Blue field like crop rows and burgundy border, saying "Don't Just Survive - Thrive

What No One Tells the Bride by Marg Stark

Thesis: You don’t have to pretend everything is fine, the fact that it’s not means it is fine.

Specific Things to Remember:

  • Believe you can be happy in marriage
  • Challenge conventional thinking
  • Make your OWN marriage
  • Give yourself a lot of space to figure stuff out
  • Don’t number your priorities – let it be. It’s okay to have different ones than what you think you should have.
  • Hold on to your identity through holding on to some stuff.
  • Married social life:
    • Don’t underestimate what your friends, and your single life, meant to you. Honor them instead.
    • Don’t buy into the idea that marriage makes you a traitor or dullard.
    • Set boundaries and prune your relationships, choosing only supportive ones.
  • Talk about your values, goals and fears – set rules that work for you.
  • Delay making changes that will dramatically alter your financial status.
  • Don’t force your spouse to do something he or she is not good at.
  • Use trust to surprise the soul – give when you’re expected to take
  • Act like an equal and demand help.
  • Employ the “who cares most” rule – then force yourself to care less.
  • Choose unconditional love every time.
  • Figure out what really prevents you from feeling loved and cherished.
  • Help him “get you loved” but identifying those things.
  • Love for the sake of loving.
  • On having children:
      • Add to your family only for the right reasons
      • Wait a little longer. Grow up a little more.
      • Build a foundation for as long as it takes.
      • Have fun and get funny. People stay happy with children if they intimately “get” each other and enjoy it.
    • Spend time alone
    • Pay attention to little things
    • Make intimacy “privacy you share”
    • On communication:
      • Embrace his eccentricities
      • Agree to disagree
      • Offer advice only when asked, and criticism only gently
    • Say it out loud, not just the bad but the good. By doing so, you celebrate the unique and quirky nature of your life and love.