feels started to fade. Some couples moved on to the next phase of their lives and had some glue, er I mean kids which kept things fresh and exciting.

I saw a plot in the newspaper several years back that showed divorce statistics as a function of time. There is a spike early on in the marriage (first couple of years), then one at 7 years (7-year itch), and one at about year 18-20 (when the glue is all grown up). If you make it past that, you are fairly safe (not necessarily happy, but likelihood of divorce is low). Some of that is influenced by the fact that you don't have the same options at 45 or 50 as you do at 25 or 30. Sucks, but that's the truth.

I recall reading a book by psycologist Scott Peck that studied the term "Love." He argues that 100% of relationships fall out of love, usually pretty early on in the first few years. The feeling of love is not true love then. The conscious decision to love someone once you lose the "in love" feeling is what real love is all about.

Regarding statistics, 50% of couples who get married in this country wind up in divorce (To be fair, some of those aren't 1st marriages so that 50% number isn't quite as bad as it seems - The reason is that 2nd marriages have a higher divorce rate than 1st marriages and 3rd marriages have a higher divorce rate than 2nd marriages). Moving on, if 50% of couples get divorced, then 50% of couples don't get divorced. Surely those 50% that remain together aren't all happy marriages? So then let's say that half of the marriages that stay together are happy. That means that 25% of couples getting married in the first place remain happy, lol. I really don't like the odds here!

But anytime you get into this debate, you have to get into the alternative, being alone into older age. As much as I see my folks fight and bicker, I tend to think it's better than the alternative (at least for the level they fight and bicker).

A while back Patrick argued that the average person remains in their purchased home for no more than 6-7 years. He said, you might think you are different, but statistically you are not. Same thing goes for divorce. Nobody goes into marriage thinking they will get a divorce. But statistically, 1 in 2 people do in the USA.

What do you guys think?

As a side note, I am really curious about the following. What is the divorce rate assuming the following:

Both Members are devout Catholic ?
Both Members are devout Christian ?
Both Members are devout Muslim ?
Both Members are Atheist ?
Members don't share religious beliefs ?

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epitaph   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 7:42am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (6)   Dislike     Comment 636

elliemae says

A practical woman (there are a few of us around) would prefer you spend less on the ring & wedding - and more on something important like the future.

A nice honeymoon trip is cool too, but not opulent.

The problem is that society and advertising has created this unrealistic idea of what a wedding is that most women can't seem to shake.

elliemae   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 8:08am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (3)   Dislike (1)     Comment 637

I stand corrected! I want diamonds! The chocolate ones that they're pushing on tv, and there was a blue one and and yellow one and.... Fuck it - everyone pitch in & buy me a diamond!!! please!

epitaph   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 8:19am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike (1)     Comment 638

I know you are trying to hint that I'm deluded, and congrats on realizing what is not important in life, but empirically, I have seen that most women like jewellery and nice weddings.

mell   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 8:24am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 639

elliemae says

A practical woman (there are a few of us around) would prefer you spend less on the ring & wedding - and more on something important like the future.

A nice honeymoon trip is cool too, but not opulent.

I prefer if the woman spends her money on our future! An old vintage Saab convertible would be cool and not too opulent ;)

Vicente   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 9:13am PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 640

SoftShell says

that takes care of #1.

what about #2??

Plenty enough #2 (and #3) for us.

Thanks for asking!

Vicente   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 9:18am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (5)   Dislike (1)     Comment 641

epitaph says

I'm very happy to be tying the knot but this process is ridiculous.

We had a cheapskate wedding, bbq beforehand in place of formal rehearsal dinner. Titanium rings and few thousand for a location and catering, done. The night before, she and bridesmaids were obsessing over flower arrangements. The day of she was annoyed with the caterer. This was in 2005. I said "that shit doesn't matter".

I asked her yesterday what she remembers from the wedding. The people and socializing and dancing are what sticks. What she ate or what the flowers looked like? Not important.

We are both STEM people though, a group that is more about substance and less about appearance and keeping up with the Joneses.

