2218. Advice for Prospective Brides


Her Highness Anonymous asked at 2216, “If you had had a daughter, what advice would you bestow upon her in the month preceding her wedding?” I would advise her how to hold her marriage together over a lifetime. Test and verify before the wedding. She can expect but can she live with these things? Test for what’s present:

  • Does he cherish you? Can you see his devotion in his actions? Is he worth devoting your life to him? Worthy tradeoff? Good enough prospect as father of your children?
  • Can you live with his faults—unchanged that is—for at least 20 years? It’s more about your commitment to him than his dedication to pleasing you.

Verify what lies ahead:

  1. Can you live with his two major expectations: a) Your loyalty as he measures it by your respect of, gratitude for, and dependence on him? b) Your likeability as measured by his personal pleasure and enjoyment being in your company? You have to participate, interpret, and accept all of what he is and does as his love of you. Every marriage starts that way or close to it. (Once he decides to marry, his expressions of devotion are required by his sense of loyal duty and he expects no rewards for just pleasing you, but he loves gratitude expressed by sex.)
  2. It’s not the big affirming emotions such as your love, his love, affection, intimacy, sex, and devotion that hold a couple together. Even romantic love fades in a year or two. If their mutual loyalty and likeability are missing, it was likely caused by the negatives described in the next paragraph. It means the foundation for enduring love was weakened or dissolved by their competing to express themselves, blame the other, get their way, or all of the above.
  3. Couples separate their bonding with little negative things that eat away at the other’s self-interest, -esteem, and –image. By either or both of them, demeaning remarks, reproachful comments, annoying habits, irritating behaviors, and critical judgments undermine her importance to him in her eyes and his dedication to her in his eyes. Their investment in the other appears foolish or worse. They compete over insignificant matters and judge harshly when they don’t get their way. Over time, repeated negative reaction to the spouse compounds into disarray and disinterest in what the other thinks, which rips and shreds sincerity when they try to make up and reaffirm their mutual love.
  4. She substitutes apology for actions to change and thinks she’s done her part. He substitutes disloyalty as easier and simpler than changing, and figures he’s done what he has to do. Two people living separate lives under the same roof until one or both decide to separate.
  5. She expects him to change and he doesn’t or won’t. He expects her not to change and she does. If she learns to live with him and his faults without competing with him, she finds little reason to fault him, and he gets to live with the woman he married.

I’ve just described how it’s far easier to ruin a marriage than sustain it successfully. I’ve told you what you can expect to happen unless you steer both of you away from the negatives that eat away at goodwill, respect, and love.

Now, daughter, if it sounds too complex or unworthy of your ability and goal, back out. Life isn’t easy and marriage is harder. When the choice is yours, choose what makes you a better person, which is usually done by making some man a better man without expecting to change him. Confused? Good. Work your way out of that dilemma—it’s a wifely duty—and you’ll more than likely have a happy marriage.

17 Comments

Filed under courtship, Dear daughter, How she wins

17 responses to “2218. Advice for Prospective Brides

  1. Lyndeeloo

    Sir Guy,

    I plan to read this several times and work at understanding all of these points, but I’m a bit confused about the following:

    (from #2) “Absent loyalty to and likeability of the other, enduring love necessary for the marriage to continue has a weakened or non-existent foundation; it weakens or dissolves out of what’s next.”

    I think I get the first part. A lack of loyalty between spouses and a lack of mutual likeability would create strife. I’m having trouble understanding the rest of the paragraph.

    I have some news to share; I’m engaged! My now-fiancé proposed a week ago! This blog has helped me so much during the courtship phase! What topics, articles, etc. would you recommend studying during the engagement phase?

    With gratitude,
    Lyndeeloo

    Your Highness Lyndeeloo,

    I can see the lack of clarity. Try this description of when romantic love fades.

    If their mutual loyalty and likeability are missing, it was likely caused by the negatives described in the next paragraph of the article. It means the foundation for enduring love was weakened or dissolved by their competing to express themselves, blame the other, get their way, or all of the above.

