Thursday, March 05, 2009

Recipe for a Happy Marriage?

There was an article in the paper yesterday that discussed the formula for a happy marriage as per a survey conducted on 3000 Brits.  To sum things up, on average, the people who had the happiest marriages:  say, "I love you", daily; share 2 hobbies; have sex three times a week; communicate three times during the work day; enjoy two romantic meals a month; and exchange four kisses and three cuddles daily.  What I can deduce from this is that the happy couples that helped to formulate this recipe have neither small children, nor PVRs.  As someone who has both, I think we need to tweek this a wee bit.  

Saying, "I love you", everyday isn't too much of a hardship but all those kisses and cuddles are going to be difficult to squeeze in.  The mornings might not be a good time for this as we are in constant battle with our 3 year old, starting from being jolted out of slumber by her squealing, and ending with her complete refusal to get into the car to go to school.  Any romantic gestures during this time will be taken as sarcasm.  Evenings aren't great for this either because the whole business of getting two kids fed, bathed, and off to bed is exhausting to say the least, and by the time we've got them in their beds and get dinner cleared away, we need to take to our separate corners to unwind.  There may be time for a genuine "I love you" in the hour between getting relaxed and heading off to bed, provided it doesn't interfere with our favourite shows.  I am, however, willing to multitask and cuddle while I'm watching TV.  Based on this, I'm willing to offer up four "I love yous"per week, and maybe one long cuddle per night, with the possibility of a kiss during a commercial break.  No promises though.  

Speaking of our shows, this is where the PVR becomes an issue.  How can one be expected to have sex three times a week EVERY week when we have the ability to record hours and hours of quality programming every week, and need to use our spare time to keep from falling behind on it.  Lost, Grey's Anatomy, House, Hell's Kitchen, etc.  That's a heck of a lot of commitment!  We may have romantic plans for after the TV turns off, but c'mon people, let's talk about sleep here!  Small children, remember?  Would my marriage really be happier if I were that much more tired?  I'm going to leave it to you to decide how often is enough 'cause my parents are reading and they don't need more information than they've already got.  I knew I should never have given them my web address.  

How about those two hobbies that we're supposed to share?  Is it enough that we both like to mountain bike and ski, but only get to fantasize about getting out to do those things together.  I suppose fantasizing could count as a hobby, right?  I'll go with one hobby that can be done anytime, anywhere.

Communicating at least 3 times during the work day? Does calling to ask him to bring home diapers count?  How about if I follow it up with a text message that instructs him on which specific diapers to buy?  That'll put me at two!  Truthfully, our days are both rather busy, and interrupting each other is kind of annoying.  I'm gonna offer up one per day, provided there is actual information that needs to be transmitted.

Two romantic meals per month seems acceptable, although the interpretation of "romantic" must be a subjective thing.  Are the kids bound and gagged such that hubby and I may converse?  Yes?  Consider this to be romantic.

Theoretically, we're not putting forth enough effort to actually be happy, which is too bad, because I mistakenly believed that we were happy.  That's so much extra work that I don't even want a happy marriage now!  I'm gonna settle for mediocre.  Who's with me?

9 comments:

No Mother Earth said...

Awesome. I'm in. Love this post.

Chantal said...

:) I agree, those Brits didn't have kids. Or their kids are grown AND have moved out.

kgirl said...

Love this. Truly. And mediocre is just fine for us, too.

crazymumma said...

well, my marriage is on the rocks so I cannot comment.

Nora said...

This is your best post ever. And maybe those Brits are lying.

b*babbler said...

I'm in agreement with you on all of this...

Seriously, what did people do before the PVR?

MLL said...

I thought we were happy too, but I guess mediocre must be it if these are the "criteria". LOL about all the shows on the DVR...same for us!

petite gourmand said...

I know seriously- what's up with those brits?
They can't possibly have kids (or PVR)
and really, what do they have to watch that is worth missing out on snogging time for other than maybe- Little Britain? (which is hilarious btw)

kittenpie said...

I had exactly the same reaction, and we don't even have a pvr! But instead, I just didn't mention the study to my husband so maybe he won't notice he's only in a mediocre marriage. That should work, right?