Call it KKKrazy   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 9:59am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (4)   Dislike (1)     Comment 642

The expensive ring and the opulent wedding and honeymoon are the modern-day replacement of the dowry, and I don't see why women don't see them as symbols of their objectification and purchase. Perhaps the wedding and ring are the culmination of the vaunted female "mate selection process" represented in by a commercial edification. One would think the underlying love and commitment would be the important thing.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:08am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 643

Vicente says

We are both STEM people though, a group that is more about substance and less about appearance and keeping up with the Joneses.

sbh says

The expensive ring and the opulent wedding and honeymoon are the modern-day replacement of the dowry, and I don't see why women don't see them as symbols of their objectification and purchase. Perhaps the wedding and ring are the culmination of the vaunted female "mate selection process" represented in by a commercial edification. One would think the underlying love and commitment would be the important thing.

All girls want fancy fairy tale weddings, that's how they are genetically programmed.
I tell my daughter to just elope, and i'll give her $100,000 for a down payment on a house.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:10am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 644

elliemae says

I stand corrected! I want diamonds! The chocolate ones that they're pushing on tv, and there was a blue one and and yellow one and.... Fuck it - everyone pitch in & buy me a diamond!!! please!

Don't you have to marry all of us first?

Call it KKKrazy   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:11am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 645

Strategist says

I tell my daughter to just elope, and i'll give her $100,000 for a down payment on a house.

If she takes the 100k you know you've done your job well.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:11am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 646

elliemae says

A practical woman (there are a few of us around) would prefer you spend less on the ring & wedding - and more on something important like the future.

A nice honeymoon trip is cool too, but not opulent.

A nice practical woman? What is that?

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:12am PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike     Comment 647

sbh says

Strategist says

I tell my daughter to just elope, and i'll give her $100,000 for a down payment on a house.

If she takes the 100k you know you've done your job well.

She is still young, but so far has refused.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:14am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 648

CaptainShuddup says

epitaph says

What is a reasonable amount of money to spend on a ring/wedding?

We got married at the JP. Big wedding are the biggest waste of money in our Society. Save that money and so something useful with it.

I've known newly weds that just had a $30,000 wedding, then less than three months later they are struggling to pay rent and their other bills.

Those kids would have been better off with 30K in seed money.

Everyone is agreeing on a topic here. What's wrong with everyone?

Call it KKKrazy   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:21am PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 649

Strategist says

All girls want fancy fairy tale weddings, that's how they are genetically programmed.

I think it triggers an endorphin release that is irresistible to females, kind of like the mate selection feedback on steroids. The anticipation makes them quite literally insane. Imagine what set of psychic responses an eighteen year old guy would have in response to the notion of having his one and only sexual encounter. It would be hard to get him to trade that for 100k.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 10:27am PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 650

sbh says

Strategist says

All girls want fancy fairy tale weddings, that's how they are genetically programmed.

I think it triggers an endorphin release that is irresistible to females, kind of like the mate selection feedback on steroids. The anticipation makes them quite literally insane. Imagine what set of psychic responses an eighteen year old guy would have in response to the notion of having his one and only sexual encounter. It would be hard to get him to trade that for 100k.

I almost came at just the thought of it. And when the time came, it was over in a second.

rufita11   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 11:12am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (3)   Dislike     Comment 651

epitaph says

What is a reasonable amount of money to spend on a ring/wedding?

Research DeBeers and the absolutely ludicrous cost of diamonds, then research conflict diamonds--If you have a soul and a brain, you will not buy a diamond ever again. 12 years ago, my husband and I got silver bands off the internet, then got them engraved--total was around $100.
$Got a designer dress from the manufacturer for $100, had my mom augment it (sold it after the wedding for $80). I paid for dresses for my bridesmaids and flower girls. My Afghan friends brought amazing spread; others brought food too. My husband and I and friends were the band. The DJ was the videographer and a groomsman. Hall rental was super cheap ($120) because it was in the tiny town of Clyde. Everyone pitched in with flower decoration, etc. It's super great to have friends who are artists and entertainers--they are used to putting together great parties on the cheap.