    That adds much clarity, so thanks for the question. Think I’ll rewrite the original.

    What articles to study? Virtual virginity and Mirror Time (if you use it). I think nothing is more important than learning how to make yourself more influential with him without competing with him aka knowing how to balance your hard-headed determination with your soft-hearted willingness to please. VV provides options and words with which to defend yourself against his skillful delivery of his interest and how he can make it your overpowering interest also. MT provides personal input to yourself to strengthen your resolve and determination to fulfill your hopes and dreams.

    Good luck with fiancé.

    Guy

    • Cinnamon

      Lyndeloo,

      Congratulations – this is wonderful news!!!

    • gonemaverick

      Lyndeloo, congratulations ma’am.

    • Lyndeeloo

      Thank you for the well-wishes on my engagement, ladies 🙂

      Thank you for your detailed response, Sir Guy. The clarification helps a lot! And thank you for the article suggestions. I do practice VV. I’m still working to understand and make the most of MT; I need to dig deeper into those articles.

      Pardon me if the following is off-topic for this thread. I am in need of a safe place to express some confusion and to seek support. The following things were shared in confidence, and because of overlapping social circles, I have no one I can share these things with in my day-to-day, face-to-face interactions:

      Sir Guy and ladies of WWNH, I’ve been thinking about feminine self-image for a while, but especially over the last two days. Last night and the night before, I was awake into the wee hours of the morning because I was having heart-to-heart conversations with two different female friends. In both cases, the evenings began as fun, catching up, girl-talk conversations. And, in both cases, the conversations turned tearful as these women shared traumatic experiences from their pasts. They are both unmarried. One is my age, and the other is younger–a former student of mine, but both are adults. Both were raised in strong Christian homes by parents who love and instruct their children well. One of these women told me she had a multi-year lesbian relationship and the other told me she’d been raped. They are both torn up about their choices, actions, and the results.

      The one who was in the lesbian relationship says that she never did (and still does not feel that she is gay), but she loves and desires one particular woman. The relationship began as a friendship. Then, one night, alcohol became involved, boundaries were crossed, and a deep friendship was mingled with physical experience. As a result, she says she ties physical and emotional intimacy to her former lover. And she is in so much pain. On one hand she wants the intimacy with this woman so fiercely that it feels magnetic and unstoppable, but then on the other hand, she expresses a deep guilt and shame for feeling that way. She told me that she has shared this with a couple of other people, and they immediately condoned the relationship. She told me that was not what she wanted her friends to say to her. She said she while wanted them to accept HER, she didn’t want them to condone her behavior, but wanted them to affirm the biblical teachings she believes to be true. She says she wants and needs to be held accountable and she wants help fighting the temptation she feels. I’m hurting for my friend and I don’t know how to support her right now.

      The other young lady was raped by a boyfriend a couple of years ago. I’m the only person she has told. I’ve witnessed many of her poor decisions and I’ve tried over and over again to provide her with the skills that I’ve learned here. I’ve referred her to the blog multiple times, but she’s never read it. I’m concerned about some current choices she making and I want to help her too. I want so badly for her to feel an increase in self-worth and to make better choices.

      I suppose I’m sharing these things here because I’ve been asked to keep them confidential, but I am in need of guidance and support as I try to be a source of support for these two ladies. Prayer for them and for me would be so greatly appreciated.

      • Miss Gina

        Congratulations, Lyndeeloo!

        I will try to keep short and steer back to the blog topic as much as possible…

        Thoughts on the friend with a lesbian attraction…strong temptation can be from the negative spirituality surrounding it and/or a hidden emotional draw. For instance, if the person resembles somehow a female from the past who rejected her (e.g., mother or other relative). Also especially, the other woman was manipulative and likely learned what buttons to push to keep her coming back, just like the wrong kind of man can do. The friend may–or may not–need to renounce the temptation in the power of Jesus many, many times, even out loud. Strong temptation is not sin; that is forgiven and in the past, God has new things ahead.

