For girls like me who are seriously contemplating marriage and for others who are not or who are already married, this is certainly an interesting issue. How do you get the ideal husband? Is it when you fall deeply in love? Or is it by dating forever? Who knows. Or rather, Father Pat Connor knows.
In an article by Maureen Dowd on the New York Times website, one thing Father Pat Connor said was:
“Never marry a man who has no friends,” he starts. “This usually means that he will be incapable of the intimacy that marriage demands. I am always amazed at the number of men I have counseled who have no friends. Since, as the Hebrew Scriptures say, ‘Iron shapes iron and friend shapes friend,’ what are his friends like? What do your friends and family members think of him? Sometimes, your friends can’t render an impartial judgment because they are envious that you are beating them in the race to the altar. Envy beclouds judgment.
“Does he use money responsibly? Is he stingy? Most marriages that founder do so because of money – she’s thrifty, he’s on his 10th credit card.
“Steer clear of someone whose life you can run, who never makes demands counter to yours. It’s good to have a doormat in the home, but not if it’s your husband. . .”
Sound advice. Advice that our mothers and grandmothers gave us – well, they would have if they knew. He even talks about a man who is too attached to his mother (ring a bell?)
I have watched several people go into marriage with stars in their eyes and a couple of years later, watched the stars turn to disillusionment. I have this theory that regardless of how long you date or how well you ‘know’ each other, you seldom ever marry the person you think you are getting married to. People change. It is an infallible truth. The substance of the person might not change much but as the poet T. S. Eliot said, “we die to each other daily; what we know of other people is only our memory of the moments during which we knew them. And they have changed since then. Remember that at every meeting, we are meeting a stranger.”
It might not be as drastic as he puts it, but there certainly is some truth to what he says. The secret in my opinion, is to take it as an adventure. You never know what you will encounter around the bend. Sure, there may be some nasty experiences, but if the good times make up for the bad, then I don’t think you are doing too badly. Accepting the good and the bad without discriminating; Nobody is perfect, not even you; just imagine the surprises waiting for the other person…