Oh and my dad was the officiant ($0).

I got away with a wedding for under 2K.

We could have blown a bunch of our and our parents' money, but for what? My in-laws spent $15K on my SIL's wedding, which was two days before ours. Her marriage lasted less than 3 months.

rufita11   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 11:15am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 652

Strategist says

All girls want fancy fairy tale weddings, that's how they are genetically programmed.

"ALL" really? Weird, but I used to play "divorced mom who lives in an apartment" when I was a kid. I have no idea where I got the idea. But, it was so far removed from my conservative upbringing. In any case, my little girl friends and I never talked about fairy tale weddings. We were too busy playing football, baseball, kick the can, and army with all the neighborhood boys.

And by the time a girl becomes a woman, she should have given up her childhood fantasies.

swebb   befriend   ignore   Sat, 26 Apr 2014, 6:10pm PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 653

BayArea says

any piece of advise or wisdom, what would it be?

I like this one: "Expect 40%, give 60%" - if both in the relationship are living by that mantra, it's a good start.

Pay attention to how similar your views are on:

Intention to have children
Financial matters
Religion

APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 12:02am PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike     Comment 654

rufita11 says

Hall rental was super cheap ($120) because it was in the tiny town of Clyde.

VFW or American Legion?

hrhjuliet   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 11:13am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 655

New Renter says

hrhjuliet says

take the boys to dance class

Did your boys have any trouble in school for taking dance or did you enroll them concurrently into some lethal form of martial arts?

My boys don't have any trouble, since we have strong masculine role models at our dance school. Our boys are also taught in our house to ignore ridiculous gender stereotypes, especially ones that only really apply mainly in the the States alone. Also, my older son is part of the Ukrainian dance, which is rooted in military training; so anything but feminine for the boys. We have more boys than girls in that. The teen girls do show up though...they like that class because the teacher from the Ukraine is pretty handsome, but also engaged to the gorgeous ballet instructor at our school, so they can dream on.

My boys are pretty confident too. A sixth grader at our school who loved ballet, and was gifted at it, got teased by another boy about it. The other boy took his lunch, and things like that, threatening to tell the other kids if he told about the bullying. It was horrible, the kid quit a week before playing the soldier captain in the Nutcracker. He only recently told anyone why he quit. The bully was suspended, and the ballet boy found the other kids thought ballet was not just okay, but cool. The girl he liked in his class REALLY thought it was cool, and they are "going around" as they say now.

Football players do it, baseball players do it, I even danced with a professional baseball player who trained in ballet at the same facility as the ballet company I danced in, he plays for the Giants now.

Why wouldn't a boy want to train in a room full of girls in leotards? Rather be smacking other men's butts in tights on the football field? Hmmmm?

It's sad, dance should be for everyone: young, old, girls and boys. Why are so many good things only for girls? I think there is a war on men, not women.

hrhjuliet   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 11:24am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (3)   Dislike     Comment 656

epitaph says

Well, the reason I ask is because I recently decided to buy the cow as they say and purchase an expensive ring knowing it was money that could be better used. The good news is that the wedding will be about 3.5k total which is pretty frugal considering all of the over priced options the bay area has to offer. The ring was 5k which naturally I thought was too fucking much, but considering her sister got a 2+ karat diamond she probably thought she was taking a pretty big discount. And the one thing I've learned through this whole wedding process is that there are crooks at every corner ready to offer some stupid overpriced service that you don't need but hey EVERYONE DOES IT SO YOU SHOULD TOO. That capitalized part petty much sums up what I think about weddings in the western world. I'm very happy to be tying the knot but this process is ridiculous.

The average engagement ring costs 5.2k.

Average wedding is America 25.2k.

Our ENTIRE wedding, including our clothes, invitations etc. cost about 1,500. My ring cost 200, but that's not fair since I technically wear a child's size (4 and under) and that made it cheaper. It's also just a band with engraving on the inside, but I love it. It matches my husband's for one thing, and I didn't have to take it off to partner in ballet. You usually can't wear a ring when partnering because you could scratch someone, but mine was just a band, so it was safe.