        As for the former student, I wonder if you’ve gotten to the point of confronting her (gently but not too gently) about the fact that her ways have repeatedly hurt her, and different results are going to require different actions. Her reaction would tell you much.

        I will pray as you request. 🙂

  2. prettybeans

    Congratulations Lady Lyndeeloo!
    Very best wishes as you manage this new phase 🙂

  3. anonymous

    Sir Guy,
    men are never more handsome than when they go above and beyond! You’ve given me lots to ponder 🙂 Also, please forgive my delayed response, moving apartments took more of my time than I had predicted.

    Lyndeeloo, congratulations! Enjoy the engagement period, it goes by so fast!

  4. Hopeful

    Hi Sir Guy
    I am a prospective bride and this article of yours is very informative and timely. Many thanks for your insights.

    I wonder this and hope you might share your thoughts: is it wise to be somewhat strong-willed and challenging during the engagement period and then agreeable and cooperative after the wedding day and throughout marriage? In this scenario, would a man pleasantly surprised by this and feel good about it? Or should I be acting like his wife right now and be unchanged after marriage, I’m not proud of it, but sometimes I find myself testing my fiancé to find out his character, ie how quick is he to anger? How compassionate is he etc because he’s almost 40 and never had a steady relationship before. I wonder how he isn’t already married to someone! He won’t tell me about any of his past relationships either.

    Am I playing with fire? I do love this man, but maybe he’s too good to be true? It’s not long until our wedding date and all seems fine but I wonder if I’ve chipped away at his devotion unnecessarily trying to “uncover” his try character. Ps I’m practicing VV though when we first started dating he had conquered me, before we got engaged I decided I should practice VV and he respected my wishes.

    Your Highness Hopeful,

    Welcome aboard. It’s a great day when another pretty woman joins us on this cruise to WhatWomenNeverHear.

    You ask, “is it wise to be somewhat strong-willed and challenging during the engagement period and then agreeable and cooperative after the wedding day and throughout marriage?”

    Given his attitude and your lack of knowledge of his character, you should be even more strong-willed and challenging than you now are.

    Your screening is not complete enough so probe indirectly by surprising him, making him uncomfortable, doing what makes you feel good without regard for how he feels.

    His deliberateness about keeping his past hidden is a huge red flag. Not his sexual past or his compassion index. Look for job security, temper, eager to hate, small thinker, lack of ambition, and most of all lack of respect for those with whom he’s forced to associate, such as waiters/servers. Consider this, could he be after your money or financial support?

    How easy was he to convince to accept VV? If real easy, be suspicious. If he fought long and hard to get you to forget VV, then give him credit.

    Overall, I think you should deepen your screening. Start with these questions:

    1) Is he truly loyal to you alone? Does he see you as loyal to him? Yes, mutual sexual fidelity both ways but something deeper than that. More interactive connections that seem to bond you.

    2) Do you find him personally very likeable as a person first, man second, and his roles in life third? Does your liking him include respecting him? Are you able to respect the things he’s involved in daily?

    3) What would he do if you demand a one, two, or even six month delay in the wedding. Suggesting it might uncover a lot of his thinking.

    4) Explore with him the need or propriety of a prenuptial agreement. See where the convo leads you.

    5) Inquire as to whom he supports or may be supporting after you marry?

    6) Inquire about his health record and medical history. Gently but inquiring.

    Let your curiosity blossom in ways that stimulate his imagination to want to defend himself.

    I don’t think you know enough right now to have a very long range marital adventure.

    Guy

    • Hopeful

      Thank you Sir Guy for your detailed reply. I am so grateful. Could you please share examples on how to deepen my screening?

      Your Highness Hopeful,
      You need to teach yourself this way. Compare his words to his actions. Do they match? Commitment comes from words, they can always be twisted to fit actions. Devotion comes from actions that he designs or selects in order to please you. They’re not even questionable let along twistable.
      Guy

      • Annabel

        Hi Sir Guy!
        An interesting post, I’m also emerging from the woodwork to ask a question! I am engaged to a wonderful man, caring and attentive although very occasionally he can a say borderline offensive comment to try and get a laugh or join in on the banter and conversation.

