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Perspective: The three keys to a happy marriage

Calvin Tatum

When I was a little boy, I had a Farm-All tractor tricycle that I would ride around the neighborhood. I’d visit elderly ladies who could tell that I was good marriage material, even then. So they would advise me on how to have a happy marriage. I’ll pass on their Three Big Rules:

Rule #1: Don’t Expect Change. The person you marry will never be changed by you.

Rule #2: Sort Out Which is Which. Every marriage has one who loves and one who is loved. Decide with your partner which one you’ll be.

Rule #3: Don’t Overrate Chemistry. Falling in love lasts for only a short while. What’s important is whether or not you two like to do things together, whether it be the automotive show, the rock concert, or the demolition derby.

I’m sure you’d like to know if I’ve followed this advice. I’d like to tell you, but I’m out of time. It’s time to say, “This is Tom McBride, and that’s my Perspective.”

Tom McBride is co-author of the annual Beloit College Mindset List. He is a specialist in Shakespeare. For 42 years he taught at Beloit, where he won an award for excellence in teaching. He also coordinated the Mackey Distinguished Writers' Program and the First Year Initiatives Program.