It was a gorgeous wedding and a magical day. It doesn't need to cost a fortune.

hrhjuliet   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 11:36am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 657

Strategist says

All girls want fancy fairy tale weddings, that's how they are genetically programmed.

I tell my daughter to just elope, and i'll give her $100,000 for a down payment on a house.

I didn't want a fairytale wedding, I just wanted to honor tradition; we have so few rites of passage anymore. We also wanted to have a big enough excuse to get everyone together we loved, which was the main motivation. It worked. Family from France and the Ukraine came, and all my teachers and friends from England, not to mention here in the States we had Washington, Oregon, Maine, New York and Utah represented. That's why our honeymoon was sticking around for weeks doing things in the Bay Area with all our guests who came from so far.

Make it a wonderful memory.

Strategist   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 11:39am PDT   Share   Quote   Like (3)   Dislike     Comment 658

hrhjuliet says

Our ENTIRE wedding, including our clothes, invitations etc. cost about 1,500. My ring cost 200, but that's not fair since I technically wear a child's size (4 and under) and that made it cheaper. It's also just a band with engraving on the inside, but I love it. It matches my husband's for one thing, and I didn't have to take it off to partner in ballet. You usually can't wear a ring when partnering because you could scratch someone, but mine was just a band, so it was safe.

It was a gorgeous wedding and a magical day. It doesn't need to cost a fortune.

Can you have a word with my daughter? Normally she is very very frugal, but I can't understand why she wants a big wedding when the time comes.

Ironman   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 12:01pm PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 659

Strategist says

hrhjuliet says

It was a gorgeous wedding and a magical day. It doesn't need to cost a fortune.

Can you have a word with my daughter? Normally she is very very frugal, but I can't understand why she wants a big wedding when the time comes.

Ha Ha... Daughters....oh boy....

You know, you can always just get a ladder at Home Depot and prop it up at her window... hint... hint...

BayArea   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 12:50pm PDT   Share   Quote   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 660

I played football and basketball in HS and joined a fraternity in college and played all the intermural sports for the house.

Looking back, I do wish I had more balls to have done dance.

New Renter   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 2:01pm PDT   Share   Quote   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 661

hrhjuliet says

A sixth grader at our school who loved ballet, and was gifted at it, got teased by another boy about it. The other boy took his lunch, and things like that, threatening to tell the other kids if he told about the bullying. It was horrible, the kid quit a week before playing the soldier captain in the Nutcracker. He only recently told anyone why he quit.

That's pretty much what I'd expect.
hrhjuliet says

The bully was suspended

In my day the school administration turned a blind eye to such bullying by rationalizing kids need to work that out for themselves. That's giving them the benefit of doubt. It was my distinct impression administrators just didn't give a crap or maybe felt the little fa&&@!" needed a good asskicking to "beat the queer out of him." Punishment would only come into play if the bullied kid's parents got a lawyer. Such was the time before Columbine and Mathew Sheppard.

hrhjuliet says

and the ballet boy found the other kids thought ballet was not just okay, but cool. The girl he liked in his class REALLY thought it was cool, and they are "going around" as they say now.

Glad to hear it worked out for him.

hrhjuliet says

Why wouldn't a boy want to train in a room full of girls in leotards? Rather be smacking other men's butts in tights on the football field? Hmmmm?

Or sweatily wrestling around on the floor, desperately grasping at other trying to have their way with them.

Oh yes, methinks the jock doth protest too much.

OTOH being in a room full of girls in leotards sounds like a recipe for a sexual harassment suit.

hrhjuliet says

It's sad, dance should be for everyone: young, old, girls and boys. Why are so many good things only for girls?

Because a tomboy is far, far more acceptable to American society than being a "sissy".

areusure   befriend   ignore   Sun, 27 Apr 2014, 2:17pm PDT   Share   Quote   Like   Dislike