        Should I also be taking a similar approach to Hopeful above? Ie being strong willed and challenging? Would fiancé feel more rewarded by a pleasant surprise of cooperation after marriage? I understand her situation is different to mine – I feel I can trust my man and that he is loyal to me, with the small exception of his very occasional mistimed or poorly delivered comments. We are similar in the he had already conquered me before I changed my mind and reverted to VV. He was upset at first but after I explained earnestly that it would be far worse if I were to get pregnant (the disappointment of both our families) he accepted it, although we fool around up to a point.

        I guess what I am trying to ask is – given that men seem to find satisfaction in getting something hard to get, should I play hard to get until our wedding day? Or is this considered the chipping away of his devotion?

        Annabel

        Your Highness Annabel,

        When he makes a borderline or offensive comment that stirs or shakes your sensibilities, say nothing. Give a glancing but neutral-countenance glare and ignore the rest. After a few times he’ll likely stifle it.

        As to hopeful, yes. Do pretty much the same but not as intensive or deliberate. Even though you may have a better-for-now man, you should never quit screening. When you marry, you’re stuck with what you accepted at the altar. Look at him as unchangeable after that but perhaps slightly changeable before that. Not changeable as you wish but as he decides in order to please himself, which perhaps may be just to please you if he thinks you’re not trying to change him.

        Well done on choosing VV and getting him to accept it.

        Yes, continue hard to get. Not in the literal sense since you’ve got a well-developed relationship. But in fun and games, teasing, generating laughter. You won’t be chipping away at his devotion unless you make fun or disparage his actions that please you.

        Guy

        • Cinnamon

          Sir Guy’s tactic about the facial expression instead of words really does work. I have a friend who is very opinionated and articulate with words (she is a highly regarded university lecturer by profession, so she talks for a living). She is sick of her husband’s constant negativity about anyone and everyone (he finds fault constantly and can never find anything positive to say about anyone). Up until recently she would argue with him when he did this. Predictably, it just made him dig in more forcefully.

          I explained to her the reason he resists her corrections, no matter how well-argued, is because he resents competition. I told her to try using the facial expression tactic. A few weeks ago they were having dinner at a restaurant when he started criticising one of their friends. She gave him a slight “Huh? What the hell are you talking about?” expression. He continued with his tirade. She then did the same thing but in an even more animated way (with a slight look of disgust) but still didn’t say a word to him. Almost immediately in response to the “slight look of disgust” he backed off and said, “I’m getting cranky in my old age, aren’t I?” She said he has never done that in all their years of marriage (apologised for his criticism of others). So yes, this method works. Thanks, Sir Guy!

        • Annabel

          Thank you Sir a Guy, I appreciate this a lot

        • Annabel

          Hi Sir Guy
          Thank you very much, I will try to put into practice.
          What about a situation where a trusted friend confides in me that she has just overheard fiance talk unkindly about someone. She was shocked and surprised because he is usually so nice. My gut tells me not to confront fiance about it but how else to address?
          Should I slightly reduce my usual level of affection? He will be so confused because he won’t have a clear reason what I am doing this.
          Then what if he matches the slight withdrawal? Downhill spiral from here?
          Annabel

          Your Highness Annabel,

          Can’t rely on another’s judgment to shape your life. Fiancé may have had something that stirred his anger momentarily. Not even a red flag. The reaction you propose would be overkill since it’s rooted in someone else’s word rather than your observation.

          However, you can keep your eyes open and if the person he allegedly spoke unkindly about comes up in conversation, you might get a bigger picture of what fiancé is like.

          Not to worry. All’s well in your world.

          Guy

          • krysie869

            “However, you can keep your eyes open and if the person he allegedly spoke unkindly about comes up in conversation, you might get a bigger picture of what fiancé is like.”

            This comment stood out for me. If a man (or woman) behaves like this above, what does this say about his/her character? I personally know many people who behave like this.

          • annabet

            Thank you Sir Guy =)

  5. Hopeful

    And congratulations too Lyndeeloo!

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