30 LESSONS FOR LOVING
Advice from the Wisest Americans on Love, Relationships, and Marriage
By: Karl Pillemer, PhD
Published: January 8, 2015
Publisher: Hudson Street Press
So many marriage advice books come from one couple writing the book based on their experiences, their mishaps, and their faith. But, it’s just their perspective. This one gathers advice from couples and individuals who have been happily married for years, those who have been married for years not so happily, those whom are divorced, those with regrets, and those who married and never wanted anything more. You see all sides of marriage from good to bad and everything in between. Pillemer has interviewed hundreds of people and compiled their advice into five basic lessons for those looking for love, those thinking about marriage, and those who are wanting to stay married. Advice from those married just a few years to those married 70-plus years make this a comprehensive advice book for everyone.
After Pillemer wrote 30 LESSONS FOR LIVING, readers were asking for more advice related to marriage. Not only how to live a life without regrets, but have a long, rewarding marriage without regrets. He wanted this book to be different from other marriage manuals, sharing real experiences, regrets, mistakes, and joy. Everyone he interviewed was sixty-five or older, but not everyone had been in a life-long marriage. Many were divorced, even multiple times, many were now widowed, but also many were still married and very happily at that.
Pillemer covered all areas of dating, love, marriage, parenting, crisis, and growing old together in his interviews. Each chapter focuses on one lesson and the advice pertaining to that lesson, for example in “Lessons for Finding a Mate”, interviewees were in agreement with following that gut feeling. If you feel like something isn’t right, seems off, or you have doubts, don’t get married! Some wished they had followed that gut feeling and others were thankful that they had.
Most marriages will suffer through some type of crisis together…a death of a parent, job loss, or illness. One chapter is devoted to marriage being hard and how to get through those hard parts. One woman reminded readers to see beyond the wedding. It’s just one day and will be blissfully happy, but you have to see beyond that to the dirty laundry, stack of dishes, crying babies, long hours, etc. Another interviewee encouraged married couples to make sure they are spending time with others who are positive. Hanging around couples with successful marriages does rub off on your marriage. Spend less time with those who are negative toward their spouse.
Overall, marriage can be an amazing experience if you find the perfect friend to share it with. Someone who is willing to work as hard as you are. If both of you wake up each morning, saying to yourself, “how can I make his/her day better?”, then you will find happiness and respect in your marriage. I appreciated all the great stories (happy and not so happy) and am sure the author had an enjoyable time visiting with all these great folks, hearing their stories, reminiscing with them, and feeling the love between the couples.
|Karl Pillemer, PhD – source|
Karl Pillemer, Ph.D., is one of America’s foremost gerontologists and family sociologists. He is a professor of human development at Cornell University. He founded the Marriage Advice Project, which surveyed hundreds of older Americans on their advice on love and marriage. He is the author of a number of books, including 30 LESSONS FOR LIVING: Tried and True Advice from the Wisest Americans and 30 LESSONS FOR LOVING: Advice from the Wisest Americans on Love, Relationships, and Marriage.
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